Tim Progosh

Acting Executive Director and Board Member

Tim is an actor/writer/producer and was the catalyst and president of the Canadian Comedy Awards from 1999 – 2016.  He is an honour's graduate in Political science and has completed the Rotman school of business Governance essentials for Not for Profits.

He has produced Festivals, created touring exhibits and raised over 5 million dollars to support the Canadian Comedy Awards and the establishment of the original Canadian Comedy Hall of Fame.

Tim toured as a sketch and Stand-up comic for over 30 years.  He has been a regular on three series (The adventure of Sinbad, Super Rupert, and Crawford), gust starred in many established shows like Schitt’s Creek and Kim’s Convenience and has executive produced hundreds of hours of television including award winning specials for CMT, CBC and the Comedy Network.

His has handled PR accounts for Molson’s, Pirelli tires and Air Jamaica.

Kenny Robinson

President - Comic/Actor/Producer

"The Fabulous Kenny Robinson" is a living legend on the Canadian Comedy scene.

His irreverent, socially conscious, intelligent, opinionated, and profane style of comedy has made him a fixture and favourite with comedy clubs, festivals, swingers conventions, radio, and television audiences for 4 decades.

Many of the country's brightest young comics have claimed "The Fab" as a mentor and influence, including Russell Peters, Mike Wilmot, and Darren Frost.  His “Nubian Desciples” live show has launched many careers and Kenny has produced these events for over 25 years.

The Winnipeg born, Chicago bred Robinson has hosted The Gemini Awards and was twice nominated for his writing and performance in his groundbreaking one-hour special "Thick and Thin" on the CBC.  Kenny has earned accolades as the creator, writer, producer, and host of the edgy late-night series "After Hours with Kenny Robinson" on The Comedy Network. His episode of the CBC's Comics has been referred by The Toronto Star as "One of the few episodes that still stand with the test of time.”

As an actor Kenny has appeared in such films as "Third Miracle" with Ed Harris, "Down To Earth" with Chris Rock, Clement Virgo's "Love comes Down", and David Sutherland's "Love, Sex and Eating the Bones."  Robinson has appeared on the CBC's "Royal Canadian Air Farce", Showtime's "Soul Food", and has a wide fan base from his re-occurring roles as "Jellybean" on PAX series "Doc", starring Billy Ray Cyrus, and as "Mickey" on the teen fave "Radio Free Roscoe" on the "Noggin' Network.

Internationally, Kenny has performed in South Africa, The UK, (Paramount Presents World Comics) and Carnival Cruise Ships’.  In 2015, Kenny was the winner of THE PHIL HARTMAN AWARD at the CANADIAN COMEDY AWARDS, for his lifetime achievements and contribution to the Canadian Comedy Industry.


Rick Wharton

Board Member, Executive Director Festival Hall, Actor, Improv Comic.

Rick Wharton.  Performing on stage, television, screen, and radio.  Wharton is a Second City Toronto alumnus performing with both the touring company and under study for main-stage productions.  For five years, Space: The Imagination Station viewers enjoyed Rick's character “The Conspiracy Guy” which was nominated in 2002 for Best Male Performance for the Canadian Comedy Awards.  Rick was nominated again in 2006 for best male improvisor at the Canadian Comedy Awards.  Rick was also the winner of TMN'S Stand-up “The Next Jerry Seinfeld” Award.  Wharton's concept touring show, The Canadian Comic Witness Protection Program showcases not only Rick but other Canadian comedians who perform both improv and stand-up.  High energy live performance on stage for private corporate functions, soft seaters, and clubs.

National television commercials have included Nicorette, UPS, Sprint, Wheel of Fortune, McDonald's, Coca Cola, Ford, Wal-Mart, Visine, Leon’s, Cheerios.

Actor, Comedian, Director- Producer and Radio personality.
Currently residing the last 9 years at Festival Hall as Director.
Revitalizing the theatre in Pembroke with over 20,000 patrons each year.

Jim Slotek

Treasurer - Journalist /writer

Jim Slotek is a former Toronto Sun columnist, movie critic, TV critic and comedy beat reporter who covered Montreal’s Just for Laughs festival for 20 straight years.  He’s been a scriptwriter for the NHL Awards, Gemini Awards, and documentaries, and was nominated for a Gemini Award for comedy writing on a special (the NHL Awards).

Slotek currently writes for Zoomer magazine, Canadian Music Week and the O’Cannabiz business expo.  He also started the movie site original-cin.ca which features the work of veteran print movie critics.

Mladen Raickovic

Mladen Raickovic is a successful entrepreneur and leader in the Canadian advertising technology industry. Currently Mladen is Head of Global Partnerships for Google Canada where he leads partnerships between Google and Canada’s largest media companies.

Prior to Google, Mladen co-founded Performer Media in 2004, a Canadian online advertising network that was acquired by Torstar and subsequently launched as Olive Media in 2006. He held several key roles at Olive Media, but most recently served as General Manager of Programmatic Media where he was responsible for managing their programmatic advertising and performance marketing divisions, all technology infrastructure, product and commercialization.

In 2013 Mladen became Global General Manager of AdParlor, a leading global social advertising technology company and one of Facebook’s top 10 global marketing partners. As Global GM, Mladen was responsible for managing over 100 people across 4 offices (including sales, operations, engineering and finance) and led the overall strategy for the business.

In addition to his professional work experience, Mladen has contributed significantly through various volunteer roles over the past 12 years. In the online advertising space Mladen was Chairman of the Board and President of The Toronto Advertising Club and led various committees on behalf of the Interactive Advertising Bureau. Mladen currently sits on the board of directors of The Parkdale Centre for Innovation an organization dedicated to making the innovation economy inclusive and accessible for every underserved entrepreneur across Canada.

Catherine McCartney

Catherine is a Gemini Award winning producer for Best T.V Sports Program or Series. Elvis Airborne.

Co exec producer of After Hours, Starring Kenny Robinson (13 episodes) CTV/Comedy Network. Special guest Stars Kevin Hart and Leslie Jones.

Co exec producer Thick/Thin Comedy Special, Starring Kenny Robinson& Ronnie Edwards CBC TV.

Co-Created and Produced with John Hirsch the Musical Revue “Flying” for The Sands Atlantic City Casino.

Co-Created and Produced French Canadian Review “Risqué “Chateau Champlain Montreal.

Founded a Canadian Production Company Village Gate North, with New York Partners Art D’lugoff owner of the legendary The Village Gate, Grammy winning producer and Co-Founder of Atlantic Records Gerry Wexler, and Pat Kenny owner and founder of the famous Kenny’s Castaways Club.

Our production of Off-Broadway hit, One Mo’ Time which had a very successful run at the Village Gate Theatre in New York, was Produced and presented in our new venue, The Village Gate North Toronto for a highly successful 15 month run.

Pat Kenny and Catherine went on to present a one-of-a-kind Dance Club and concert venue in Toronto. The Diamond Night Club which was one of the largest in Toronto.

Personal Management for

 Award-winning Actors:

John Candy, Al Waxman, Moses Znaimer, Kenny Robinson.

Saturday Night Live Cast: Tony Rosato, Robin Duke.

Daryn Jones: Host and Creative Producer MTV LIVE Gemini Award Best Top Series.

Kenny Robinson:  Creator Producer Nubian Disciples Series. Nominated Gemini Awards.


Award Producers /Directors/Writers:

Burt Metcalfe, M*A*S*H, TV Series Emmy Awards

Bernard Rothman: Son-Rise (A miracle of Love) NBC Movie.  Lamb Chops (TV Series) David Suzuki TV Special.

Robert Iscove: Cinderella - Disney Movie, She’s All That (Movie)

Choreographer of Jesus Christ Superstar (Movie)

California Affiliation

Brillstein Entertainment partners.

Sandy Wernick senior executive vice president.

Justin Mazzotta C.P.A.

Justin graduated from the University of Ottawa’s Telfer School of Management in 2009 with a Bachelor of Commerce in Finance & Accounting, and was designated a Chartered Professional Accountant in 2014. Since 2016 he has served as the Chief Financial Officer of Innovative Financial Group. He also serves on the board of the Ottawa real estate developer CasaRock Developments. Justin maintains a public practice giving tax advice and services to families and corporations.
Justin is a certified ski instructor, has a passion for creating haunted house attractions for Halloween and regularly gives blood. He has published 2 books and enjoys role-playing games with friends. He spends his free time with his family and has been a fan of comedy – particularly stand-up – his entire life.

Ryan Goldhar

Ryan Goldhar has worked in the Canadian film and television industry for over 25 years. He started in talent representation, working in commercial and literary departments, later moving on to music supervision and then to casting, running one of Canada’s largest casting facilities for 10 years.

He is currently Vice-President at the Characters Talent Agency, as an agent representing some of Canada's top talent and has been Executive Producing for over ten years. Ryan’s most recent project, Becoming Burlesque, written and directed by Jackie English, was his first as lead Producer. It has enjoyed many festival screenings, received awards, and had theatrical runs in Canada and the United States.

Nik Djukic-Walker

Nik Djukic-Walker is a seasoned leader in the digital media industry with over 15 years of experience. Throughout his career, he has held key roles across tech platforms, exchange networks, and premium publishers, driving digital adoption and excellence in an ever-changing digital economy.

As the head of Partnerships and Sales for TikTok in Canada, Nik is dedicated to building a world-class media team and helping businesses discover the full potential of TikTok to ignite growth and exceed their business goals. He is a trailblazer who has helped shape the digital media landscape and is committed to helping others achieve their full potential in this exciting and dynamic industry.

Jutta Gruenewald

Has worked in sales and marketing for CBC for specialty channels and more recently Post media as senior VP. She was instrumental in spearheading sales strategies for CBCD specialty channels , major publications and the Olympic games. She is an expert in Partnership development as well as National marketing campaigns.

She has served as a board director for Vividata, as well as a Mentor for the Ted Rogers Mentorship program.

Shab Baharyeh

She is the Operations Lead of the IDEAS Community at Pelmorex Corp (Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, Awareness, Solidarity) and works with leadership teams to reexamine policies and practices to co-create strategies that foster equity in all aspects of corporate life.

Her previous experience is in the media and advertising landscape, helping tech and media companies generate revenue through advertising, product placement and ad innovation. It’s within this environment that she was able to shift her career from sales & marketing to DEI (diversity, equity and inclusion). This purpose-driven role isn't directly connected to revenue and requires a different approach - obtaining buy-in from senior leadership and colleagues on equity initiatives. Her ability to be collaborative and authentic helps build bridges and nurture relationships.