WIFT Toronto Crystal Awards

The 2021 WIFT Toronto Crystal Awards Gala

At WIFT Toronto, we take pride in not only providing opportunities for women to rise in their careers, but also in celebrating their accomplishments and moments of triumph.

The 34th Annual WIFT Toronto Crystal Awards Gala took place on Tuesday March 8, 2022. Normally taking place in December, the 2021 Gala has been pushed to 2022, appropriately timed with International Women's Day. We are looking forward to honouring the accomplishments of our five incredible recipients in a unique online celebration.

The 2022 WIFT Toronto Crystal Awards Gala will take place on Tuesday November 29. The call for nominations will go out the week of July 18.

2021 Crystal Awards Program

Click here to see the 2021 Crystal Awards Program


Our 2021 Crystal Award recipients are:

Special Jury Award of Distinction: Dr. Shirley Cheechoo C.M., Founder andArtistic Director, Weengushk Film Institute
Creative Excellence Award sponsored by eOne: Jennifer Holness, Writer, Director, Producer & President, Hungry Eyes Media Inc.
Mentorship Award sponsored by Company 3: Anita Lee, Executive Producer, Ontario Centre, National Film Board of Canada
Digital Trailblazer Award: Ana Serrano, President and Vice-Chancellor, OCAD University
Outstanding Achievement in Business sponsored by eOne: Jane Tattersall, SVP Formosa Group Toronto
For more information on our recipients, see this link.


Your host is Canadian Screen Award winning actress and comedian
Emma Hunter. Best known for her roles on Mr. D, The Beaverton, and
currently in Moonshine, Emma will guide us through an evening of tributes
and celebration of five extraordinary women whose incredible careers are an inspiration to everyone in the screen-based media industry.


WIFT Toronto thanks the following 34th Annual Crystal Awards partners and sponsors for their support:

Presenting Partners: Company 3, eOne

Supporting Partner: WildBrain

Event Partners: Bell Media, Ontario Creates, Sim , Telefilm Canada, City of Toronto

Event Supporters: Nabet 700-M Unifor, Shaftsbury, Spin Master Entertainment, and William F. White

Producing Partner: Big Bang Beige

Want to join us in illuminating enterprising and barrier-breaking women in Canada's film, TV and digital media industry? Contact us today to inquire about sponsorship opportunities. We look forward to partnering with you!

LATEST NEWS: WIFT Crystal Awards Returns, Just In Time For International Women’s Day


Highlights from the 2021 WIFT Toronto Crystal Awards

video courtesy of Big Bang Beige


‍Past winners include: Marsha Greene, Mary Young Leckie, Edwina Follows, Mary Harron, Michelle Crespi, Christina Piovesan, Sally Catto, Semi Chellas, Tara Ellis, Julie Bristow, Shelley Saywell, Tassie Cameron.

This award recognizes the dynamic quality of the recipient’s work in the screen-based media. Their recent work has gained national and/or international attention in the previous year and has established a standard for those working in the industry.


Past recipients include: Sue Haas, Kim Gibson, Deb Day, Diane Williamson, Barbara Bailie, Lucie Lalumière.

This award recognizes the recipient’s significant contributions to Canada's digital and interactive media industry, as demonstrated by their creativity and leadership—including but not limited to, idea generation, content creation, distribution, technology, audience engagement, and funding models. 


Past recipients include: Esta Spalding, Anne Dorval, Mia Kirshner, Sarah Gadon, Samantha Bee, Shirley Douglas, Catherine O'Hara, and Sandra Oh.

Presented to a woman in recognition of her significant and well-renowned body of work in Canada and abroad.

MENTORSHIP sponsored by Company 3

Past recipients include: Jennifer Kawaja, Alison Duke, Zoe Dirse, Karen Walton, Deborah Osborne, Ken Dhaliwal, Corrie Coe, Jay Switzer, Lalita Krishna, Susan Ross, Carol Whiteman, Lesley Harrison, Lisa Meeches.

This award recognizes the recipient’s outstanding contribution to motivating and building the careers of emerging and mid-career individuals in the screen-based media industry. The recipient has guided and supported emerging professionals and has been a role model assisting entrepreneurs in growing their own companies.


Past recipients include: Beth Janson, Tammy Frick, Grace Carnale-Davis, Mary Bredin, Tracey Pearce, Lisa Olfman, Joy Rosen, Barbara Bowlby, Margaret O'Brien, Anne Marie La Traverse, Noreen Halpern.

This award recognizes the recipient who—through the consistent quality of their work—has made a major contribution to the screen-based media industry as a leader in enterprise development. They have built a culture of excellence; inspiring colleagues to push the boundaries of innovation.


The Special Jury Award of Distinction is presented to an individual who has built a legacy as a ground-breaking force in our industry and whose life's work is dedicated to building a vibrant, accessible, diverse, and active creative community.

Past recipients include: Marci Ien, maxine bailey, Karen Thorne-Stone (Ontario Creates), Tonya Williams (ReelWorld Film Festival), Pat Ellingson (formerly, TVO), Susan Cavan (Accent Entertainment), and Trina McQueen (broadcasting industry pioneer).

WIFT Toronto Members are invited to nominate exceptional leaders in their sphere who have a minimum of 10 years of experience in the screen-based industry, for a 2021 Crystal Award.

Crystal Award winners are selected by an independent jury of past Crystal Award recipients (see link above). Please review this list before submitting your nomination. Previous winners can be nominated again; however, preference will be given to first-time nominees (recipients within the past five years are not eligible).


·        Canadian Citizen, Landed Immigrant, or Permanent Resident

·        Minimum 10 years in the screen-based industry (film, television and/or digital media)

·        Current WIFT Toronto Board Members are not eligible for nomination

·        Recipients within the past five years are not eligible for nomination

·        Does not need to be a WIFT Toronto Member

You must be a WIFT Toronto member in good standing to nominate an individual for a Crystal Award; however, the person being nominated does not have to be a current WIFT Toronto member. Candidates may only be nominated in one category.


Crystal Awards Alumni


Jane Tattersall (Outstanding Achievement in Business)

Anita Lee (Mentorship)

Ana Serrano (Digital Trailblazer)

Jennifer Holness (Creative Excellence)

Dr. Shirley Cheechoo C.M. (Special Jury Award of Distinction)


Beth Janson (Outstanding Achievement in Business)

Jennifer Kawaja (Mentorship)

Sue Haas (Digital Trailblazer)

Marsha Greene (Creative Excellence)

Marci Ien (Special Jury Award of Distinction)


Tammy Frick (Outstanding Achievement in Business)

Esta Spalding (International Achievement)

Alison Duke (Mentorship)

Kim Gibson (Digital Trailblazer)

Mary Young Leckie (Creative Excellence)

maxine bailey (Special Jury Award of Distinction)



Edwina Follows (Creative Excellence)

Grace Carnale-Davis (Outstanding Achievement in Business)

Zoe Dirse (Mentorship)

Deb Day (Digital Trailblazer)

Karen Thorne-Stone (Special Jury Award of Distinction)



Mary Harron (Creative Excellence)

Mary Bredin (Outstanding Achievement in Business)

Karen Walton (Mentorship)

Diane Williamson (Digital Trailblazer)

Tonya Williams (Special Jury Award of Distinction)



Michelle Crespi (Creative Excellence)

Tracey Pearce (Outstanding Achievement in Business)

Deborah Osborne (Mentorship)

Barbara Bailie (Digital Trailblazer)

Pat Ellingson (Special Jury Award of Distinction)



Christina Piovesan (Creative Excellence)

Lisa Olfman & Joy Rosen (Outstanding Achievement in Business)

Ken Dhaliwal (Mentorship)

Lucie Lalumiere (Digital Trailblazer)

Susan Cavan (Special Jury Award of Distinction)



Sally Catto (Creative Excellence)

Barbara Bowlby (Outstanding Achievement in Business)

Corrie Coe (Mentorship)

Trina McQueen (Special Jury Award of Distinction)

Anne Dorval (International Achievement)



Semi Chellas (Creative Excellence)

Margaret O’Brien (Outstanding Achievement in Business)

Lalita Krishna (Mentorship)

Sheila Hockin (Special Jury Award of Distinction)

Mia Kirshner (International Achievement)



Tara Ellis (Creative Excellence)

Susan Ross (Mentorship)

Anne Marie La Traverse (Outstanding Achievement)

Mary Ellen Carlyle (Special Jury Award of Distinction)

Sarah Gadon (International Achievement)



Julie Bristow (Creative Excellence)

Noreen Halpern (Outstanding Achievement)

Carol Whiteman (Mentorship)

Samantha Bee (International Achievement)



Lesley Harrison (Mentorship)

Jill Hennessy (International Achievement)

Laurie May (Outstanding Achievement)

Shelley Saywell (Creative Excellence)



Tassie Cameron (Creative Excellence)

Shirley Douglas (International Achievement)

Lisa Meeches (Mentorship)

Christine Shipton (Outstanding Achievement)

Christa Singer (Special Jury Award of Distinction)



Catherine O’Hara (International Achievement)

Kit Redmond (Mentorship)

Sandi Ross (Special Jury Award of Distinction)

Virginia Thompson (Creative Excellence)

Barb Williams (Outstanding Achievement)


Tecca Crosby (Mentorship)

Ilana Frank (Creative Excellence)

Judy Gladstone (Outstanding Achievement)

Toni Myers (Outstanding Achievement)

Sandra Oh (International Achievement)

Claire Prieto (Special Jury Award of Distinction)


Jennifer Baichwal (Creative Excellence)

Jeanne Beker (Special Jury Award of Distinction)

Karen Gelbart (Mentorship)

Christina Jennings (Outstanding Achievement)

Linda Schuyler (International Achievement)


Gail Asper (Outstanding Achievement)

Arsinee Khanjian (Creative Excellence)

Bonnie Sherr Klein (Special Jury Award of Distinction)

Bill Mustos (Mentorship)

Kelly Rowan (International Achievement)


Kim Cattrall (International Achievement)

Dianne Schwalm (Phyllis Switzer Mentorship Award)

Maria Topalovich (Outstanding Achievement Award)

Debbie Travis (Creative Excellence Award)


Isme Bennie (Outstanding Achievement)

Kathryn Emslie (Mentorship)

Deepa Mehta (Award for Creative Excellence)

Cynthia Reyes (Outstanding Achievement)


Norm Bolen (Friend of WIFT Toronto Award)

Phyllis Platt (Outstanding Achievement Award)


Silva Basmajian (Outstanding Achievement)

Rebecca Jenkins (Creative Excellence)

Janis Lundman & Adrienne Mitchell (Excellence in Production)

Don MacLean (Friend of WIFT Toronto Award)

Laura Michalchyshyn (Excellence in Mentorship/Professional Development)


Susanne Boyce (Professional Development)

Wendy Crewson (Creative Excellence)

Christina Ford (Excellence in Production)

Paul Gratton (Friend of WIFT Toronto Award)

Jane Tattersall (Excellence in Production)

Phyllis Yaffe (Lifetime Achievement)


Wayne Clarkson (Friend of WIFT Toronto Award)

Camelia Frieberg (Excellence in Production)

Jan Miller (Excellence in Training or Professional Development)

Annabel Slaight (Lifetime Achievement)

Stacey Stewart Curtis (Excellence in Training or Professional Development)

Joyce Wieland (posthumously) (Lifetime Achievement)


Jennifer Dale (Outstanding Achievement)

Sandra Faire (Outstanding Achievement)

Peter Flemington (Friend of WIFT Toronto Award)

Sarah Polley (Outstanding Achievement)

Anna Maria Tremonti (Outstanding Achievement)

Mary Walsh (Outstanding Achievement)

Janice Porteous (CBC WIFT Toronto Woman Writer’s Award)


Denise Donlon (Outstanding Achievement)

Patricia Rozema (Outstanding Achievement)

Sonja Smits (Outstanding Achievement)

Joyce Davidson Susskind (Special Award)

Barbara Willis Sweete (Outstanding Achievement)

Pamela Wallin (Outstanding Achievement)


Micheline Charest (Outstanding Achievement)

Doug Dales (Friend of WIFT Toronto Award)

Luba Goy (Outstanding Achievement)

Trina McQueen (Outstanding Achievement)

Barbara Samuels (Outstanding Achievement)


Suzette Couture (Outstanding Achievement)

Rita Shelton Deverell (Outstanding Achievement)

Martha Henry (Outstanding Achievement)

Alexandra Raffe (Outstanding Achievement)

Ted Rogers (Friend of WIFT Toronto Award)


Joan Hutton (Outstanding Achievement)

Heather McGillivray (Outstanding Achievement)

Ann Medina (Outstanding Achievement)

Alanis Obomsawin (Outstanding Achievement in Direction)

Jay Switzer (Friend of WIFT Toronto Award)


Tantoo Cardinal (Outstanding Lifetime Achievement Award)

Ivan Fecan (Friend of WIFT Toronto Award)

Deepa Mehta (Outstanding Lifetime Achievement Award)

Joan Pennefather (Astral Award)

Helga Stephenson (Outstanding Achievement Award)

Anne Wheeler (Outstanding Achievement Award)


Marilyn Belec

Don Haig (Friend of WIFT Toronto Award)

Sheila McCarthy (Outstanding Achievement Award)

Deepa Mehta (Outstanding Achievement Award)

Nancy Smith


Nancy Archibald (Outstanding Achievement Award)

Andrea Martin (Outstanding Achievement Award)

Dodi Robb (Outstanding Achievement Award)

Arla Saare (Outstanding Achievement Award)


Susan Rubes (Lifetime Achievement Award)

Andra Sheffer (Outstanding Achievement Award)

Gail Singer (Outstanding Achievement Award)


Barbara Barde (Outstanding Achievement Award)

Rena Krawagna (Outstanding Achievement Award)

Helen Shaver (Outstanding Achievement Award)


Kay Armatage (Outstanding Achievement Award)

Jackie Burroughs (Outstanding Achievement Award)

Phyllis Switzer (Award of Merit)

“The Crystal Awards creates a wonderful opportunity to recognize women and their accomplishments, as well as inspire others. I was deeply honoured to be the recipient of the inaugural Digital Trailblazer Crystal Award.”
~Lucie Lalumière, Founder & Principal, Lalumière Media
Come celebrate with us!
Come celebrate with us!