Winners of the 2018 Surrey Mayor’s Art Awards pose for a photo with then-mayor Linda Hepner, middle, at a Civic Hotel ballroom. Pictured from left are Surrey Little Theatre’s Hannah Lohnes, Concord Pacific Developments’ senior VP of sales Grant Murray, Hepner, Ellie King of Royal Canadian Theatre Company and Peninsula Productions Society president Geoff Giffin. (Photo: Anne Peterson/Surrey Board of Trade)

Surrey Mayor’s Art Awards rebranding after no response from McCallum

Surrey Board of Trade event has a new logo and a new name – the Surrey Arts & Business Awards

The third annual Surrey Mayor’s Art Awards are happening this year, but the word “mayor” won’t be in its name.

Surrey Board of Trade (SBOT) partnered with former mayor Linda Hepner in hosting the event for the past two years, but they are going it alone this year after not hearing from Mayor Doug McCallum if he would attend the 2019 event.

“I’ve been asking his office if he’s going to be attending the June 14 event. We’ve been asking for months,” said Anita Huberman, CEO of SBOT. “Indications were that I have to wait for a response, but no response has been forthcoming for the past two months. I have to move on, I need to raise sponsorships, and promote nominations and the event itself. I have a new logo for the event, and the word mayor is out of the title.”

The event has now been “rebranded” and has a new name: the Surrey Arts & Business Awards.

Huberman said the event has always aimtd to “really bridge arts and business together, to showcase what the city is doing for arts and culture, and to really award individuals as well as businesses that are contributing to Surrey from the arts and culture perspective.”

A Now-Leader request to interview McCallum for this story was denied.

“The Mayor has no comment on this,” according to an email from a spokesman in the Mayor’s Office.


(The new logo for the Surrey Arts & Business Awards. Image submitted.)

Despite uncertainty about whether McCallum will attend, Huberman said the plan is for city staff to continue to participate.

“We’ve been conversing with city staff, with parks, recreation and culture, and they’re going to be providing a brief update on stage as they did last year. City staff are just such a pleasure to work with and they’re open to working with the Surrey Board of Trade,” she said.

McCallum and all of council are “absolutely” invited to attend, Huberman added.

“All government representatives are more than welcome,” she said, “and have attended in the past.”

SEE ALSO: ZYTARUK: King Kong has nothing on this Surrey pair

SEE ALSO: City, not Surrey Board of Trade, planning Mayor’s 2019 State of City Address

This is the latest in ongoing tension between Huberman and McCallum.

The Surrey Board of Trade hasn’t seen eye-to-eye with McCallum on a number of issues and hasn’t shied away from vocalizing it, issuing a press release two days after the civic election last October saying the group will “continue to advocate for LRT, RCMP and ridesharing despite” the results of the election.

SBOT also said it was “disappointed” with the city’s budget, which delayed several civic amenities in an efford to reduce the city’s accrual of debt, and also meant no new police officers would be hired in 2019.

On Jan. 29 Safe Surrey Coalition councillors were a no-show at a Surrey Board of Trade-hosted forum on the city’s policing future amid the slate vowing to replace Surrey RCMP with a municipal force. Surrey council’s plan to replace RCMP came under some scrutiny at the event.

And, for the first time in decades, the city is organizing the annual Mayor’s State of the City Address instead of the SBOT.

Last December Surrey council reduced the business group’s budget from a recommended $40,000 to $10,000, after SBOT initially asked for $85,000.

At the time, McCallum noted the move “makes it equal with the South Surrey Chamber of Commerce and also the Cloverdale Chamber of Commerce.”

SEE ALSO: Surrey Board of Trade ‘disappointed’ with switch to SkyTrain, says delay imminent

SEE ALSO: Safe Surrey Coalition council members a no-show at forum on city’s policing future

SEE ALSO: SBOT CEO ‘disappointed’ as Surrey council moves to cut $30K from proposed grant

The Surrey Arts & Business Awards are set for June 14, from 7:30 to 10 a.m., at Civic Hotel (13475 Central Ave.).

Nominations are now open and close May 13, in the following categories: Arts & Innovation Award, Cultural Ambassador, Philanthropy Award and Legacy Award.

To nominate someone for the 2019 awards, or to register to attend, visit

In 2018, former mayor Linda Hepner presented the Legacy award to Surrey Little Theatre, the Philanthropy award to Concord Pacific, the Arts & Innovation award to Peninsula Productions and the Cultural Ambassador award to Ellie King, founder and artistic director of Royal Canadian Theatre Company.

READ ALSO: 2018 Surrey Mayor’s Art Awards for King, Concord, Peninsula and Surrey Little Theatre June 15, 2018

Like us on Facebook Follow us on Instagram and follow Amy on Twitter

Just Posted

South Surrey wrestler wins pair of national titles

Ana Godinez Gonzalez tops field at junior, senior championships in Saskatoon

Surrey Falcons females win Bantam provincial hockey banner, place second in Peewee final

‘We told the girls that everyone had to contribute for us to be successful,’ head coach says

VIDEO: Dramatic fire destroys Surrey home

A man, woman, two dogs, a cat and kittens made it out safely

Ambulance’s 22-minute response time concerns White Rock man

Ambulance arrives 22 minutes after call for service

World Water Day celebrated in South Surrey

City of White Rock manager of utilities Saad Jasim to give a presentation on water Monday

Edmonton judge rules Omar Khadr’s sentence has expired

Eight-year sentence imposed in 2010 would have ended last October had Khadr remained in custody

Trudeau sells housing plan in visit to hot real estate market in B.C.

Trudeau said the budget contains measures to help first-time buyers

Norway opens probe into why cruise ship ventured into storm

The Viking Sky was headed for southern Norway when it had engine problems on Saturday afternoon

B.C. river cleanup crew finds bag of discarded sex toys

Chilliwack volunteers stumble on unexpected find while removing 600 lbs of trash from riverway

Crash threatens Vancouver shipyard’s schedule for new coast guard ships

The delivery of the vessel was already years overdue

Fired B.C. farmland commission chair backs NDP rule changes

Richard Bullock agrees with Lana Popham, ALC records don’t

Kamloops chamber of commerce director let go after controversial Facebook posts

Facebook account had derogatory comments about Muslims, Justin Trudeau

B.C. RCMP officer cleared after Taser incident seriously injures woman

Woman with knives refused to comply with orders therefore officer used appropriate level of force

‘Bikinishe’ swimwear retailer prompts Better Business Bureau warning

Watchdog has gotten dozens of complaints about company, which has been using fake Vancouver address

Most Read

l -->