Parkdale Village BIA Seeks New Executive Director – Job Posting

Executive Director

Parkdale Village Business Improvement Area [BIA]

The Parkdale Village BIA is looking for a full-time Executive Director.  The BIA has a staff of 1.5 staff who serve the over 270 members of the BIA on Queen St W between Dufferin and Roncesvalles.

The Executive Director, as the only full-time employee of the BIA, provides administrative support, customer service and general assistance to the BIA. The individual must be a self-starter and possess strong organizational skills to ensure that priorities are assigned to projects and activities.

Reporting to the Board of Management through the BIA Chair [or designate], the BIA Executive Director’s responsibilities include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Implement programs and policies as approved by the Board;
  • Financial management and human resource coordination;
  • Establish, encourage and maintain positive, constructive and proactive relationships with the BIA members as well as those non-members whose action can impact the BIA; and
  • All administrative functions of the BIA.

Duties of the BIA Executive Director include the following:


  • Schedule meetings and prepare agendas with Board/Committee Chair;
  • Prepare and distribute committee minutes or notes, follow-up on issues as required;   Responsible for regular office operations such as filing, folding, stuffing and mailing;   Maintain mailing lists [members, media, committee members, etc]; and
  • Prepare cheques, invoices and other financial documents.

Meeting Organization  

Provide support for Board and committee meetings;

  • Make all required physical arrangements including refreshments, seating etc.;
  • Contact all required committee members and other interested parties to attend.


  • Prepare, produce and distribute member newsletters;
  • Maintenance of social media program;
  • Regular communications with existing BIA members via site visits throughout the year;
  • Outreach to new BIA members ;
  • Liaise with City departments such as: Economic Development Culture and Tourism Department, Works and Emergency Services, Urban Development Services Departments and other departmental staff as appropriate;
  • Liaise with members of other BIAs and BIA associations; and
  • Liaise with community groups and agencies.

Streetscape and Marketing

  • Maintain and develop streetscape programs;
  • Support and implement the ongoing street beautification program
  • Support and implement the marketing strategy of the Board
  • Play a lead role in the promotion and development of a positive image of the Parkdale business community


  • University or College Training in Administration or equivalent;
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills;
  • Motivated, organized and ability to concurrently manage projects and initiatives;
  • Detail-oriented; and
  • Strong computer skills (Microsoft and Word Press]


Deadline for applications is Monday June 25, 2012 at 4:00 pm.

Cover letters and resumes outlining how you meet the requirements of the job to:

Hiring Committee

Parkdale Village Business Improvement Area

1313 Queen Street West

Toronto, ON.  M6K 1L8, or email to

[email protected]


Parkdale Profiles: Michelle Germain of Shopgirls Boutique!

Over the coming weeks, the Parkdale BIA will be posing questions to some of our fabulous business owners for our “Parkdale Profiles” section.

Our first profile is Michelle Germain, owner and curator of Shopgirls Gallery Boutique, a 1800 square foot retail and studio space at 1342 Queen West, featuring 80 Canadian artists and designers.  Michelle’s dedication to promoting the arts combined with her business acumen and industry knowledge recently earned her the title of Aboriginal Business Woman of the Year. I recently talked to her about Shopgirls:

PVBIA: Hi Michelle, can you tell me about the beginning of Shopgirls?

MG: I first started Shopgirls with a friend of mine. We used to do what today we refer to as “pop up shops” where we would feature artists and designers that we loved (most of which were friends of ours). Having worked in fashion and marketing for several years, I came across a lot of talented folks and when I asked “You made that? Where can I buy that?” more often than not, these little treasures were not sold anywhere, hence the beginnings of Shopgirls!

Red Knob Ring by Ashley Winnington Ball

Fold Over Fringe Tote by Miss Mak

PVBIA: It seems like Shopgirls has exploded online, on sites like Shopify and Pinterest.  How have online sales and marketing changed the way you do business?

MG: By exploring the online potential we are now reaching customers internationally! We get most of our online orders from the U.S but have also shipped to Switzerland, the U.K. and even Australia. Obviously we are now able to promote Canadian artists and designers to the world. What a great feeling!

Visit Shopgirls online store here, “Pin it to Win it” at Pinterest, or follow them on Twitter, or like them on Facebook!


PVBIA: Something that I love about Shopgirls is that you cater to all types of women’s bodies.  Why was that important to you?

MG: I am not, nor have I ever been a “off the rack” kind of gal. I’ve struggled my whole life with finding clothes that suit and fit my body and quite frankly, I quickly realized, I was not alone. My approach to buying the right styles is not looking at a woman’s size but rather her shape. (Shop by body shape here). This approach provides women of all shapes and ages to look for certain cues on what might suit them best. My knowledgeable staff is trained to help women feel good about themselves by finding pieces that fit their particular shape as opposed to their size.

Good look for a circle shape

and an "inverted triangle" shape

the "hourglass" look

style for the rectangular body shape










the 'standard' shape

and the triangle!
















PVBIA: Can you tell us about a new piece or designer that you’re excited about?

MG: This question is like asking me which of my daughters I love the most!  One thing I can say is that the selection in the shop is better than it’s ever been.  I’d rather hear what our customers are most excited about – it’s just too difficult for me to choose! 

(Editor’s Note: I really love this beautiful Galina dress! I want it!)


PVBIA: Finally, what is your favourite thing about Parkdale?

MG: Everything!  The good, the bad, the ugly! The vibe, the residents, the cool indie businesses, the support, the community, and the location!

Thanks Michelle!

Parkdale Village Community Open House

On Saturday, June 2nd, there will be a “Parkdale Village Community Open House” at the new Parkdale Amphitheatre on the corner of Queen St W. and Dufferin, from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m. Come rain or shine!

The Open House offers the chance to meet many Parkdale community organizations in one place. A wide variety of groups will be on hand to provide information and answer questions.

The list of participating organizations below will be added to as more organizations confirm their attendance.

Vendors from the Sorauren Farmer’s Market will offer food. Local musicians and other performers will entertain. People will be invited to visit the soon-to-be-opened West End Food Co-op across the street.

The event will be preceded by a “Parkdale Village Historical Walk,” focusing on Queen Street and the surrounding neighbourhood. The walk, led by historian Roger Riendeau, will leave the Amphitheatre at 11 a.m. and return there by noon, in time for the Open House.

The Open House is sponsored by the Parkdale Residents Association, the Parkdale Village BIA, the West End Food Co-op, the Parkdale Community Development Group, and the Parkdale News.

Please drop in on June 2nd. Please tell your friends and neighbours about the Parkdale Village Community Open House.

Participating Organizations: Arrabon House, Councillor Gord Perks, 11 Division of Toronto Police Service, 14 Division of Toronto Police Service, Gallery 1313, Greenest City, Imperial Movement, Library Settlement Partnership, Parkdale Activity-Recreation Centre (PARC), Parkdale Branch of the Toronto Public Library, Parkdale Community Development Group (PCDG), Parkdale Community Information Centre (PCIC), Parkdale Community Legal Services (PCLS), Parkdale Residents Association (PRA), Parkdale Focus, Parkdale Intercultural Association (PIA), Parkdale Village BIA, St. Francis Table, The Parkdale News, West End Food Co-op

Parkdale, Who Knew? Signs of Parkdale

One of the enchanting things about Parkdale is what can be discovered right before your eyes if you give yourself the chance to look.

So often I walk down Queen West with my head down and headphones on, blocking out the sights and sounds around me.  When I have a camera with me it forces me to slow down and look at Parkdale in a different light: as a neighbourhood overflowing with art, charms, history, surprises – and above all – life.

Today I want to appreciate one of the charms of Parkdale – our signs.  From the handmade to the corporate, from the old to the new, from the hidden to the in-your face, Parkdale is filled with signs: signs of our history, signs of our change – and they are all so charming.

Camille Unisex Beauty Lounge, at Queen West and Dowling.

Shangrila, Canadian Caribbean, Coca-Cola.

Cattlemen’s Meat Market, family-owned in Parkdale since 1972.

Fullworth, an old fashioned community grocery store at Queen and Westlodge, where the woman at the cash calls you “dear”.

Get a load of this wonderful old sign for “Acme Deluxe Ice Cream Bricks”!  Wish they still sold ’em.

Sigh! Gorgeous entrance to the Lake View Apartments.

Lee’s Variety!  Going all red and white is one way to stand out!

Monty’s Credit Jewellers.  One of the oldest businesses in Parkdale!  Wonder if the clock still works.

“Sunset Tower” on Jameson and Queen.  The name and lettering is so film noir.

Gold, glass and wood on Jameson by Queen.

Simple guide to good branding: tell it like it is and put it up in lights!

Parkdale artist Rcade is behind much of the beautiful newer signage in Parkdale, including Chantecler (above),

Community 54,

and The Mascot.

I hope you enjoyed this installment of Parkdale, Who Knew?  Please tell us what your favourite sign in Parkdale is!

Dufferin Underpass Public Art Installation – ‘Spirits of the Grotto’

“Three years in the making, Jacob’s Spirits of the Grotto consists of 34 large metal panels, each bearing a pair of mosaic tile discs representing eyes. Arranged within the underpass like heroes in a Hall of Fame, Spirits of the Grotto turns an otherwise dull transport corridor into a vibrant passageway.”

Dufferin Underpass Public Art Installation

Luis Jacob – Spirits of the Grotto

City of Toronto Dedication Event

Date: Friday, May 18

Time: 5:00 – 5:30 pm

Place: Dufferin Amphitheatre (parkette), 1266 Queen Street West

“City of Toronto Councillors Ana Bailão (Ward 18) and Gord Perks (Ward 14) join internationally renowned Toronto artist Luis Jacob for a dedication of his new Dufferin Underpass public art project, Spirits of the Grotto. The public is also invited to this event.

Part of Toronto’s Public Art program, the work consists of 34 perforated-metal panels bearing colourful mosaic designs in the shape of eyes gazing down on passing cars, cyclists and pedestrians. For more information on this project please visit:

Project financing came from the City’s Transportation, Structures and Expressways area, City Planning Urban Design, and Transportation’s Public Realm Unit.”

Excerpted from Councillor Gord Perks’ wonderful blog.


Parkdale, Who Knew? – CONTACT Photography Festival

As part of Scotiabank’s CONTACT Photography Festival, the Parkdale Village BIA presents “Parkdale, Who Knew?”.   Jonathan Groeneweg, artist and teacher, mentored the students of Parkdale Institute Collegiate to create a four-venue exhibition that explores the secrets and beauty of the Parkdale neighbourhood through their photography.

Please join us at our opening night reception on Thursday, May 3rd from 7-10 at Boreal Gelato Company at 1312 Queen Street West.  Visit Boreal Gelato, Brown Sugar Bakery (1374 Queen West), Poor John’s Cafe (1610 Queen West) and eco-boutique Chartreuse Style (1692 Queen West) to view the exhibits throughout the month of May.

Parkdale Prana Room’s Two Year Anniversary Party

Come celebrate at Parkdale Prana Room’s Two Year Anniversary Party, this Saturday May 5 from 8pm.  The party is going down at 1273A Queen St W. (at Elm Grove) and it is open to the public!

Parkdale Prana Room is home to a variety of holistically based bodymind therapies. Come have some piña colada punch (alcoholic and non-alcoholic served) and samosas. Whether you’ve been curious about our activities and space or if you are just stopping in to say hi and join the party all are welcome. Our in house Holistic and Thai Yoga Massage Therapist, Jennifer Gilmour will be djaying. BYOB.

The other Parkdale Prana Room practitioners are: Simone Moir, Director: Gestalt Psychotherapy, Yoga and Meditation. Paul Lara of QiBelly: QiGong, Tai Chi and Reiki, Catherine Cameron: Cranial Sacral Therapy, Reiki for Families and Birthing Support Programs, Karen McWilliam: Post Natal Yoga and Mother’s Support Group.