[Skip to Content]
Ontario Arts Council (OAC)
Grants Advanced Search
Grants Advanced Search


Shoshana Wasser

Associate Director of Public Affairs and Communications
Toll-free in Ontario: 1-800-387-0058

In Memoriam: Former OAC board member Senator Josée Forest-Niesing

November 22, 2021

It is with sadness that the Ontario Arts Council (OAC) board and staff learned of the death of former board member and Sudbury resident Josée Forest-Niesing, on November 20 from COVID-19 related causes.

Josée was appointed to OAC’s board of directors in early 2018. Prior to this, she had been the chair of the Art Gallery of Sudbury, and one of its board members since 2009. A dedicated member of the Franco-Ontarian community, Josée was involved with several organizations related to her legal profession, including the Centre canadien de français juridique (CCFJ) and the Fédération des associations de juristes d’expression française de common law (FAJEF).

As part of her service to OAC, Josée participated on board committees and in OAC activities including Arts Day at Queen’s Park. She stepped down from the board when she was appointed to Canada’s Senate.

Our condolences to her family, friends and colleagues.

Josée Forest-Niesing holding a sign that says, "The arts are important to me because they make life even more beautiful!" at Arts Day at Queen’s Park in 2016.

Josée Forest-Niesing, then Chair of the Art Gallery of Sudbury, at Arts Day at Queen’s Park, fall 2016