TORONTO - Heather Ostertag, the president of FACTOR was recently awarded the Order of Canada.
Ostertag's entire career surrounds the development of Canada's musical talent. She began at the Canadian Talent Library in 1977 and remained it and FACTOR (Foundation to Assist Canadian Talent On Records) merged in 1986. In 1988, she was appointed executive director and in 1999 was appointed president.
"Heather's appointment to the Order of Canada marks her outstanding contributions to the arts in Canada," said FACTOR chair Jim West. "FACTOR in particular, is in a very fortunate position to be run by an individual with as much passion and understanding of our cultural industries as that which Heather brings to the table."
FACTOR has grown dramatically over the years. What began as a partnership with an annual budget of $200,000 donated exclusively b y private radio, has "over the years, accumulated to an astounding total of over $25 million � their continued support is invaluable and can never be overstated. Currently, (private radio's) contribution exceeds $4 million annually," says the press release.
As a private non-profit organization, FACTOR provides assistance toward the growth and development of the Canadian independent recording industry. The foundation administers the voluntary contributions from sponsoring radio broadcasters as well as two components of the Department of Canadian Heritage's Canada Music Fund Council's programs to support the Canadian music industry. FACTOR has been managing federal funds since the inception of the Sound Recording Development Program in 1986 (now known as the Canada Music Fund Council).
Support is provided through various programs which all aid in the development of the industry. The funds assist Canadian recording artists and songwriters in having their material produced, their videos created and support for domestic and international touring and showcasing opportunities as well as providing support for Canadian record labels, distributors, recording studios, video production companies, producers, engineers, directors - all those facets of the infrastructure which must be in place in order for artists and Canadian labels to progress into the international arena.
FACTOR is currently providing in excess of $11.5 million annually to support the Canadian music industry.
In its 21 years, FACTOR has provided over $71 million in funding to assist in the development of the Canadian independent music industry. Of this, $33.2 million was offered to assist with the production of sound recordings for commercial sale. In turn, these projects have sold over 13.6 million copies in Canada and 10.1 million internationally. The over 23.7 million units sold worldwide have generated over $487.5 million in retail sales.
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