Board of Management

Erin Allen

Erin Allen

Mio Gelato, Operations Manager

Erin, a lifelong Kingstonian, has spent her career actively working with small businesses and charitable organizations in the local community. Currently acting as Operations Manager at Mio Gelato, Erin leads a team in creating positive customer experiences, specializing in product development, special events, and community engagement. Running a business dependent on a vibrant local economy, Erin understands the important impact the Downtown Kingston! BIA has in increasing footprints and fun in Kingston’s downtown core. Since becoming Operations Manager, Erin has increased Mio Gelato’s involvement in Downtown Kingston! events through participation in the Princess Street Promenade and contributing thematic tasty treats to Movies in the Square. Noticing a need for more young entrepreneurs to take interest in their downtown community, Erin believes she can be an effective voice in energizing enthusiasm for the purpose and mission that the Downtown Kingston! BIA readily affirms.

Bev Allinson

Bev Allinson

Confederation Place Hotel, Managing Director

Bev is a Managing Director of Confederation Place Hotel with her family. Born and raised in Kingston, she has worked in Toronto, Chicago, and London, England, gaining an extensive background in the hospitality industry. In 1978 the Allinson family built Confederation Place Hotel where she still works every day. Bev has served on the Downtown Kingston! Board for many years and has been Chair of the Board and Acting Chair. After one year as Past Chair, she left the Downtown Kingston! Board to care for her ailing mother and later returned to the Board in 2006. The Tourism Advisory Committee, the Chamber of Commerce, the Kingston Women’s Network and the Board of Directors of the KGH Foundation and others have all had the benefit of Bev’s experience as a business person and member of her community. Bev is also an enthusiastic promoter of the City of Kingston through her attendance at international sales meetings and seminars. The efforts of the Downtown Kingston! Board to maintain and improve our unique downtown core makes this task a pleasure for Bev.

Sean Billing

Frontenac Club, Managing Partner

Sean is the Managing Partner of the Frontenac Club and Executive Director at Brace Hospitality Consulting. Sean brings a wealth of hospitality, accommodation and tourism experiences with him, having held corporate, regional and senior property positions with international brands over his 30 year career. Sean’s path has seen him lead in resort areas around the globe, including the Canadian Rockies, East Africa, the United States and in Central Ontario. He has also held executive positions at luxury city-centre hotels in Ottawa, Guelph, Chicago, and Nairobi. Sean serves as a Board member on both our own Regional Tourism Organization 9 and on RTO4 and is a member of the Destination Kingston Marketing Committee. Sean is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario and attended hospitality school at St. Lawrence College. He is interested in strengthening partnerships in Kingston that can deliver world class experiences to our residents and visitors.

Lynn Carlotto

Lynn Carlotto

Leon's Centre, General Manager

Downtown Kingston! Vice Chair

Lynn is a 20+ year veteran of the venue management industry. Prior to moving to Kingston in 2013, Lynn’s career was based in Connecticut with general management positions at Live Nation’s Toyota Oakdale Theatre and Centerplate’s Webster Bank Arena, corporate Director of Marketing and Events for Ogden Entertainment, and Director of Marketing for both the Hartford Civic Center and New Haven Coliseum. Lynn earned her B.A. from Boston College and M.A. in Leadership from Albertus Magnus College. She is a member of Kingston Women’s Network and 2014 winner of Venues Today’s Women of Influence Award. Lynn believes that the Leon’s Centre and the Downtown Kingston! BIA are linked in the most fundamental of ways. Leon’s Centre ticket buyers and fans are downtown shoppers, hotel guests, diners and simply visitors. Building on these successes is her focus.

Maria Cronk

Maria Cronk

Fancy That / The Roundstone, Owner

In 1985 Maria left a teaching career in Ottawa to join her family business, Fancy That Group. They opened their third store, in downtown Kingston, in the summer of 1985. Maria has been married to her high school sweetheart for 34 years and they have three beautiful grown daughters and two grandsons, with a granddaughter on the way. Maria’s entire family has been involved in the business in one way or another and they always have fun working together. Maria has always had a love for people and helping them, whether it is for fashion or fitness. She has been teaching fitness in the Kingston community for the last 33 years. Maria has served on the Downtown Kingston! Board for 13 years, two of which she served as Chair. Maria loves working with other business people to make our downtown a better place to shop, dine, and live. She is happy to see the new generation coming into the core and opening new and exciting businesses.

Melissa Eapen

Improbable Escapes, Director of Business Development

Melissa moved to Kingston in 2015 to start Improbable Escapes in the heart of downtown Kingston. She was drawn to this city due to the downtown area, and would like to be able to pursue her interests in marketing, downtown development, and advocacy by serving on the Downtown Kingston! Board of Management. Melissa also serves on the Kingston Young Professionals Board, and is currently focused on engaging younger professionals to get them involved with various aspects of Kingston through professional development, education or getting involved (or educated) in public affairs. An established business owner, international traveller, passionate adventurer, and inspired writer, Melissa is always on the lookout for ways she can continue to inspire, empower and encourage others.

Jessica Huddle

Jess Huddle

NORTHSIDE espresso + kitchen, Owner & Operator

Co-owner of NORTHSIDE, Jess has recently returned to her hometown of Kingston after 16 years of living in Melbourne, Australia. Jess has had a varied and successful career in Operational and Change Management across an executive level. She has worked extensively in both the not for profit and corporate/finance sector. Jess is passionate about working to ensure the downtown core continues to engage in progressive, innovative and inspiring developments, bringing a new and diverse audience to the downtown area. Jess is particularly passionate about advocating for unique and exciting opportunities into the upper blocks, contributing to a holistic and thriving downtown community.

Thomas Hunter

Thomas Hunter

Tommy’s / Inkwell Tattoos & Piercings, Owner

Tommy was born and raised in the Kingston area, growing up on a dairy farm in Joyceville where his family has farmed for over 150 years. At the age of 25, he decided it was time to set his own roots in Kingston and opened his first business, Tommy’s, in March 2011. In February 2014, he partnered with a good friend opened his second business, Inkwell Tattoos and Piercings. In 2017, he purchased his first rental property in downtown Kingston and took on the role of landlord. Tommy is a community minded individual and takes great pride in the work he does with organizations including the Food Bank and most recently Hospice Kingston. He sits on the Committee for Kingston’s newest festival, Fall For Kingston as well as heads up several of his own initiatives, most notably his annual community Christmas dinner and grocery hamper delivery service.

Richard McNevin

Richard McNevin

Soloway Wright, LLP, Partner

Richard began practicing law in Toronto in 1985, specializing in corporate finance with an emphasis on public company work (primarily for real estate companies) and venture capital financings (primarily for technology companies). In 1998, he became a member of the law firm of Soloway Wright LLP and a partner in January of 2001. His practice primarily focuses on acquisition, disposition, development, and financing for a number of Kingston based real estate developers and financial institutions. Richard’s downtown issues of interest include promoting the intensification of residential development in the downtown core and fostering Kingston’s arts community as a viable component of the downtown’s business community.

Dr. Aba Bowles-Mortley

Cher-Mère Canada, Owner

Aba has lived in Kingston since 1998, she obtained a BSc, MSc and PhD at Queen’s University and the Royal Military College of Canada, respectively. Aba opened Cher-Mère Day Spa in 2013 in downtown Kingston, as a way to expand a family business from Trinidad using their own brand of natural products through the esthetic services provided at Cher-Mère Canada. Recently, a second location was added in Kingston’s west end. Aba has volunteered for over two decades with the Youth Diversion Organization, is a member of 100+ Women Who Care, sits as the finance chair on the Tourism Kingston Board, is Co-Chair on the University Council on Antiracism and Equity at Queen’s University and is a member on the Downtown Kingston! Member Services Committee.


Tim Pater

Tim Pater

Black Dog Hospitality Group, Owner

Downtown Kingston! Chair

Tim has lived in Kingston for almost all of his life. After earning his B.A. from Carleton in Ottawa and studying in hospitality at Ryerson in Toronto, he returned to Kingston to start a catering business. Tim established Le Chien Noir Bistro in 2000, followed by Atomica Kitchen I Cocktails in 2003, Harper’s Burger Bar in 2010 and Dianne’s Fish Shack & Smokehouse in 2013. His latest business venture is Black Dog Catering, which was established in 2016. Tim has an interest in the Local Food, Local Chefs initiative and is a member of the Downtown Kingston! BIA Marketing, Development and Executive Committees and served as a member of the Kingston Public Market task force. Tim is also a member of the Tourism Kingston Board where he sits on the steering committee for developing the Integrated Tourism Strategy and on the Culinary Tourism Task Force. Tim’s interests include a continued investment in infrastructure, cultural and entertainment facilities, and increased residential density

Christine Ray-Bratt

Chris James, Owner

A native Kingstonian, Christine completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Toronto. She then spent the next decade working in Hong Kong, China and Singapore managing a publicly-listed fortune 500 company and a global Italian brand. Along the way, she attained her MBA from the University of Ottawa, as well as honed a global view of successful businesses among different geographical and demographic realities. In 1994, Christine and her husband decided to return to their roots and raise their children in Kingston, opening Chris James in 2010. Christine’s biggest concerns for the downtown core are issues such as keeping the downtown retail environment competitive and relevant in an ever changing retail landscape, and new initiatives to keep the downtown innovative by answering what customers want.

Ed Smith

Ed Smith

Windmills Café Ltd/WCL Kingston Holdings Inc., Owner

Ed owned and operated Windmills restaurant and catering for the past 25 years, before selling it in early 2019. Ed has served on the Downtown Kingston! BIA Board and Executive Committee for a number of years. He served on City Council from 2003 to 2010 and was involved in numerous committees including The K-Rock Centre, Market Square, Downtown Action Plan and Parking Advisory, and served as Chair of the Downtown Kingston! BIA from Dec. 2010 to June 2014. Ed also served as the Chair for the 2014-2018 Downtown Kingston! Board and he brings a wealth of knowledge related to City Hall that will help to connect, invest in and protect downtown Kingston. For the past five years, Ed has also been President and Chair of Kingston Home Base Housing, Kingston’s largest provider of supportive housing, homeless emergency accommodations and supportive housing services to the vulnerable in the community.

Julie Tompkins

Empire Life, Vice-President, Corporate Services & Chief Communications Officer

Julie has spent most of her working life in downtown Kingston, beginning at CKLC/CFLY and CKWS-TV. After seven years with Public Health, her next career move brought her back downtown to Empire Life, where she has spent the past two decades. Julie feels strongly about giving back to her community and has held volunteer and Board positions with a number of organizations, including University Hospitals Kingston Foundation, United Way, St. Lawrence College, H’art Centre, Pathways to Education, and the Canadian Life and Health Insurance Association. She currently serves on the Campaign Cabinets of both St. Lawrence College and Pathways. As a senior leader at one of the city’s largest private employers and as someone who simply loves Kingston, Julie is especially interested in supporting local businesses, developing and sustaining a vibrant downtown – both economically and socially – and transportation issues.

Nick Waterfield

Nick Waterfield

Chez Piggy/ Pan Chancho, Manager

Downtown Kingston! Treasurer

Nick is an engaged downtowner. His work at Chez Piggy and Pan Chancho for the past 38 years runs parallel to the growth and development of downtown Kingston during the same time. Nick continues to be a strong supporter of new and emerging opportunities that are forward thinking. As a long standing Downtown Kingston! BIA Board member and current Treasurer he has a solid grasp of how Downtown Kingston! achieves its successes. He looks forward to being part of a board that will bring ideas forward for consideration that will continue to see our downtown be the cultural and economic success that it is.

Councillor Ryan Boehme

Councillor Wayne Hill

Councillor Rob Hutchison (Alternate)