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Key appointments to Australia's cultural sector

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Key appointments to Australia’s cultural sector

6 July 2015

Deputy Prime Minister

Minister for Infrastructure and Regional Development

Acting Attorney-General

The Hon Warren Truss MP

The Australian Government today announced a number of key appointments in the cultural sector.

Mr Rupert Myer AO has been reappointed as Chair of the Australia Council Board. Ms Gabrielle Trainor has been

reappointed as Chair of the National Film and Sound Archive Board and Mr Wayne Denning will take up the role of

Deputy Chair. Mr David Jones has been appointed Chair of the National Museum of Australia Council. The terms

of these appointments are for three years.

Mr Neil Peplow has been appointed as the Chief Executive Officer for the Australian Film, Television and Radio

School (AFTRS). and Mr Michael Loebenstein will continue as the Chief Executive Officer of the National Film and

Sound Archive (NFSA) for another three years.

Mr Myer’s reappointment as Chair of the Australia Council Board follows a first term of three years of strong

leadership of the Government’s major arts funding agency. As an eminent business person and philanthropist,

with extensive leadership experience in the arts and cultural sector, Mr Myer brings a broad range of skills and

knowledge to direction-setting for the Australia Council.

Ms Gabrielle Trainor has been reappointed as Chair of the NFSA board. During her term as chair since 2012, Ms

Trainor has displayed excellent strategic, management and policy expertise. As well as overseeing comprehensive

business reform at the NFSA, Ms Trainor is leading the organisation towards an enhanced profile, especially

online. Her reappointment will deliver ongoing stability for the organisation in a period of significant change.

Mr Wayne Denning has been appointed Deputy Chair to the NFSA board. He has been an active and engaged

member of the board since 2011 and has a strong knowledge of the NFSA’s strategic priorities and operational

requirements. His appointment as deputy chair will provide continuity for the board.

Mr David Jones previously served as Deputy Chair of the National Museum of Australia Council and was the chair

of its audit, Finance and Risk Committee. Mr Jones’ knowledge and experience in business and budget

management are highly regarded and have greatly assisted the Museum’s council. His ongoing leadership will

provide strong continuity around the council’s ambitions to grow non-government revenue.

Mr Neil Peplow has been appointed as the new CEO of AFTRS. Mr Peplow is currently chief operating officer of

the Met Film School in London and Berlin, and was the director of screen at AFTRS from 2011 to 2014. With his

strong skills and experience in screen educational institutions, as well as proven screen production expertise, Mr

Peplow will be an invaluable addition to the team at AFTRS.

Ms Ann Browne, current Director Corporate Services and Chief Financial Officer of AFTRS, will act in the position

of CEO until Mr Peplow starts in his role.

Mr Loebenstein was appointed as CEO of the NFSA in 2011. As CEO, he has raised the profile of the NFSA

nationally and internationally, and developed a number of important collaborations. Mr Loebenstein has provided

high quality leadership and delivered a wide ranging modernisation and restructure of the institution. His

reappointment will ensure that the current renewal of the organisation is seen through to completion. I congratulate

Mr Myer, Ms Trainor, Mr Denning, Mr David Jones, Mr Peplow and Mr Loebenstein on their appointments to these

important roles and thank them for their ongoing support of the Australian cultural sector.

I would like to acknowledge the outstanding work of Sandra Levy who completed her eight-year term as CEO of

AFTRS in June 2015. Ms Levy oversaw significant developments during her tenure and has left the school in a

very strong position, which I am sure will be enhanced by the international experience Mr Peplow brings.

I also extend my thanks to outgoing chair of the Council of the NMA, Mr Daniel Gilbert AM for his leadership and

shaping the Museum’s strategic direction and to instigating changes to the structure, operations, and strategy of

the Council and its committees.

Mr Rupert Myer AO

Mr Myer is a former Chair of the National Gallery of Australia, National Gallery of Victoria Foundation, Kaldor

Public Art Projects and Opera Australia Capital Fund, and a former board member of the Museum of

Contemporary Art. He chaired the 2002 independent Inquiry into the Contemporary Visual Arts and Craft Sector.

Mr Myer currently holds a number of board positions including serving as a director or board member of AMCIL

Limited, Creative Partnerships Australia, eCargo Holdings Limited, Healthscope Limited, Myer Holdings Limited,

the Myer Foundation, Australian International Cultural Foundation, Felton Bequests’ Committee, Jawun

Indigenous Corporate Partnerships, the University of Melbourne, Faculty of Business and Commerce Advisory

Board and the Yulgilbar Foundation.

Mr Myer’s first term as Chair of the Australia Council Board started on 1 July 2013 under the Australia Council Act

2013 and expired on 30 June 2015. Prior to this he served a one-year term as Chair under the Australia Council

Act 1975.

Mr Myer was honoured in this year’s Queen’s Birthday honours list with an Officer of the Order of Australia (AO).

Mr Myer was recognised “for distinguished service to the visual and performing arts, through governance roles

with leading cultural institutions, as a supporter and benefactor, to the promotion of philanthropy, and to the


Ms Gabrielle Trainor LLB, FAICD

Ms Gabrielle Trainor is a non-executive director and adviser. She is a director of organisations including

Infrastructure Australia and the Barangaroo Delivery Authority, and is a member of the Board of Trustees of the

University of Western Sydney. Over 20 years she has been a director of a large range of public, private and not-

for-profit entities. In 2012, Ms Trainor co-chaired a review of the governance structure of the Australia Council. She

recently completed a M.A in Cultural and Creative Practice and is active across the arts and culture sectors in

helping reshape the NFSA’s role in the digital age.

Mr Wayne Denning

Mr Denning is a Birra Gubba man and the owner and Managing Director of Carbon Media, a wholly Indigenous-

owned multi-media production company which produces game shows for children, documentaries, live event

streaming and interactive websites. Mr Denning currently sits on the Brisbane Writers Festival Board and is the

chair of the Brisbane Festivals Indigenous Advisory Group. He has previously served as a member of the board of

the National Film and Sound Archive for three years to 19 December 2014.

Mr David Jones

Mr Jones is the Executive Chairman of investment firm VGI Partners P/L and was previously Vice President,

Global Corporate Development and Strategy, Better Place Inc. and Executive Director of Better Place Australia.

He is Chairman on Derwent Executive and is a non-executive director of EC English and Global Sources Limited

and Chair of the Audit Committee and member of the Investment Committee of EMR Capital, a resources-focused

investment firm.

Mr Jones held positions as Managing Director of CHAMP Private Equity, Executive Director, Australia/New

Zealand of UBS Capital and Division Director at Macquarie Direct Investment Ltd. He was a former Chair,

Treasurer and Councillor on the Australian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association Board and member of

the Beacon Foundation Board. Mr Jones has been a member of the Council of the National Museum of Australia

since 25 February 2010 and was selected as Deputy Chair by the council members during this time.

Mr Neil Peplow

Mr Peplow was the chief operating officer for the Met Film School in London, where he was responsible for the

oversight of all education and training program at the school. As a filmmaker, Mr Peplow has been involved in the

production of numerous successful feature film and television productions including Shooting Fish, Waking Ned

Devine, and Bright Young Things. Mr Peplow has a Master of Business Administration from the London Business

School and is an Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy, UK. Mr Peplow began his career at Ealing

Studios in London in the early nineties, he has since worked as the Head of Production at The Film Consortium in

London, as a media industry consultant and as Director of Film at the UK’s Creative Skillset. From 2011 to 2014,

Mr Peplow was the Director of Screen at the Australian Film, Television and Radio School.

Mr Michael Loebenstein

Mr Michael Loebenstein is an internationally regarded archivist and the Secretary General of the International

Federation of Film Archives, the peak international body for film preservation. Mr Loebenstein was appointed as

CEO of the National Film and Sound Archive in 2011 after an extensive and lengthy international search for a

leader with the qualities to bring much needed reinvigoration to this agency. Under his leadership, the National

Film and Sound Archive recently hosted the annual congress of the International Federation of Film Archives.