Written by Shona Smith on Feb 3, 2020. Posted in General Interest

AFCI announce New Officers for 2020 Board of Directors

Tim Clark, film commissioner for Buffalo Niagara Film Office will serve as AFCI’s first newly-elected board chair since 2016. The new board sees returning members as well as two newly-elected members.

New board chair Tim Clark joined the AFCI board in 2018 and served previously as 2nd vice chair. Having led the Buffalo Niagara Film Office for more than a decade he has overseen production in Western New York State including the cities of Buffalo and Niagara Falls. "It’s a privilege to serve the members of AFCI as board chair,” said Clark. “AFCI represents more countries than ever before and I am committed to ensuring that members get the education, industry connectivity and guidance they need in our ever-changing industry. I look forward to working with AFCI President Jess Conoplia and our members to continue the high level of excellence that has been set by the organization over the past few years".

“I look forward to working with Tim because he understands our global vision and supports our focus on best practice for the screen sector,” said Conoplia. “I’ve seen first-hand his ability to get things done -- both locally and abroad -- and I’m delighted that we’re bringing AFCI’s 44th Annual Cineposium Conference to Buffalo Niagara in September under his watch.”

Marijana Stoisits of the Vienna Film Office returns to the AFCI board leadership as 1st vice-chair, Donne Dawson from the Hawai’i Film Office takes the 2nd vice-chair position. Returning board officers include treasurer Karen Carberry Warhola from the Maine Film Commission and secretary Virginia Pearce from the Utah Film Commission.

Two newly elected members, Bas van der Ree from the Netherlands Film Commission and Nina Parikh from the Mississippi Film Office join the eleven member board.

Board members re-elected for another term include Sigmund Elias Holm from the Western Norway Film Commission, and David Shepheard from the Vancouver Film Commission. They join returning (mid-term) members Silvia Echeverri from the Colombia Film Commission, and Andy Edmunds from the Virginia Film Office.

The board oversees a series of strategic initiatives designed by AFCI President Jess Conoplia to build on AFCI’s comprehensive restructuring that began in 2017. New initiatives for 2020 include engaging local consultants in key regions worldwide to support members and drive new member growth, launching an AFCI awards program to recognise achievements and advancements in diversity, screen tourism, community engagement and service by film commissions or film commissioners, expanding AFCI’s educational programming through industry partnerships and partnering with other organisations such as TIME’S UP Entertainment to conduct original research and help film commissions pursue best practices.

“The past year was a time of tremendous growth for AFCI, with a surge in new members and our release of the industry’s first global research report on best practice for screen sector development -- a project conducted by our Think Tank Affiliate Member, Olsberg SPI,” added Conoplia. “We also collaborated on events with other global entities such as the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and Women in Film and Television International (WIFTI). This year will mark a continuation and acceleration of such activities and AFCI’s expanded mission.”

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