Ausdance National Council President’s Report – April 2018

It is with great excitement that on behalf of the Ausdance National Council, I am pleased to announce that the recruitment process for our new Executive Director has been completed, and this week we welcome Kerry Comerford to our Ausdance community! Kerry is an exceptionally experienced senior executive and CEO who has worked for more than 30 years across the global arts and entertainment industries.

Her extensive experience in small-to-medium arts organisations in Australia through to the global likes of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s The Really Useful Group Asia Pacific, provide Ausdance National with a wonderful platform through which to lead the work towards our refocused vision. With an early passion for dance and previous experience working with the both the art form and many artists within the sector, Kerry will use her leadership, producing, directing and board experience to work closely with the dance sector and our other arts sector colleagues to best represent and advocate for dance in Australia.

With Kerry now taking over the leadership of Ausdance National as Executive Director, this will be my last formal President’s Report for our monthly e-news. I look forward to supporting Kerry and the staff, volunteers and broader Ausdance network from more of a ‘behind-the-scenes’ Board position. A big thank you to the Ausdance network, dance community and broader arts sector for all the advice, encouragement, and collegial support that has been provided to both myself and the Board during the past 13 months! We look forward to working with you in a slightly different, although still 100% committed, capacity moving forward.

In the interim, advocacy work has been ongoing. Ausdance National will be representing the sector at the upcoming Industry Roundtable being held by Live Performance Australia in Melbourne on ‘Education and Training Resources to prevent workplace discrimination, harassment, sexual harassment and bullying’. This is a result of the #metoo and #timesup movements, and will be an important opportunity for the broader arts sector to discuss the way forward on this critical issue. Additionally, Ausdance National continues with its role as one of the inaugural members of the Australian Alliance for Wellness in Entertainment Advisory Committee Meeting with the next meeting being held in Sydney in late April.

Finally, the Ausdance National Annual General Meeting will be held in Sydney at the Ausdance NSW meeting room on Sunday 13 May at 10 am. We look forward to having as many members attend the AGM to be able to meet our new Executive Director, hear about the all of the various achievements in 2017—our 40th Anniversary year, in addition to receiving an update on all the exciting plans ahead for Ausdance National! We look forward to seeing you all there.

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