Candidate 1 – Andrew Noakes

Financial Controller
Seconded by Callum Mcdougall

Dear Guild Members,

I am writing to express my strong desire to continue supporting the Guild as a board member. My extensive experience in the industry, combined with my commitment to our members' welfare and professional development, drives me to seek this role.

Over the past 40 years, I have progressed through various grades within the accounts department, culminating in my current position as Financial Controller. For the last 15 years, I have also had the privilege of co-producing the James Bond series with Eon Productions. More recently, Eon Productions has expanded into producing independent films, providing me with a broader perspective on the challenges and opportunities within our industry.

My tenure as a board member spanned over a decade, during which I was deeply involved in critical negotiations with PACT and BECTU. These negotiations covered various sectors, including construction, electricians, and ultimately, the comprehensive agreement for crew members. I believe these efforts have been instrumental in securing fair and beneficial conditions for our members.

Having taken a brief hiatus from the board due to the rotation cycle, I am now eager to re-engage and contribute once again. I am particularly passionate about addressing the pressing issue of the shortage of qualified crew members. I believe that our collective efforts have been invaluable thus far, and I am committed to continuing this work to ensure our Guild remains strong and supportive of all its members.

The achievements we have accomplished together are a testament to our collaborative spirit and dedication. However, the future presents new challenges that we must face head-on. I am confident that my experience, combined with my unwavering commitment to our Guild, will enable me to contribute effectively to our ongoing efforts.

Thank you for considering my candidacy. I look forward to the opportunity to continue serving our Guild and working alongside you all to navigate the challenges and opportunities ahead.

Candidate 2 - Benjamin Greenacre

Line Producer
Seconded by Lara Sargent

I am a freelance Producer, having been a Line Producer before that and a Location Manager in the dim and very distant past.   After years in London I’m now based in Bristol and I’ve been lucky enough to have done a considerable number of projects in the South West over the last decade.  I have been pleased and relieved to watch as the Guild has become far more aware of and then representative of those who work in television and more recently those who work outside London.  Over the last few years there’s also been also been a welcome push to create opportunities for those from underrepresented backgrounds.  I want to help drive these policies further.

The creation of the regional hubs and recent decision by the board to lower the regional membership rate is testament to a real commitment from The Guild the regions.  But there is so much more to be done.  When I suggest to regional crew that they should join the Guild their response is frequently that it’s only for those based in London.   I want to help the Guild change that attitude and make it the norm for everyone eligible, be they in Brixton or Bristol, to be a member.   Increasing the regional membership to include the incredible talent out here will be to everyone’s benefit.  

The training and recruitment of crew from underrepresented backgrounds on productions is vital but it is not easy.  Goals, policies and so on are helpful up to a point but with production teams already having an almost unsustainably high workload, this additional responsibility is incredibly problematic.  I’ve tried creating training schemes on various productions over the last 6 or 7 years with varying degrees of success so I have some idea of how hard it is.  I would like The Guild to look into practical frameworks for the provision of inclusive training and recruitment by productions.  Anything that might keep the additional work required by the crew to a manageable level and so increase the chance of successfully giving a chance to someone who might not normally get one.  Broadcasters and Production Companies have a responsibility to be inclusive but without either additional funding or practical support, the productions themselves will inevitably struggle to fulfil this responsibility.  I think The Guild can help here, both to continue to push for inclusivity and diversity in our industry and also to support, protect and enable its members who are on the sharp end trying to make this happen amidst the tsunamis of to-do lists that are their day to day jobs.

I would love the opportunity to be involved with The PGGB as it grows and develops over the next few years and if I can then perhaps to be a voice on the board both for the extensive talent in the regions and for those on the sharp end everywhere.  Thank you.

Candidate 3 - Ben Rimmer 

Line Producer
Seconded by Paras Parker 

It would be a privilege to contribute to the Production Guild and its members by joining the Board. My interest is not sudden, I’ve wanted to do this for several years. 

Having worked as a freelancer for 34 years, my desire to improve the freelance work experience and training opportunities for crew in HETV and Film remains as strong as ever. 

Briefly, I started as a Production Runner in Commercials in Soho in 1988 and went freelance in 1990 as a Location Scout. After 16 years as a Location Manager in Feature films and TV dramas, I joined the Production Guild in 2006, when I started working as a Production Manager. In 2010, I began Line Producing and have been a Line Producer, Co-Producer and Executive Producer in HETV and Feature films for 15 years. 

This experience at the coalface of production is valuable in terms of being able to share the ways that HETV and film projects are currently being influenced by both external and internal factors. 

Director and Cast notwithstanding, our most important resource during a Production period is the crew we hire. Ensuring safe and healthy working environments for all departments and providing a positive mental atmosphere in which everyone can thrive and give their skills unhindered, is a goal I set on every production. It has been hugely gratifying to see the emergence of mental health support in the industry, as this is such a determining factor in terms of wellbeing and productivity. I would like to see how this can be further strengthened to make this resource available on all productions. 

It is in the nature of a Line Producer’s role to, at least initially, deal with Human Resource issues when they arise. From experience, these issues are best met with compassion, understanding and fairness, followed by a determination to resolve them. I would appreciate discussing with other board members about their experiences and solutions. 

Diversity and inclusion have improved greatly since I began, thanks to the efforts of many members of the Guild. It is our continued responsibility to give the same chance to every eligible applicant for a role but it clearly needs more work in terms of reaching those who are unconnected to the industry but wish to work in it. 

I have nominated myself for a place on the PGGB Board to serve the needs of the members and thereby to help grow and improve the industry. The areas I would focus on would be: improving mental health in the workplace and thereby productivity; setting up a framework for independent productions that lack a Human Resources department; looking at how to reach under-represented groups who are interested in careers in HETV and Film but have no connection with the industry to help them join it.

Candidate 4 - Danny de Warren

Permanently Employed - Manager, Original Series Production, Netflix
Seconded by Tom Maguire

What makes me a suitable candidate for the PGGB board?
So far my career has carried me into many different parts of the film and TV business. On this journey I have met people from across many creative, technical, managerial and commercial fields that together comprise our film and TV community. As a newcomer with no industry contacts, I started my career as an intern and script reader, before becoming a personal assistant, a production company employee, then a freelancer, and later a producer, founder and studio executive. 

These roles have encompassed many disciplines - from development to production, finance, business affairs, post-production and VFX. They have also spanned the full range of budgets - from the micro to the ultra high-end. This variety of experience has given me a broad and nuanced understanding of the many challenges and opportunities being presented to our production community. 

Why do I want to represent you?
I want to grasp this opportunity to champion the interests of the production community and the creative work that we enable. This means confronting issues such as our industry’s culture, the wellbeing of our workforce, and the environmental and economic sustainability of our work. Alongside my fellow board members I want to advocate for PGGB members and the wider production community, working on your behalf to help ensure film and TV production remains a priority area within UK public policy. I want to strengthen the PGGB’s bridges with other industry bodies within film and TV and build new ones in adjacent creative industries. At a time of increasing convergence between creative sectors, it is more important than ever that we find a common language and discover ways to support each other’s shared interests. I will enjoy celebrating members who consistently achieve the highest standards of production, business and financial management, in film, TV and our adjacent industries, and facilitate learning opportunities from them. I look forward to continuing the many lively discussions I have had with members about creative and technical ideas, trends, technologies and legislation – and how they may (or may not!) enhance our work. 

If I am elected, I will consider myself a custodian of the PGGB and help steer its evolution alongside my fellow board members. To me this means safeguarding our mission while defining our role in the production industry of the future, always thinking long-term about the needs of members.

Candidate 5 – Elian Strong 

Production Supervisor
Seconded by Lisa Byrne

I am applying to the PGGB board, because I feel I have a wealth of experience in our industry and also in life that would contribute greatly. I am confident in expressing my opinions and would like to be in a better position to be heard. 

To give some context of who I am, I started in this industry at the age of 17. I spent many early years at the BBC, working for Head of Video Production, Head of Drama Series, Director of Television, amongst others roles, before moving into Drama Series as a Production Secretary and working my way up to Production Coordinator. I then went freelance, working in both TV and Film, before I took a 13 year career break to raise my son. 

I’m passionate about keeping Production the best that it should be. Not limited to, but including our processes and especially the progression of production crew through Production. Since returning to work, I have noticed a pattern of Location Managers and Unit Managers that have moved across to become Production Managers and Unit Production Managers. In this, we predominantly see male LMs & UMs taking those PM/UPM positions, which then reduces the opportunities for the predominantly female role of Production Coordinators to move up. Whilst these LMs and UMs have a lot of experience in most cases, this experience is not the detail of production. However, I am in supportive of crew moving departments, (I have done so myself when I could not work Production hours for a period of time), but I do feel that it should not be at the expense of people who have worked their way up through production; particularly in this instance where it can hold back women moving up. 

I am also very interested in exploring ways to support crew returning to work after career breaks, particularly women like myself, returning after raising their children. As a single mum, I found returning to our industry very challenging and I didn’t know where to get help. I decided that my best bet was to take a lower position than the one I left the industry with, as I didn’t really know what had changed and what tools I might be lacking; in short, I didn’t have the confidence or support to guide me. Of course, I soon realised that the most important aspect I had to offer was my experience and the ins.nc.ve solution to solve problems which comes from years of working in the industry. When you leave to have a family or any other reason for a break, it would be great to know there would be assistance in place for your return, both practical and emotional support but also help to build confidence. 

To conclude, my experience in the industry spans many periods and I have a very good lens on the ripples of changes that have taken place. I feel that with my history in our industry, drawing from both the past and present gives me a very good understanding of what the future could look like. I feel I would be a valuable addition to the PGGB board, and I would very much welcome the opportunity to be part of the team.

Candidate 6 - Georgette Turner 

UPM
Seconded by Bianca Gavin 

With 19 years of experience in the film and television industry, my journey has taken me from roles in location security and as a location runner to my current position as a Line Producer/Unit Production Manager (UPM). 

Throughout my career, I have demonstrated a commitment to the production community, as evidenced by my longstanding 10-year membership with the Production Guild. During my tenure as a location manager, I served as treasurer and an executive board member of the Location Managers Guild International. I also had the honor of chairing the location managers division of BECTU and acting as the UK location representative for the Major Motion Pictures Film Agreement, which was historically signed in the UK in 2018. I am eager to serve as a board member because I believe I can be a strong advocate for Location Managers and the Production crew. The challenges of the past year have underscored the importance of unity and proactive planning for the future. My background, being from a working-class and diverse community, fuels my passion for training and supporting individuals from underrepresented groups to gain access to our industry. Currently, I contribute to the PGGB DIAG committee, with a particular focus on the childcare credit initiative. I aspire to work closely with the Production Guild to develop and enhance the skills and talents of both current and future crew members. I aim to help implement sustainable and achievable goals for future productions. 

The Production Guild has been an invaluable organization in my career, led by influential figures in our industry. I am fully aware of the commitment required to be a board member and am dedicated to continuing to shape the guild’s future positively. Thank you for considering my application. I look forward to the possibility of contributing further to this esteemed organization.

Candidate 7 - Lorraine Edwards

Production Coordinator
Seconded by Tim Wellspring 

During my years as a member, the PGGB has been a key source of information, especially during uncertain times, a place of reassurance, allowing voices to be heard and to gain advice, and a hub to both network and learn. 

I cross paths with many individuals and companies during my working day, I’ve found that the most knowledgeable and talented people believe there is always something to learn and skills to master, and the PGGB is a wonderful resource for this. 

I enjoy audiovisual content from home and revel in a good cinema experience. I love learning through stories and being entertained via different genres and platforms. This is partly why my 20+ year career journey has been so varied, including: short film, low-budget independent film, high-budget studio film, lifestyle and shopping TV, entertainment TV, corporate video, and HE TV. Predominantly working in Production, I’m currently a freelance Production Supervisor while also producing smaller independent projects. 

Originally from East Anglia, I now live in London, also travelling back and forth to the Northeast, where I’m pleased to see the industry is broadening. I am very grateful for the incentives and infrastructure that have been created for our UK Film and TV industry. The stories we share, can build connections and influence for content makers and audiences around the world. I strongly believe that we can continue to strengthen our industry’s future by supporting each other: focusing on new entrants while respecting experience, representation with diversity and equality, focusing on positive mental health, investment in regional networks, and active sustainability and environmental management. All these attributes make creative, business, and moral sense as we continue to make and enjoy high-quality and worthy content. 

In mid-July 2022, I submitted a proposal to the PGGB to start a Sustainability group, other members had also shown a key interest. I am now honoured to be Vice Chair of our Sustainability Committee, which is running strong with an impressive and passionate group of industry professionals. I would love the opportunity to further contribute to the PGGB and help support our futures. I believe my strongest qualities include diplomacy, dedication, honesty, and empathy, which I wholeheartedly bring to any role I undertake, as well as a good sense of humour.

Candidate 8 - Marc Ronnie

Assistant Accountant
Seconded by Jo Burn

My name is Marc Ronnie and I am a freelance Assistant Production Accountant. I have been a member of the Production Guild since 2019 when I was lucky to be accepted on the APATS XIII course.

I am now a Full Member and would like the opportunity to work with the Board to improve working conditions for all working in the Film and TV industry and to ensure longevity and increase stability and security in the jobs market.

I have worked my way up to Payroll Accountant with the help of my amazing fellow Guild members. Along the way I worked as an Action Props Assistant so have seen and felt the challenges of the industry from the other side of the spreadsheet.

I want to represent all members of the Guild, not just my fellow accounting members. I believe that my recent entry to the industry gives me a fresh perspective on starting in the industry and how and where we can find the right people to join us.

In the relatively short period of time that I have worked in the industry I have seen it rapidly expand and contract (with Covid in early 2020 and the recent WGA/SAG strikes in 2023). I will encourage the Guild to work towards a more formalised support system for the lean times to ensure that we don’t lose valuable talent during short-term contractions. This can be achieved by furthering opportunities for training, guiding members towards suitable short-term alternative employment and towards financial assistance.

I also believe that we need to work with the next UK government and the relevant bodies to make sure that British studios and producers are given all the help they need to grow and thrive. This will help ensure the longevity of the UK jobs market.

I appreciate that many feel that the Production Guild is not representing members to extent that it could and that the interests of Business Partners seem to take increasing precedence. I agree with this sentiment, but also believe that the Guild has done, and continues to do, great work for its members and that we would be much worse off without it. I urge members not to leave and to encourage colleagues to rejoin so that we can build a stronger Guild for the future. 

I will work with the Guild for the benefit of my fellow members with a focus on the following: 

  • A better work-life balance for Guild members and wider crew.
  • Boost Guild membership so that we can be a greater force for change in the industry. 
  • Encourage skilled newcomers to the industry. 
  • Increase diversity of workforce and create a welcoming environment for crew from all backgrounds and of all physical ability and neurodiversity.
  • Future-proof the British Film/TV jobs market against potential reduction in foreign investment.
  • I will work with the Guild to ensure that current and lapsed members are contacted and that all levels of experiences and concerns are represented, recorded and addressed.

Candidate 9 - Roger Evans

Production Manager
Seconded by Chris Bunyan

I’m a freelancer currently working as a Unit Production Manager and Line Producer on High-End TV Drama and Feature Films including recent productions for Netflix and Amazon. 

Over the past decade, I have worked my way up through the production office roles, significantly enhanced by the comprehensive training courses provided by the Production Guild. These include: Production Manager Training, Line Producer Training and Finance for Production Management. Additionally, I have gained invaluable on-the-job learning from the collective experience of many inspiring and talented colleagues. 

Before venturing into production, I worked in the music industry in various capacities from managing bands to tour managing artists around the UK and Europe. These transferable skills proved invaluable when first working in production. 

It was an interest in acting that got me into this industry and whilst working as a Supporting Artiste on various productions, I gained firsthand insights into the functioning of a set and the myriad roles and departments involved. Subsequently elected to Equity and Bectu committees, I was part of the negotiation teams that worked on enhancing our current agreements. As such, I have a unique perspective on how to make the agreements work effectively from both the Producer and Worker point of view. 

Having been a member of the Production Guild for the past 10 years, a beneficiary of multiple training courses and having transferred into this industry later in life, I consider that my experience will make me a valuable addition to the board. 

My goal is to help new entrants and those with transferable skills achieve the high professional standards required to join the Guild, making them valued assets not only to our organisation but to the industry as a whole. 

I am a passionate advocate for the Guild, consistently encouraging talented colleagues and prospective junior members of my team to engage with the Guild and take advantage of the training and networking opportunities that it provides, whilst encouraging reputable suppliers and organisations to become affiliates and partners. 

As the volume of production gradually returns to previous levels of activity, we face many challenges and changes within our profession whether through technological innovations or new working practices. The volatile nature of our industry necessitates that the Guild remains at the forefront, continually representing and supporting its members by providing guidance through career development, ongoing assistance, and access to essential information and resources. 

If elected to the board, I will do my utmost to maintain the high standards of the organisation, representing and championing its members throughout the industry, here in the UK and abroad.

Candidate 10 - Ruby Avards

Financial Controller
Seconded by Michael Kilpatrick 

I have been an active member of PGGB since 2012, when I entered the industry through the 8th APATS programme. In that time I have delivered training in the form of the 2021 Stepping Up to Production Accountant scheme and ad hoc sessions for other APATS and SUPA courses. In 2018 I was the recipient of the PGGB Spotlight Award and I have mentored for PGGB on many other initiatives including SUPA graduates and the inaugural DIAG programme. I continue to mentor for some people in an unofficial basis as I feel very strongly about the industry being a supportive community. The stronger we are as a collective, the more enriching our careers can be. 

I would like to put myself forward for a position on the PGGB board as the industry is on the precipice of huge change. There are huge technology advancements that should be explored to help our workforce be able to realise a better work life balance. I believe there is a huge need for better accessibility to management and leadership training as people are stepped up into these roles without any training which I have seen first hand can lead to toxic work environments which should be avoided at all cost.

After 10 years freelancing, I joined The Walt Disney Company as Director, Production Finance for Lucasfilm. I took redundancy from that position at the end of 2023 and am currently involved in a Production Service Company start up. I am coming into my final year studying an MBA with Enterprise with Oxford Brookes University where I have been deep diving into Leadership, AI, Digital Transformation and Growth & Strategy to name a few. I feel I have a lot of skills and expertise I can bring to the board drawing on my freelance, corporate and now academic experiences which I believe with complement the current board. I am interested in not only representing Production Accounting but career development and CPD. It is not enough to just train new entrants but there needs to be a focus on developing the current membership too.

Candidate 11 - Sheerin Khosrowshahi-Miandoab

Production Supervisor
Seconded by Brian Donovan

The last three years I have been working as a production supervisor on Major Motion Pictures. Along with many other tasks my role is to negotiate crew deals and facilitate the making of the film throughout principal photography. 

I joined the production guild many years ago when I was an APOC and I wanted to be a part of the bigger picture. Now as a supervisor I want to be a part of the backbone of the industry and to find new channels of communication between productions, studios and the workforce. 

I’d like to be a part of the team of people shaping the industry with an eye on the film production side. With the MMPA in place there are still a lot of grey areas where productions and the people managing the industry are in need of support. I would like bring focus to helping streamline productions values on the ground and provide parity in responsibility and rates in the workforce for the ever-growing industry.

I gradually moved up the ladder in production from production assistant through to production supervisor over the last 17 years, learning how to understand crew and their job roles and skills, think ahead, find cut-throughs and put out fires. I have been lucky enough to work with and learn from incredible line producers and UPMs, to learn the system and put my learnings into practice. Recently in every department the junior crew have been moving quickly through the ranks. I’m interested in exploring more training schemes and qualifications to ensure the people we have working in the industry are fully qualified and responsible in the roles they are working in. 

In the recent couple of years, I have been working with ScreenSkills and LSA to help bring more trainees into the industry. For example, on the film Blitz (with thanks to Tim Bevan & Anita Overland) we hired 17 additional trainees via step up or trainee schemes with diverse backgrounds and every single person went onto other productions. Injecting diversity into the industry will take time, but with producers allowing that growth in budgets the industry can transform and allow expansion into the talent pool. 

As a female supervisor looking to step up to UPM and eventually line producer, I am also looking at strengthening parity in the workplace. My skillset means I am constantly speaking to department heads, supervisors and vendors and finding ways to support inclusivity from training, to job sharing, to paternity leave. 

I hope to be considered as a board member to represent the crew from a production background, but also as an organised & efficient individual who is excited to brain storm new ideas to progress the industry. 

Many thanks for the consideration, Sheerin

Candidate 12 - Steve Clarke Hall

Producer
Seconded by Brian Donovan 

I have been working in the film and TV industry for around 50 years. I set up my Company, Skyline Films in Edinburgh, moving to London when Chanel Four came on the scene. My experience as a producer covers Low Budget Indie Films, MMP Productions, Documentaries, TV Series, both Broadcast TV and HETV Streaming shows. 

Last year I decided to step back from full time “hands on” Producing and Currently I am doing a lot of teaching (for Guild and others) and Production Consultancy. Right now I am involved in helping to set up a number of Film and TV projects. 

Now I have more time I would like to find ways to use my experiences to help encourage diversity. I would want to devote time to supporting regional development, encouraging mentoring and opening up opportunities for people to develop skills to maximise their potential. As an occasional Tutor on some Guild Courses I would like to use some of this experience to work with the Guild Teams to develop and set up new Training initiatives. 

I would also like to see if there was a way of Guild members of communicating their views effectively with PACT and influencing future PACT/BECTU negotiations.

Candidate 13 - Valeria Bullo

Permanently Employed
Seconded by Steve Clarke Hall 

I am writing to express my strong interest in joining the Board of the Production Guild of Great Britain. With a comprehensive background in physical production in both film and TV, I am eager to contribute to the Guild's mission to uphold and enhance the standards of our industry. 

Over the past 17 years, I have had the privilege of working my way up the production ladder within both film and TV. My experience spans from Production coordinator to Executive Producer and Producer. My extensive production experience has equipped me with a deep understanding of the complexities and demands of our field. I have consistently demonstrated my commitment to maintaining the highest standards of integrity and responsibility in all my professional undertakings having worked on independent features and big studio productions. 

As a dedicated member of the Production Guild of Great Britain, I have always admired the Guild’s efforts to promote excellence and innovation. I am particularly grateful for the PGGB’s role in advocating for our industry. I know the guild has its member’s best interest at heart and has supported many of the causes that I feel passionately about such as wellbeing, mental health and inclusion. I am confident that my production experience combined with my skills in these areas would enable me to effectively contribute to these critical efforts. Throughout my career, I have been passionate about facilitating change and improving conditions for those working behind the scenes. I have organised and participated in numerous workshops, seminars, and industry panels, sharing insights on important initiatives, practices, and innovations. During my tenure at the Film and TV charity I was responsible for the development and creation of the Whole Picture toolkit which was co-designed with industry for the industry. I have continued to work in this capacity, always trying to place the welfare of our workforce at the forefront. 

Having worked both as a freelancer in physical production and in house as a Production Executive, I have stayed abreast of the latest developments and changes in our industry. I am excited to leverage my experience and I am committed to promoting this culture of knowledge-sharing within the PGGB. If given the opportunity to serve on the board, I would prioritise the interests of the Guild and its members. I am keen to engage with the membership and other industry organisations to foster supportive and collaborative environments. My goal is to help guide the future of the PGGB, ensuring that it remains a dynamic and influential body within the industry. In particular when it comes to inclusive working practices such as mental health and wellbeing which is hugely broad. Moreover, I am excited about the prospect of working alongside fellow industry professionals to address the challenges and celebrate the triumphs of our industry. I am enthusiastic about the opportunity to share my knowledge and expertise, and to be part of the meaningful changes within both the PGGB and the broader industry. 

Thank you for considering my nomination. I am looking forward to the possibility of contributing to the continued success and growth of the Production Guild of Great Britain. 

Yours sincerely, 
Valeria Bullo 

 

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