WIFT NZ Elections to The Board 2011 - Nominee's Personal Statements.

Posted Friday 01 Jul 2011

All candidates are listed by position nominated and then by alphabetical order.




Nominated for President/Auck Region Member and General Board Member.

Teresa was an Industrial Organiser for NZ Actors Equity. She held this position for 6 years and has worked for Unions for over 18 years. Her role involved the representation of actors in negotiations, mediation and also education about their rights with a general aim to improve the working life of performers in New Zealand. As well as representing actors she also built relationships with industry groups including Actors Agents, Directors, Producers & other workers representative bodies.  This experience has given her valuable lobbying and facilitation skills and has dealt with many of our local & central government M.P.s

She wants to continue to ensure creatives' issues are addressed across the industry and at a government level.

She maintains links  throughout our Maori & Pacific Island communities and is currently a member of Reo Whakahaere - the Maori Reference Group for Q Theatre, was a mentor for a Board member on the Atamira Dance Collective, current Board member of Touring Arts Charitable Trust.  Whilst not strictly film & TV, we are all aware of the massive cross over from dance & theatre.  Her and her mother are the Samoan Advisors for Shortland Street.

Empowerment is at the root of Teresa's work and to be involved in an industry group such as WIFT NZ is vitally important.

She is currently running  a pool hall & nightclub in K' Rd, employing actors as barstaff and continues to offer the venue to those in the Arts to help fundraise or use as a location for performance or film.


Nominated for President/Wgtn Region Member and General Board Member.

Deb Kelleher has been in production for 25 years and has been producing for 10 years. She has worked with TVNZ as a Producer on  entertainment "Dancing With the Stars, drama "Karaoke High" and editorial "Good Morning"  and also independently with Eyeworks TV "This Is Your Life" Sir Peter Leitch and Cloud 9's cult series The Tribe. More recently Deb has emerged as a digital producer providing content for Web.  She notes over the years that producing has become more about content providing and the platform in which it is broadcast is an ever changing domain.

Recently she produced the Rise Up telethon with Commotion TV broadcast on both MTS and live on the Web. Deb can offer insight to what is fast becoming a new place of work for the screen industries. She is a production power house and is at the forefront of the changing world of the screen industries.




Nominated for Auck Region Member and General Board Member.

Amanda is currently on the 2010 WIFT NZ board, serving at the Treasurer. Amanda is a Chartered Accountant with 15 years experience in a broad range of Media organisations, including multi-national television broadcasters and independent television production companies in both the UK and NZ.After spending 10 years in the UK, where she held posts in a range of organisations including Walt Disney and Chrysalis Media, Amanda returned to NZ first working for Telecom and Fairfax Media before joining Great Southern TV where she is head of the finance and corporate affairs. Amanda has in-depth expertise and knowledge in growing companies and supporting creatives in profiting from their artistic endeavours.


Nominated for Auck Region Member and General Board Member.

Hiona is an emerging Maori Writer and Director. She has spent over 15 years working in the Maori creative industries as a Producer, Director, Writer and Performer. Deeply dedicated to the development of Maori storytelling with a clear focus toward the expansion of Maori Cinema and Maori Broadcasting. Hiona is the former Executive Officer of Nga Aho Whakaari, during which time she facilitated the publication of "Koatataa Maori - Maori Protocol for Film and Television" and managed the MOU signing of "Te Paepae Ataata" between Maori Filmmakers and the NZFC. Hiona currently sits on the Executive Board of Nga Aho Whakaari and is also a member of the Maori Women's Welfare League.


Nominated for Auck Region Member and General Board Member.

As an editor with 30 years experience and having worked in Canada, Ireland, Berlin, Los Angeles and New Zealand, I feel that I have a lot to offer the Women in Film and Television New Zealand.

In addition to editing, I have worked as a Producer, Production Manager, Second Unit Director and successfully taught over 600 students both in Los Angeles and New Zealand, recently stepping down as Head of Post Production Department at South Seas Film and Television School in Auckland. This position encompassed rewriting the curriculum for Post Production, constantly updating the technical requirements, writing papers for both Post and Production necessary to support editing, along with the daily riggers of the working schedule. Supporting the students both technically, creatively and sometimes emotionally is all a part of the teaching process. Having dealt with many personalities and responsibilities, I have used my creative talent and abilities not only as a filmmaker, but also when overcoming obstacles and helping to raise the spirits and standards of work within the environments I have been associated with.

My hope is that I can continue this work for the Women in Film and Television New Zealand, helping to nurture and support the women of our industry.


Nominated for Auck Region Member and General Board Member.

Next year in 2012 it will 20 years in the Film industry for me. When I started out it was still a bit uncommon for a woman to work behind the computer compositing Visual Effects. Back then it was very much a woman in a men's world and I had to learn to communicate and develop my team skills to fit into a mainly male dominated industry.

While there are far more girls and women in the industry nowadays I do think I have a lot to offer, a lot of international Post Production History to share. I also think having someone from the post production industry as a representative for WIFT will add to the knowledge base since it tends to be more production orientated members.

Other strengths I would bring to the board would be experience in coaching, mentoring, training, business mentoring, an understanding of interactive work flows and transmedia and a vast network in the industry.

My current role as General Manager at Images & Sound entails business development, work flow improvements and internal coaching and mentoring for staff. Previous to that I have been for 9 years with Digipost as a VFX and online artist on initially Flame and then on Smoke (Highend VFX platforms).

As part of the business development and general education Images & Sound has put on various industry related events this year together with WIFT and SDGNZ.

My passion has always been to encourage and empower especially young women in the industry or in business. I would like to help create a more sustainable film and entertainment industry in NZ. Our market is at risk due to low budgets, low staff and crew salaries due to overseas price competition.

I would like to be part of the WIFT decision making team to help create more opportunities for women networking, growing and succeeding in our industry.


Nominated for Auck Region Member and General Board Member.

I have been a member of WIFT New Zealand for almost 15 years and, in that time, I have: served on the old WIFT Auckland Executive Committee and Honorary Board;

been New Zealand's representative on the WIFT International Board; chaired WIFT

Auckland and the 2004 WIFT International Summit Committee; and served 2 terms as

Chair of WIFT International. I am passionate about WIFT and feel that the role it

plays in the New Zealand Screen Industry is invaluable. Therefore, after a few years'

hiatus, I am putting myself forward for consideration for the 2011 WIFT New

Zealand Board.




Nominated for Wgtn Region Member and General Board Member.

I graduated from the NZ Film School in 2007 and was delighted to be the recipient of the Robin Laing Scholarship that year. Part of my scholarship was a free years membership to WIFT and I was inspired by the women I met and have been an active WIFT member ever since. I have participated in the majority of WIFT Wellington events over the past four years, assisting Catherine, Robin and Glenis with planning and preparation. I was invited onto the WIFT scholarship panel and for the last 4 years have helped with the decision process. I was a member of the Wellington sub committee (when it was in existence) and am regularly invited to The Film School as a WIFT speaker.

Since joining the industry, I have a worked across many productions, produced a few shorts, was part of the creative team behind Ot�ck Ot�ck Ot�ck Fall which won the Wellington 48hr final in 2009, and spent six months traveling solo in Europe last year. There are many brilliant WIFT women with decades more experience than myself, but what I'd like to bring to the table is the point of view of the emerging filmmaker. I want to see continued opportunities for learning. I personally have found the sessions on Social Networking for the Film Industry extremely helpful. I want to encourage more opportunities like these.

I would also like to make sure yearly events are continued such as the scholarship fundraiser and the Christmas party, these are important opportunities for networking and promotion.

My intentions with WIFT are not to make big changes, but to support and continue the recent success of WIFT events and opportunities for learning. I would also like to ensure WIFT continues to be a supportive environment for women to share, encourage and promote one another.


Nominated for Wgtn Region Member and General Board Member.

I have been a member of WIFT since the inauguration of WIFT Wellington back in 1993, and was part of the board who supported and administrated the merger to WIFT NZ. I'm passionate about the need to keep motivated and learning and see WIFT as a safe environment to build relationships within the industry. However I see more than ever that WIFT NZ must contribute a positive networking basis while advocating for, and supporting women across the whole of NZ's screen industries.

I am keen to continue to support WIFT NZ members on the board for another term to help with continuity for the new staff. However I'm acutely aware that some young new blood need to step up. I would be happy to be co-opted by the board and continue my role as NZ WIFTI representative -(Secretary)

The board have worked hard to bring you a united WIFT NZ, however we still need to find ways to be more effective with our local support and events while uniting our membership. A huge thank you to Catherine Fitzgerald who is stepping down as president. Catherine has done an extraordinary job guiding us though the transition from WIFT Wellington while supporting the big changes and new personnel.

As a board member I would like to encourage WIFT NZ to organise monthly events here in Wellington - perhaps the 1st Wednesday of the month. If there is nothing specific on the calendar I suggest we set up networking drinks. (Something we have done in the past) Perhaps on alternative months. That way, you as our membership, know that you can diary in that night after work and there will always be something to enjoy.  I would also push for  a sense of autonomy in Wellington and Christchurch with a budget to action an impromptu event and quickly get information to our members via the WIFTNZ office.

We must encourage the organisation to make WIFT NZ the most successful and valued screen organisation. We are motivated to develop seminars and events you will be keen to attend at affordable rates. We seek your input and look forward to hearing from you with ideas that will enhance our skills and allow us to enjoy being part of the WIFT community. There are some exciting events proposed and we are now on face book and twitter!

I have been in the industry twenty years working as a production manager and producer. I have an interest in three production companies combining my love of film, art and new media educational projects.

My governance experience includes 19 years on the Board of the Wellington Fringe Film Festival, two previous terms on WIFT Wellington, including past President for one year and one term with WIFT NZ. I'm currently the NZ WIFTI Representative.   www.wiftichapers.org


Nominated for Wgtn Region Member and General Board Member.

Film producer.

Founding Chair & Life member of WIFT.

Currently working in the Sales Department at the New Zealand Film Commission.

WIFT is at a significant point one year in from official amalgamation into a single entity and it seems a good time to look at how it's working.

My immediate interest as a potential Board Member is that for Wellington, amalgamation appears not to be working in the way we hoped and thought it would. This is no reflection on the efforts of the Auckland-based staff but more to do with the nature of the organisation and the impractical model of a centralised office responsible for organising regional activities. As a professional industrial organisation WIFT is charged with meeting the needs of both its industry and its membership - and these needs can vary from region to region just as the concerns and priorities of our international chapters vary. It has always been a strength of WIFT that it is flexible enough in its philosophy and practice to accommodate differing regional priorities within an international organisation with an over-arching aim.

In order to be effective WIFT needs a strong membership base across a broad industry spectrum. This spectrum is represented both professionally and regionally by the Board and ideally localised concerns and professional needs will be represented in annual social and professional membership programmes.  I don't think there's any doubt that this is what we aspire to do. But in order for this to happen more effectively and expeditiously I propose a change in administrative structure, with overall programming co-ordination carried out centrally while regional co-ordinators are responsible for the setting up and management of local events - this is especially relevant for spontaneous or opportunistic events such as a meet and greet with someone in town for a day or so.

Equally important, the regional co-ordinator or local Board member must have access to a small hospitality budget. Personally I am very unhappy to see members having to spend their own money to host events, even assuming they are reimbursed. This is not a professional expectation of people who are already volunteering hours of their time and is something easily fixed.

In these times of reduced sector funding, low production levels and pressure on production budgets as well as a national economic downturn, I would like to assist WIFT's attempts to ensure that it is responding to the needs of its membership in as efficient and cost effective manner as possible while showing consideration for those who give up their time to help make it work.




Janine trained with TVNZ as a producer and director during the 1980s.  Her career within TVNZ moved quickly and she was appointed Executive Producer of TVNZ's Children's Unit - a position she held for seven years.  When the Children's Unit moved to Wellington in 1998, Janine decided to stay in Christchurch to further her own company, Whitebait Productions.

Whitebait Productions has produced: preschool series Bumble, the Jessie.com series for WNTV, (which sold to Disney Australia, and English programmes for Japan); the interactive pop talent quest Wannabes for TV3; and the series Tuhono, a youth hip-hop show for Maori Television. In 2004 Whitebait Productions won the tender to relaunch What Now?, New Zealand's longest running and most successful children's programme.  Whitebait-TV also produces corporate and commercial work for companies such as NZ Cricket, Ian and Mary Grant at Parents Inc., and The Heart Foundation and collaborates with production houses throughout the country.

In 2009 Janine received the WIFT NZ Entrepreneurship Award, after she and her partner Jason Gunn opened their new 2036m2 television production and post production facility in Christchurch.