Our board of Trustees has confirmed that Marcus Ryder MBE has been appointed our new Chief Executive Officer
Marcus Ryder has more than 25 years’ experience working in the media. Most recently he was Head of External Consultancies at the Sir Lenny Henry Centre for Media Diversity, set up to explore and increase diversity across the media industry. He has worked around the world and previously, was a senior executive at the BBC, winning awards from BAFTA, the Royal Television Society, and the Foreign Press Association. He is also the Chair of the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA) and is currently a trustee of the Press Pad Charitable Foundation. In 2022, he was named one of the 500 most influential people in the global film industry by Variety, and this summer he is to be awarded the prestigious Percy Qoboza award in the US by the National Association of Black Journalists as one of its Foreign Journalists of the Year.
Marcus Ryder joins the Film and TV Charity as it ramps up support for industry workers facing uncertainty caused by the cost-of-living crisis and wider industry factors. Having uncovered a mental health crisis in the film, TV, and cinema industry in 2019 with its ground breaking Looking Glass research, the Charity now works to enable the mental, social, and financial wellbeing of everyone working in production and other behind the scenes roles across the industry. It also partners with other industry players to bring about structural change and to remove barriers to success.
Recent launches and future programmes
In recent years, the Charity has launched its free, 24/7 Film and TV Support Line, the Bullying Advice Service and a range of services and resources to enable good mental health and to tackle some of the most pressing issues facing industry workers. It offers cash grants and invaluable advice and guidance to those with urgent financial need. In 2022 it also launched the Whole Picture Toolkit to embed good mental health practices in productions. It is currently developing an Impact Partnership Programme, to launch in early 2024, to develop support, resources, and access for Black and Global Majority industry workers. During the pandemic, the Charity helped more than 7,000 people, distributing over £5million into the hands of those whose livelihoods had been affected.
Talking about his appointment, Marcus Ryder said: “The Film and TV Charity is an incredible source of support for people working behind the scenes across the film, TV, and cinema industry, acting as a vital enabler for those facing disadvantage, financial hardship and poor mental health. It is recognised throughout the sector for making a significant contribution to the health and happiness of people working across the industry, and to its future sustainability, and I have admired how, through its research work, it has done much to shape the debate about how we treat the brilliant people who form the bedrock of the UK’s creative sector. The organisation and I also share a deep-seated understanding that the Charity will only be able to fulfil its core aims if it helps the industry address issues of equality, diversity and inclusion. I cannot wait to get to work to shape and implement a shared, ambitious strategy to make further strides across all of these priorities.”
Marcus Ryder will assume his new role in the early autumn. He replaces Alex Pumfrey who stepped down as CEO earlier this year.
Chair of Trustees
The Charity’s Board has also announced that Claire Tavernier has been appointed as the organisation’s new Chair of Trustees with immediate effect. Tavernier joins the Board with more than 20 years of experience driving the growth and performance of a wide range of media and digital enterprises. She was previously Global Head of Digital at Fremantle, Managing Director of a multi-channel YouTube network, and CEO of media intervention NGO, Girl Effect. She is currently also Chair of Trustees at Charity Digital, an organisation that has helped more than 400,000 charity workers embrace a digital-first approach, and is a non-executive director at the BBFC and a Trustee of the Institute of Imagination.
Tavernier said: “I am delighted to join the Film and TV Charity as its new Chair of Trustees. I have watched with admiration as the organisation has tackled some of the industry’s most complex issues and constantly learnt and adapted in an ever-changing environment. There is still much more to be done, and the Charity has an ambitious strategy to further the support it offers the industry. I am looking forward to working with the Trustees and the Charity’s brilliant team to continue their exceptional work. I’m also thrilled to welcome Marcus as our new CEO and work together as we prepare for our centenary year. I want to express my gratitude to the team at the Lenny Henry Centre for their grace and warmth during this transition. Lastly, on behalf of the Board of Trustees, I extend my deepest thanks to Cameron Saunders and Andrew Wilson-Mouasher for their outstanding work as interim chairs of the Charity over the last 12 months.”
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