The Screen Producers Association of Australia has appointed Matthew Deaner as executive director.

Deaner, a lawyer with qualifications in economics and commerce, will replace long-serving incumbent Geoff Brown. Deaner most recently held senior policy and strategy positions with Screen Australia and prior to that, the Australian Subscription Television and Radio Association (ASTRA).

“After an exhaustive search we are delighted to have someone of Matthew’s experience and passion to help steer SPAA into the new converged digital media future that lies ahead,” SPAA president Brian Rosen said in a statement.

“With the Government’s Convergence Review and Cultural Review to be implemented, there is a momentous task ahead for SPAA to ensure that our screen industries are not sidelined and that Australian independent producers’ content is absolutely front and centre in the outcomes that emanate from these important reviews. We are at an important crossroads and are thrilled that Matthew will be leading the organisation through this next critical phase.”

Deaner said independent producers are responsible for creating the finest and most successful Australian content.

"Their work is not only key to the ambitions of the government’s cultural objectives, it is key to the business success of traditional and emerging content distribution platforms," he said in a statement. “There are significant challenges and changes ahead for the entire content industry. This is a time to be collaborative and energized. I’m delighted to be taking up this opportunity and look forward to working with the sector to ensure that Australian content continues to take pride of place on our screens.”

Brown has been working with SPAA for the past 16 years, including ten as its executive director. “We are sad to see Geoff retire but look forward to celebrating his substantial contribution to the industry at the upcoming SPAA Conference to be held in Melbourne, November 12-15,” Rosen said.

Deaner will commence his new position on November 12 and be based in Sydney.

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