WIFT NSW team expands under Yolandi Franken

Top (from left) are Aska Karem, Bolude Watson, Yolandi Franken, Kathy Luu, Ljudan Michaelis-Thorpe and Nicole Pastor. Bottom (from left) are Karen Witt, Georgina Lloyd, Nicole Pesa, Vanessa Klingler, and Sally Williams.

WIFT (Women in Film Television) NSW has welcomed eight new team members as the state chapter seeks to broaden its influence.

LGBTQI+ advocate Nicole Pastor, grants manager Nicole Pesa, copywriter Karen Witt, Indigenous awareness representative Ljudan Michaelis-Thorpe, industry connect Georgina Lloyd, and diversity advocates Aska Karem, Bolude Watson, and Kathy Luu are part of an expanded team to be led by WIFT Australia NSW representative Yolandi Franken.

They join NSW Events team co-chair Vanessa Klingler and team member Sally Williams.

Franken, who recently took over from Megan Riakos as the NSW representative, currently holds the roles of NSW Board member, co-chair of events (NSW committee), interim secretary of WIFT Australia board, and chair of WIFT Virtual (national).

She said the NSW team was made up of members who had reached out and offered support and those that have been there since WIFT Australia was formed.

“There is strength in numbers and I surround myself with other strong women of WIFT who work alongside me, helping WIFT NSW make an even bigger impact,” she said.

“Each team member brings something unique and special to the table.”

WIFT NSW sits under the umbrella of WIFT Australia and is home to flagship programs, such as WIFT Virtual, Raising Films, and Mentor Her.

WIFT Australia is dedicated to achieving gender equality in the Australian screen industry through research, advocacy, education, and support for all identifying women and non-binary screen industry practitioners.

After the WIFT Australia AGM in November, there will be a NSW Chapter AGM to vote for an official committee, which is made up of volunteers.

WIFT NSW members over 12 months subscribed can be put forward, with nominations forms set to come out in mid-October.