Nadine Dorries, the secretary of state for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport has announced the appointment of two new members to the BFI’s board of governors, chaired by Tim Richards, who worked closely with DCMS on the recruitment process. Dr Romana Ramzan, games industry pioneer, is the BFI’s Scotland governor, and leading lawyer Anwen Griffiths has been appointed the BFI’s Wales governor. Both members have been appointed for a term of four years commencing 9 May 2022 until 8 May 2026.
The secretary of state has also reappointed Robin Saunders, Andrew Smith and Phil Stokes to the board of BFI governors for a term of four years commencing on 9 May 2022 until 8 May 2026.
Tim Richards, BFI chair said “I am delighted that the secretary of state has appointed Anwen and Romana to the BFI board. They will both lend their extensive expertise and experience at a crucial moment for the organisation. As we shape our new strategy for publication this autumn, their contribution will prove invaluable. Following on from recent appointments, they will significantly strengthen an already distinguished board. I look forward to working with them in the future.
The reappointment of Robin, Andrew and Phil, will ensure that a wealth of skill, experience and knowledge has been retained. Their counsel and guidance since their initial appointment in 2018 has been critical, and all three played a pivotal role in safely shepherding the BFI through the pandemic. As chair, I am delighted that the BFI will be able to draw upon their experience for a further four years.”
The latest BFI governor appointments follow last month’s announcement of five new governors to the BFI board: Monica Chadha, board advisor and consultant; Elizabeth Karlsen (Carol, Made in Dagenham, Little Voice), producer and co-founder of Number 9 Films; Laura Miele, executive vice-president and COO of Electronic Arts; Scott Stuber, head of global film at Netflix and writer, producer and director Edgar Wright (Baby Driver, Shaun of the Dead).
Anwen Griffiths is a partner at Lee & Thompson LLP, a leading law firm for the media, technology & creative industries. With a background in film production, Anwen has over 25 years of experience and specialises in advising on all legal and commercial aspects of production and finance across the screen sectors — film, television and games. She represents many of the lead financiers and producers in the industry.
Anwen has also been heavily involved in supporting public funders in the growth of indigenous talent, having previously worked at the BFI and spent six years as a member (and subsequently vice-chair) of Ffilm Cymru Wales, the delegate for National Lottery Funding in Wales, with specific focus on promoting a sustainable sector and culture.
Dr Romana Ramzan
Dr Romana Ramzan is a producer at the BAFTA-winning No Code Studio in Glasgow, Scotland. Over the past decade, Romana has demonstrated a commitment and desire to drive forward changes in the industry to make it a safer and more welcoming space for people from underrepresented groups through her advocacy work. She has been at the forefront of driving innovative initiatives, within the industry and academia, that have demonstrated success nationally and internationally.
Romana was one of the main founders, and organisers of Scottish Game Jam, she was previously a director of the Global Game Jam and has also served on the BAFTA Scotland Committee for Games. She was one of Develop Magazine’s “30 Under 30” and in March 2014, Romana was awarded the Asian Woman of the Future Award at the Scottish Asian Women’s Awards. Most recently, Romana was named as one of the Top 100 Women in Games in the UK by MCV.
Robin Saunders is managing partner of Clearbrook Capital Partners, a private investment and advisory group working with growth companies across a variety of sectors, including entertainment, business services, real estate, Fintech and asset management.
Prior to founding Clearbrook, Robin was a corporate banker leading global teams specialising in securitisation and principal finance within banks including Citigroup, Deutsche Bank, and WestLB. She has served on numerous boards in retail, entertainment, financial services, healthcare, consumer products and utilities sectors. She has also served on the board of the UK Government’s industry regulator Office of Rail and Road.
Robin is a visiting fellow of the Said Business School at the University of Oxford, a commissioner of the US-UK Fulbright Commission and an enthusiastic supporter of arts and education organisations.
Andrew M. Smith OBE DL joined the Pinewood Studios Group in June 2008 as corporate affairs director. Synonymous with world class British and international productions, the Pinewood Studios Group is home to some of the most successful feature films and TV shows of all time, including James Bond and Star Wars.
Andrew is chair of the Buckinghamshire Local Enterprise Partnership; a member of BAFTA, the British Film Commission Advisory Board, the British Screen Forum, the Department of International Trade Creative Industries Trade Advisory Group and a governor of the British Film Institute. In June 2021 Andrew was made a deputy lieutenant of Buckinghamshire and in January 2022 was awarded an OBE in the Queen’s 2022 New Year’s Honours for services to ‘Business and the British Film Industry’.
Phil is a partner with PricewaterhouseCoopers. He has an extensive background in working with, auditing and advising film and media companies. He led PwC’s entertainment and media industry group in the UK for twelve years to 2017 and its EMEA Telecoms, Media and Technology practice from 2011 to 2015.
He founded and led the firm’s global Digital Transformation group, responding to the impact of new technologies and changing consumer behaviours across all industries. He advises companies and charities on financial controls, risk management, corporate governance and financial reporting.
Phil is a partner in The Clive Barker Archive and has co-authored several books with and about the author, artist and film-maker, Clive Barker. He is a trustee of Groundwork London, a school governor, a commissioner on the Durham Commission and chairs the BFI’s Audit, Risk and Governance Committee.