Intellectual Property Awareness Foundation appoints Gail Grant as CEO


MUMBAI: Film industry veteran Gail Grant has been appointed CEO of the Intellectual Property Awareness Foundation (IPAF). The purpose of IPAF is to raise public and industry respect for film and television content in Australia. Its vision is to increase awareness for the cultural, creative and economic value of the Australian film and TV industry through national consumer and educational initiatives.


Both the Australia Federation Against Copyright Theft (AFACT) and the Motion Picture Association (MPA) are founding members of IPAF. Current members include theatrical distributors (Motion Picture Distributors Association of Australia), home entertainment (Australian Visual Software Distributors Association), exhibitors (Greater Union, Hoyts, Village and independent cinema owners), Australia’s rental chain of local franchised businesses FE Group (Video Ezy & Blockbuster), pay TV company Foxtel, TiVo & Screenrights and many in-kind industry contributors.


IPAF works closely with film and TV production and distribution, cinema exhibition, home entertainment rental and retail and subscription TV.  The Foundation, through its initiatives in consumer and educational sectors of the community, aims to motivate a change in public attitude away from piracy. IPAF encourage supporting the more than 50,000 people employed in all aspects of the industry through the enjoyment of original and legitimate film and television experiences.


IPAF chair Maureen Barron said, "We have a wonderful film and television industry in this country which will either flourish with our support, or be damaged by on-going piracy. In the current environment it is vital that the educational and outreach work of IPAF succeed, and Gail has the skill, passion and commitment to lead the organization in this truly enterprising year."


"We welcome Gail to this important position and acknowledge the experience she can bring to this organization. The MPA is committed to the educational initiatives conducted by IPAF which help people to better understand the value of the contribution filmmakers make to our culture, our economies and our screen entertainment," said MPA managing director Asia Pacific Mike Ellis.


Australian Visual Software Distributors Association (AVSDA) CEO Simon Bush said, "We are excited that Gail has agreed to head up IPAF after a long and distinguished career in marketing roles for major film studios. Gail’s career makes her well placed to lead the Foundation to new heights with her industry contacts and insight as well as ability to run great campaigns."


Universal Pictures Australia managing director and chair of the Motion Picture Distributors Association of Australia (MPDAA) Mike Baard said, "The MPDAA welcomes Gail to the position and knowing Gail’s skill and passion we have high expectations for the year ahead. We wish Gail well and look forward to IPAF achieving its important goals and objectives."


Gail has previously consulted in the position of marketing director for Sony Pictures Home Entertainment, and from 1983 to January 2007 Gail worked with 20th Century Fox Home Entertainment in a variety of roles and responsibilities, including the position of marketing director and member of the Executive Team.