(L-R): Russel Howcroft and Chris Oliver-Taylor. 

Australian Film Television and Radio School (AFTRS) council chair Russel Howcroft has been re-appointed for a second three-year term, while Fremantle Asia-Pacific CEO Chris Oliver-Taylor has joined the council.

Howcroft, recently announced as the new co-host of 3AW’s Breakfast program with Ross Stephenson, has an extensive industry resume that spans executive general manager of Network Ten, founding chair Think TV, inaugural chief creative officer at PwC Australia, as well as chairman of the Advertising Federation of Australia and CEO of leading advertising agency George Patterson Y&R. He has been a regular panellist on CJZ’s Gruen.

Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP said: “I am delighted that Russel Howcroft is continuing as Chair of AFTRS.  Mr Howcroft has significant creative industry experience and in his role as Chair he is making a valuable contribution to the education of Australia’s emerging screen and broadcast practitioners.”

Prior to his role at Fremantle, Oliver-Taylor was the MD of Matchbox Pictures from 2011-2018, overseeing projects such as the Australian Real Housewives franchise, Seven Types of Ambiguity, Barracuda, Safe Harbour, and Date My Race. During his tenure, Matchbox won 20 AACTA Awards, an International Emmy, nine Logies and nine Screen Producers of Australia Awards. He has also served as the ABC’s head of production, and worked in the BBC on shows such as Top of the Pops, The Generation Game, Match of the Day and Westminster Live

“We are delighted to have the brilliant Chris Oliver-Taylor join the Council. He brings incredible energy and enthusiasm–– and he’s going to make a really significant contribution to Council and the school,” said Howcroft.