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The Hon Peter Garrett AM MP
Minister for the Environment, Heritage and the Arts

Kathy Keele reappointed CEO of Australia Council

Media release
17 December 2009
PG/401

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Minister for the Arts Peter Garrett today announced the reappointment of Ms Kathy Keele as Chief Executive Officer of the Australia Council for the Arts for a further five years.

"Under Ms Keele's leadership the Australia Council has successfully delivered on its mandate to promote excellence, provide opportunities and foster appreciation of the arts in Australia.

"I am delighted Ms Keele has agreed to continue to lead the Australia Council during this critical period as we develop a national cultural policy and examine current arrangements for supporting artists and arts organisations," Mr Garrett said.

"Ms Keele was first appointed to the role of General Manager in 2007. During her first term as CEO she has implemented important reforms which have resulted in a more efficient, transparent and effective national arts agency."

Australia Council Chair James Strong welcomed Ms Keele's reappointment.

"Kathy has developed a strong and constructive relationship with the governing Council, the Government, and the wider arts sector, from urban to regional Australia. She has also forged a unity of purpose within the Council based on greater external focus and wider engagement."

Ms Keele brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to the Council. She was previously the Chief Executive Officer of the Australia Business Arts Foundation (AbaF) and is currently a board member of the International Federation of Arts Council and Cultural Agencies.

"I look forward to continuing to work closely with Ms Keele in her role at the Australia Council. The Council makes a tremendous contribution to our nation's cultural life by supporting the practice and enjoyment of the arts which, in turn, enriches all our lives." Mr Garrett said.

Each year, the Australia Council, through the Australian Government, provides more than $158 million in funding for arts organisations and individual artists across Australia.

"The Council has successfully managed the implementation of a number of the Government's election commitments including ArtStart grants for emerging artists, the Artist in Residence program, or 'AIR', in schools across the country and the Creative Communities Partnership initiative," Mr Garrett said.

The Australia Council for the Arts is the Australian Government's arts funding and advisory body. It supports Australia's arts through funding, strengthening and developing the arts sector.

For more information about the Australia Council visit: www.australiacouncil.gov.au .

Commonwealth of Australia