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Dame Liz Forgan Will Leave Arts Council England Next Year - ArtLyst Article image

Dame Liz Forgan Will Leave Arts Council England Next Year

02-04-2012
 
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Chair to be replaced with one of Hunt's people in 2013

Dame Liz Forgan will not continue as chair of Arts Council England when her term ends in January 2013. The Department for Culture, Media and Sport made the announcement last week on their website. Forgan, who is the first woman to head ACE, has been in post since 1 February 2009 when she was appointed for a four-year period.Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt said: “Dame Liz Forgan has been an outstanding Arts Council chair, who has made a huge contribution to the arts in this country. I am very grateful to her for all her hard work, advice  and support, and wish her every success in her future endeavours.
Under the Arts Council’s Royal Charter, the organisation’s chair is appointed by the Culture Secretary, under the rules set out by the Commissioner for Public Appointments in the Commissioner’s Code of Practice (the OCPA Code).  The Code requires the appointment to be made on merit under a fair, open and transparent process. The role of the chair is to give strategic leadership to Arts Council England, developing its policies and acting as an ambassador for the arts.  The current chair is provided with remuneration of £40,000 per annum for a time commitment of approximately 60 days per year.

“The next chair of the Arts Council will have to steer the organisation and the sector through another challenging period, in particular in increasing the amount of private giving to the arts, and encouraging the sector to make the most of technological changes. I am confident that we will find the right person for the job, and confident that our arts and culture will remain the envy of the world.” The DCMS will start the recruitment process for the new chair after Easter. The current chair is provided with remuneration of £40,000 per annum for a time commitment of approximately 60 days per year.
The Arts Council has undergone serious restructuring during Forgan's tenure due to controversial government funding cuts, seeing its budget slashed from an annual grant of £449 million to £349 million by 2014. This will lead to a loss of more than 100 companies from its current portfolio of 850 regularly funded organisations (RFOs) by 2015.

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport is to launch a search for a new chair of Arts Council England, following a decision by Culture Secretary Jeremy Hunt not to reappoint the current chair, Dame Liz Forgan, when her term ends in January next year. Mr Hunt today paid tribute to Liz Forgan’s work in leading the Arts Council, and hailed her outstanding contribution to the arts.

Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport Jeremy Hunt said: “Dame Liz Forgan has been an outstanding Arts Council chair, who has made a huge contribution to the arts in this country.  I am very grateful to her for all her hard work, advice and support, and wish her every success in her future endeavours. “The next chair of the Arts Council will have to steer the organisation and the sector through another challenging period, in particular in increasing the amount of private giving to the arts, and encouraging the sector to make the most of technological changes.  I am confident that we will find the right person for the job, and confident that our arts and culture will remain the envy of the world.” Director of Tate, Sir Nicholas Serota, said: "I am deeply disappointed that Liz Forgan is not being renewed as chair of the Arts Council. She has led the council with real verve and conviction through a period in which cuts to arts spending could have resulted in the loss of major parts of our cultural landscape."

Dame Liz Forgan has chaired the Arts Council since 1 February 2009, when she was appointed for a four year period.  She will remain in the role until her tenure comes to an end on 31 January 2013. The Department for Culture, Media and Sport expects to start the recruitment process for the new chair after Easter.

It is unusual for an ACE chair to depart after one term. Both previous incumbents, Sir Christopher Frayling and Sir Gerry Robinson, were invited to extend their contracts. It is thought that the Labour appointed Director is too left of center for the job, by the right wing of the Coalition Government.


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