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Grierson Trust appoints Sylvia Bednarz MD as Jane Callaghan steps down

The Grierson Trust in the UK has appointed Sylvia Bednarz as its new MD, taking over the reins from Jane Callaghan who is retiring later this year.

Sylvia Bednarz

The Grierson Trust was established in 1972 in memory of pioneering Scottish filmmaker John Grierson. It seeks to promote and celebrate documentary film and television production through screenings, workshops, training and mentoring schemes.

Bednarz will take up her new role in mid-September, ahead of the 50th anniversary Grierson Awards.

The exec has worked in several roles across the documentary sector including film and TV production, commissioning for online and TV and film festivals. She joins The Grierson Trust from Sheffield DocFest, where she has been partnerships and operations director, overseeing operations, production, finance and HR departments.

Her role involved securing new grants and sponsorship funding annually from over 60 UK and international partners, including the BFI, the Arts Council, the BBC, Channel 4, ITV, UKTV, the Guardian, ESPN, Netflix, Amazon Studios, the British Council, National Geographic, Canon and BAFTA, as well as several film institutes and embassies.

Lorraine Heggessey, chair of The Grierson Trust, said: “Sylvia is a fantastic appointment. She has the perfect combination of experience, contacts and knowledge of factual filmmaking to lead The Grierson Trust through the next phase of its development.

“She will build on the excellent work of the current team, as the trust continues to champion the art of the documentary through the annual awards for excellence as well as growing its reputation as a training organisation that nurtures new talent, opening the door for underrepresented groups.”

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