Copyright Licensing NZ Chief Executive stepping down later this year

After twelve years at the helm of Copyright Licensing New Zealand, Chief Executive/Mana Whakahaere, Paula Browning has decided to step down later this year.

​A message from CLNZ Board Chairperson Emeritus Professor Pat Walsh.

After twelve years at the helm of Copyright Licensing New Zealand (CLNZ), Chief Executive/Mana Whakahaere, Paula Browning has decided to step down later this year. Paula’s vision, commercial acumen and commitment to doing the right thing for New Zealand creators, have taken CLNZ from strength-to-strength during this time. Paula has made a significant and lasting impression on the Aotearoa New Zealand creative sector and on rights management internationally.

Twelve years of leadership
Under Paula’s leadership CLNZ’s licence offerings and its customer base has grown significantly – and the segments of the creative sector it represents have grown too. Over the last twelve years, licensing revenue has grown 26%. New licences have been developed to meet various organisations’ needs. In 2018, when visual artists lost their membership organisation, CLNZ stepped up to build a rights management offering for artists and a corresponding auction-house licensing scheme. The first payment through this scheme was made to artists in April this year.

Paula is an outspoken advocate for the creative sector and the rights of authors, publishers and artists. CLNZ has undertaken substantial advocacy work throughout her leadership, taking a joined-up sector response to the Government review of the Copyright Act, calling for creative rights to be properly valued; and identifying a need for sector insights, commissioning reports such as Writers Earnings in New Zealand. CLNZ has also been a voice for copyright education – most recently through its delivery of the Ministry for Culture and Heritage funded Creative Rights for Creative People workshops.

Under Paula’s leadership CLNZ’s strategic focus on the use of cloud technology, in a phased rollout of the MyCopyright portal, to pay rightsholders, and to manage rights and licensing has been transformational to its operations for both rightsholders and licence-holders.

Since 2010, CLNZ’s work developing the sector through its Cultural Fund, has also grown with the changing needs of the sector. Regular review of its grants and awards have ensured the programme it offers is fit for purpose. Most recently, a Partnership Fund was initiated to help provide opportunities for a new generation of writers, publishers and illustrators and encouraging applications that reach and engage diverse communities.

Towards a bright future
On behalf of the CLNZ Board I would like to thank Paula for her incredible passion, dedication and vision. She leaves a bright path ahead for the organisation. CLNZ has a strong, clear strategic direction – the development of new rights services, utilising cloud technologies and continuing creative rights advocacy are important elements of this. In addition, the team Paula has gathered around her are high-performing professionals who share her commitment to the sector and the rights of creative people – she leaves the organisation in good hands.

Paula will retain a close working connection with the wider creative sector in her role as Chair of WeCreate, the alliance of New Zealand’s creative industry organisations.

The CLNZ Board is currently working with Paula to identify, and roll-out, a process to appoint a successor to take CLNZ forward in its next, exciting phase.

-CLNZ Board Chairperson Emeritus Professor Pat Walsh

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