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News February 3, 2022

Maria Amato is WIN’s first female chair

Senior Journalist, B2B
Maria Amato is WIN’s first female chair

Maria Amato is named as chair of Worldwide Independent Network, the global organisation supporting and developing independent music trade associations across the globe.

With her appointment, Amato is both WIN’s first female chair and its first from the southern hemisphere.

Amato, who, in her day-to-day runs the Australian Independent Record Labels Association (AIR) as Chief Executive, is one of several new appointments to the WIN board, which includes the three new directors Jeffrey Chiang (Fluxus Music/LIAK, South Korea), Paul Pacifico (AIM, U.K.) and Sandra Rodrigues (ABMI, Brazil).

They replace outgoing directors Carlos Mills (ABMI, Brazil), Chan Kim (Fluxus Music, South Korea), and Kees van Weijen (IMPALA, Europe).

Former co-chairs Mark Kitcatt (Everlasting Records, Spain) and Richard Burguess (A2IM, U.S.), along with Oliver Knust (IMICHILE, Chile), continue to sit alongside Amato on WIN’s Executive Committee.

“It is an honour to be elected as Board Chair for WIN,” comments Amato in a statement. “The independent music sector is filled with talented entrepreneurs who strive to rise above challenges and limited resources to create global paths of success on their own terms. It is resilient and lobbies continuously to protect the interests of copyright holders, to promote a level playing field, and to effect positive change. I look forward to exploring opportunities for growth and collaboration in the year ahead.”

British independent music legend Martin Mills, founder and Chairman of the Beggars Group and former WIN chair, praises the skillset of the organisation’s incoming chair.

“Today’s news marks the first time that WIN has been chaired both by a woman, and by someone from outside Europe and the Americas,” he comments. “Combined with the just-announced formation of the new Turkish trade association, this speaks volumes about the progress of the independent movement worldwide.”

Amato slots into the WIN role with 25 years’ experience across the arts and not-for-profit sector, specialising in finance and business management through her own consultancy firm, Results Management.

Alongside her duties as AIR CEO, she runs its Women in Music mentor program, aimed at empowering women in the Australian music industry to progress their careers and leadership aspirations.

WIN, the global forum for the professional independent music industry, was established in 2006 as a response to business, creative and market access issues faced by the indies.

Its board is comprised of representatives from independent music companies and trade bodies in 13 territories around the globe.

Board members are nominated by member associations from each geographical bloc and sit for one year, with the option to stand for re-election at the end of their term.

The full 2022 WIN board is (in alphabetical order):
 
Europe
Francesca Trainini (PMI, Italy)
Jörg Heidemann (VUT, Germany)
Mark Kitcatt (Everlasting Records, Spain)
Michel Lambot (PIAS, Belgium)
Paul Pacifico (AIM, UK)
Observer: Helen Smith (IMPALA, Europe)
 
North America
Garry West (Compass Records, USA)
Gord Dimitrieff (Aporia Records, Canada)
Lisa Levy (Robbins Entertainment, USA)
Richard Burgess (A2IM, USA)
Zena White (Partisan Records, USA)
Observer: Jason Peterson (GoDigital Media Group, USA)
 
Rest of World
Jeffrey Chiang (Fluxus Inc/LIAK, South Korea)
Maria Amato (AIR, Australia)
Oliver Knust (IMICHILE, Chile)
Sandra Rodrigues (ABMI, Brazil)
Takuya Yamazaki (IMCJ, Japan)
Observer: Dylan Pellett (IMNZ, New Zealand)

This article originally appeared on The Industry Observer, which is now part of The Music Network.

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