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The Royal Photographic Society appoints a new Director General
- Published 22nd August 2011
Bath, UK, 22 August 2011 -- The Trustees of The Royal Photographic Society today announced the appointment of Dr Michael Pritchard FRPS, 46, as its new Director General. He takes up the post on 20 September and will be responsible for managing The Society’s headquarters operations, working with the Council to lead the future direction of the Society, and for further raising the profile of the Society nationally and internationally. Michael Pritchard was with the auction house Christie’s between 1986 and 2007 where he was a director, responsible for photographic auctions as well as having wider international business responsibilities. He completed a PhD examining the British photographic industry in 2010. Most recently he has been teaching at De Montfort University, Leicester, and working for the British Library on the Kodak Historical Collection. He has had a passion for photography since he was 10 years old and worked as an assistant at a commercial and portrait photographic studio in Watford for many years. As an active photographer he has a particular interest in landscape photography. Michael joined The Society in 1979 as a junior member, achieving his Associateship in 1984 and Fellowship in 1986. He is deputy chair of the Research, Education and Application of Photography Distinction Panel and is active on the committee of the Society’s Historical Group.
He commented: “I am conscious of - but excited - to be stepping into the shoes of previous secretaries such as Roger Fenton and I know the Society staff, Council and membership will be supportive over the coming months. The Society has an incredibly vibrant and exciting programme of events across all areas of photography, and its annual exhibitions and the distinctions are now more popular than ever showcasing the highest standards of photography. I am confident that the Society is well-placed to evolve and to continue to embrace digital imaging-making alongside traditional skills. At a time when photographers’ rights and issues such as copyright are on the public agenda the Society is needed more than ever to act as a powerful voice for photographers and photography. I am confident that I can bring new skills to bear that will help it do this.’
In welcoming Michael Pritchard as the new Director General the Trustees also wish to record their deep appreciation of the work of the outgoing Director General. Stuart Blake’s knowledge of the Society and contribution – frequently beyond the call of duty - had provided The Society with much needed stability and prudent management following The Society’s move to Fenton House in 2004. Stuart originally joined The Society in 1990 as Finance Officer, before combining the role with that of Director General in 2004.
In July Stuart was congratulated on attending his 250th Council meeting and the Trustees are grateful to be retaining his experience and financial acumen as he maintains a part-time financial role prior to his retirement. He will receive an Honorary Fellowship at the Society’s Awards ceremony. Members will no doubt wish to join the Trustees in thanking Stuart and in wishing him well for the future.
Rosemary Wilman HonFRPS, President