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General Manager, Woodfordia Inc.

Deputy Director, Woodfordia Folk Festival

Like the majority of QFF staff, Amanda came to her position after a long history of volunteering for the organisation, initially at the then Maleny Folk Festival in 1987 and then in a number of key roles leading up to the WI’s land purchase in 1994 and the festival’s subsequent move to Woodford and what would become the Woodford Folk Festival.

Amanda was appointed WI General Manager in 1997 and since this time has overseen the financial and people resource development of this unique arts organisation which now boasts 25 full-time staff, 120 casual staff and key contractors, over 2,500 performers and 3,000 volunteers. It has an annual turnover of $13M and delivers an economic impact to the region in excess of $30M. The festival has attracted an annual aggregate attendance of over 2 million patrons to its events since 1987.

Amanda is an enthusiastic leader who achieves through combining creative, practical and measurable approaches to community and cultural engagement. She has been a key creative and leadership figure in the WI’s successful Woodfordia cultural parkland project (with over $18M invested to-date), creator and manager of the unique WI business model and the Woodford Folk Festival. WI also produces the national regional touring programme Festival of Small Halls and The Planting – a festival celebrating innovation, environment and community.

In recent years the festival has developed its expression through a visual language with a major focus on site specific visual installations including large scale works with international artisan Wang Wen-Chih and Sydney based architect firm Cave Urban, to smaller scale venue façades and internal decor.

“We delight in imagining our patrons experiencing the unique places created within the festival. We hope our village is as much a visual inspiration as a musical exploration” says Amanda.

A day in the life of Amanda these days can involve anything from detailed spreadsheets, marketing development, strategic planning to painting a 8m tall pandal (venue façade for one of the 25 venues at the festival). Amanda’s credits her Fine Arts background to being the underpinning training for the problems solving that is required in managing a large scale, multi-dimensional event.

Amanda is an exceptional leader, an engaging public speaker and held in high esteem by her colleagues.