UNIC Launches Ground-Breaking Mentoring Scheme

(June 22, 2017) – The International Union of Cinemas (UNIC) has today launched its Women’s Cinema Leadership Scheme, a one year pilot mentoring programme for women in cinema exhibition.

The programme will provide six rising female European cinema professionals with the unique opportunity to network with and receive 1-to-1 career advice from a group of senior female executives recognised for their leadership and business success across the wider cinema landscape.

Some of the most successful women leaders from the industry have joined the scheme as mentors, including: Edna Epelbaum – Swiss cinema operator and President of the Swiss Cinema Association; Montse Gil – Vice-President and General Manager of Paramount Pictures Spain; Veronica Lindholm – Managing Director at Finnkino, Finland; Corinne Thibaut – International Director, Cinema & Leisure at Coca-Cola, based in Belgium; Dee Vassili – Executive Director – Group HR at VUE Entertainment International, UK; and Michelle Walsh – Chief Operating Officer at VOX Cinemas, United Arab Emirates.

The programme represents a key element of efforts by UNIC to address the current under-representation of women in decision-making roles in cinema exhibition.

Welcoming the launch of the programme, UNIC President Phil Clapp commented:

“More widespread representation of women at senior levels in our industry is not just a matter of fairness; it is also the key to business growth and better governance. There is clearly much that can be done to encourage and empower emerging female professionals in cinema exhibition, in particular through identifying role models and establishing support mechanisms for high potential female talent.”

In launching this pilot, UNIC hopes to be helping to take some small steps in addressing this issue. We don’t pretend it will be all of the answer. But we hope it will be a beginning.

We are truly grateful to all the mentors and mentees involved in the programme and wish them an exciting and empowering next 12 months.”

UNIC Women’s Cinema Leadership Pilot is a pan-European, cross-sector programme, involving nine companies across eight countries.

The International Union of Cinemas (UNIC)
UNIC – the International Union of Cinemas – represents the interests of cinema trade associations and cinema operators covering 36 countries in Europe and in neighbouring regions.

About the Programme
UNIC Women’s Cinema Leadership Programme is a 12-month pilot initiative who will see 6 senior female industry executives each mentoring an ‘up and coming’ female professional currently employed within a European cinema company (which is a direct or indirect member of UNIC). Besides 1:1 monthly mentoring, the scheme will also involve job shadowing exercise for mentees, networking opportunities and workshops.

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