John Swainston joins AIPP board

John Swainston has been co-opted by the AIPP board as a new board member with immediate effect.

John Swainston (Pic by Gina King.)

John was co-founder and managing director of then Nikon distributor, Maxwell for 24 years, prior to Nikon Australia forming in 2006.

Until 2015, he was senior vice president of DayMen, owners of the Lowepro and Joby brands, responsible for international distribution in Asia and Europe.

He has an illustrious record in industry affairs. He is a past president and treasurer of IDEA (formerly PICA) and is currently an advisory board member of the Head On Foundation. He has also held the role of deputy chair of the Australian Centre for Photography.

He presented the Nikon Walkley Australian Press Photographer of the Year Awards for the last 19 years and has been an international keynote speaker in Australia, New Zealand and the USA.

The national president of the AIPP, Vittorio Natoli, said John Swainston, who is also an Honorary Fellow of the AIPP, has the experience and skill required for the role.

‘Good governance is best achieved when a board has diversity in age, gender and skill sets.

‘John brings to the role a wealth of experience, not just in the photographic industry, but also in business governance, senior management and entrepreneurship,’ he said.

John is also an active member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and the Australian Institute of Management. He said the profession of photography is undergoing ‘profound changes’.

‘I see education – in both business and craft – to be a vital differentiator for the AIPP.

‘In coming years I believe the customer base for pro photography services will have its best opportunity for sustainable growth through marketing these differences.

‘I hope my skills will specifically add to the financial strength of the organisation, while delivering enhanced value in membership to such a diverse group of creative practitioners,’ he said.

He currently runs his own business advisory consultancy, while also writing a book – An Australian Point of View – a series of interviews with leading Australian photographers about their work.

The AIPP Board for 2016/17 is: Vittorio Natoli (President); Melinda Comerford (Chairman); David Glazebrook (Treasurer); Kylie Lyons; Nick Ghionis; Paul Atkins; and John Swainston.


6 thoughts on “John Swainston joins AIPP board

  1. Cogratulations John on your appointment. I feel that your quote is spot on.

    ‘I see education – in both business and craft – to be a vital differentiator for the AIPP. In coming years I believe the customer base for pro photography services will have its best opportunity for sustainable growth through marketing these differences’.

  2. Thanks for those kind words one and all. I’ve known all of the Past Presidents over the last thirty five years or so. What a heritage you have bequeathed those who follow. The Institute today has to operate, as do all photographers, in a very different and much tougher financial environment than in days gone by. My point about education goes further than both technical and business skills. In Commercial markets, in Media, in Photo Art, and videography, alternative means of getting messages across for advertisers and fashion brands now exist that vie for the same ad dollars, page impressions or video clips our members create. Photo galleries have been closing all over the country. In short we are all under pressures of change.

    After a couple of Board Meetings I am very heartened by the enrmous commitment of fellow Board members, and a growth of active member-help-member actitivity in the AIPP Community Facebook pages. Because that’s where membership really makes a difference. Shared expertise, mutual support and continuous learning about adaptability. There’s much to be done. But as we have seen with today’s further sad news about Fairfax journalists losing their jobs, nothing is certain any more. That’s why there’s never been a more important time to be involved in the AIPP if you care about the future of your prfession, whatever your field of imaging specialisation. If we are collectively to make the future of professional photography strong, relevant and superior in product offering, it will only be when we all speak from a strong unfied platform. I know all of us serving on the Board are keen to hear from members about their needs from the organisation. But we also want to hear from past members who have, for whatever reason, relinquished their membership, or from leading photographers who are not members and who feel the Institute can’t offer them anything. We need your expertise back inside the tent if we are to truly represent the best of the profession. Don’t hesitate to contact me or any other Board member for direct input. While we’ll not be able to respond to every single idea or even complaint, only by hearing directly what those priorities are from members or non-members will the AIPP overall be more representative of professional image maker needs in 2017 and beyond.

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