Nick Pitts, Content Director of Jazz FM and already a Radio Academy trustee, will take over from John Dash who stands down after three years as Deputy Chair, and six years in total on the board. Helen Thomas, Head of BBC Radio 2, will also take over from Yvonne Thompson CBE who stands down after three years as Chair.
Accepting the role of Deputy Chair of The Radio Academy, Nick Pitts, having served as Chair of The Radio Festival and Creative Director of The ARIAS, said: “I am thrilled to have been trusted with this role. I am looking forward to the exciting new things we will achieve with Helen at the helm to continue to evolve our Radio Academy as a relevant organisation to celebrate and support radio and audio people, who like me are so passionate about our sector.”
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Notes to Editors
- The Chair and Deputy Chair of The Radio Academy are selected by the Elected Trustees on the Radio Academy board. The Chair and Deputy Chair normally serve a three-year term. Elections to the Radio Academy board are held annually, and elected trustees also serve a three-year term. As well as appointing the Chair and Deputy Chair, elected trustees can co-opt additional board members as required. All members of the board are volunteers.
- Helen Thomas is Head of BBC Radio 2, having previously held the roles of the network's Head of Content Commissioning, and Network Editor. Growing up in Hull, Helen started her career in News working at BBC 5 Live, The Today Programme on BBC Radio 4 and then Newsbeat at Radio 1 before moving into music programming at BBC World Service, before returning to Radio 4 to produce Front Row. In 2003 she joined Radio 2 to produce the Johnnie Walker Drivetime Show, subsequently launching the Chris Evans Drivetime Show in 2006 and Breakfast Show in 2010, when Chris took over from Sir Terry Wogan. Helen led the first ever BBC Music Pop Up digital radio station (Radio 2 Eurovision) and has also brokered major partnerships with the likes of the RHS, The Space and Art Fund. Helen was Creative Director of the Radio Academy's Radio Festival in 2016 and was made a Fellow of The Radio Academy in 2017. She is a founder member of the Young Audio Awards (formerly Young ARIAS) steering committee. In 2018, she was nominated as Individual Of The Year at the Arias and she was listed in the Music Week Women in Music Roll of Honour in 2020.
- Nick Pitts is Content Director of Bauer’s Jazz FM. Nick’s been ensconced in the radio landscape for nearly 30 years from BBC national to launching small scale and DAB, via award winning big London breakfast shows and creating imaging for some of the UKs largest groups of the day. Currently, he is Content Director of the legendary Jazz FM and has been part of the furniture since it’s digital relaunch in 2008, with a journey from producer to board member when the brand was sold to Bauer Media, where he was part of the sale process and oversaw the integration in to the new owner. He also has responsibility for leading the globally respected Jazz FM Awards and created and led its 30th Anniversary “Established 1990” initiative. Nick strives to find creative opportunities in everything - on air, off air and commercially. For the Radio Academy, Nick has been Creative Director for the Radio Festival in 2018 and 2019, plus the ARIAS 2020, and the Chair of The Radio Academy Festival in 2020.