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Sara Whybrew

Sara Whybrew

Director of Skills and Workforce Development, British Film Institute

Sara is currently the Director of Skills and Workforce Development at the British Film Institute, overseeing a multi-million-pound portfolio of initiatives designed to develop and progress a greater diversity of talent into the screen workforce and support businesses to adopt inclusive operating practices. She also works closely with Government departments in all nations of the UK to both inform, and create sectoral responses to, skills policy priorities.

Sara is passionate about supporting fair and equal entry to work across the cultural industries regardless of one’s background, previous educational achievement, or personal circumstance. Having previously held senior roles at ScreenSkills and Creative & Cultural Skills, she has led the development and delivery of national sector skills programmes supporting sectoral growth whilst opening the sector’s doors to underrepresented talent. She has also worked with hundreds of employers to help them learn about and adopt fair access and inclusive recruitment practices. During her time at Arts Council England, Sara co-created the £15 million Creative Employment Programme, which she subsequently went on to deliver, supporting thousands of unemployed young people into work across the arts. She later created and led the delivery of the award-winning Discover Creative Careers Week, which continues today.

Sara initially trained at art school, later training as a post-16 teacher and has worked in both Further and Higher Education. An avid supporter of culture, Sara is currently a Trustee of the Theatre Royal Bury St Edmunds, the only Theatre in the country to double as a National Trust site.