Helen Simondson is the Head of ACMI X – a 2,000 square metre state-of-the-art co-working space in the heart of Melbourne’s arts precinct and a first for an Australian Museum. It provides a home for Melbourne’s creative practitioners, assembling a vibrant mix of filmmakers, digital and visual artists, digital producers, web developers, screenwriters and designers.
In 2017/18, Helen co-designed and delivered ACMI Xcel: Creative Tech Accelerator – the first Creative Industries specific accelerator delivered by a museum in Australia, supported by LaunchVic. On the strength of Xcel’s success Helen is now collaborating with the State Library Victoria to continue to deliver business accelerators specifically designed for the Creative Industries. Prior to working at ACMI, Helen worked as a freelance creative producer and arts maker across film and theatre.
As the Head of StartSpace, Anna Burkey is leading development of a new statewide StartSpace Network for State Library Victoria, supporting early-stage entrepreneurs in a state-of-the-art new $2million facility. StartSpace is part of the Library’s $90million transformation program to increase public access for Australia’s oldest and busiest library.
From 2005, Anna was half of the founding staff team at Edinburgh UNESCO City of Literature Trust, presenting innovative public engagement initiatives across Scotland. As one of Creative Scotland’s International Creative Entrepreneurs (ICE) Anna delivered programs in design and social enterprise in South Africa, including global social investment event COMMON Pitch SA.
Anna has worked with Arts Centre Melbourne (Aus), the Edinburgh Festivals and Small Business Gateway (UK), presented the Meet the Author live web series for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation, and has written and presented extensively for media outlets including Time Out, Encyclopaedia Britannica, and the BBC. She likes tea.
Tristonne Forbes is the CEO of Pathwize, a specialist consultancy that designs and delivers bespoke accelerator programs that help turn ideas into global businesses and people into entrepreneurs. Tristonne has been a driving force behind a number of high-profile programs in Australia. Her approach enables the uninitiated to quickly build entrepreneurial muscle and startup execution skills and has enabled scientists, researchers, creative artists and more to build viable global businesses. In addition to her accelerator work Tristonne is a director, advisor, mentor and friend to dozens of startups.