The Chief Executive of the Copyright Agency, Adam Suckling, has announced Nicola Evans as the new head of the agency’s philanthropic area, the Cultural Fund and the teacher resource Reading Australia.

The Cultural Fund is highly regarded within the Australian cultural landscape, having provided millions of dollars in funding to arts and literary organisations since it was formalised in 2004.

Reading Australia, which is a Cultural Fund initiative, is a digital hub developed to encourage the teaching of Australian stories in the classroom through the provision of high quality study resources for books from Foundation to High School.

Mr Suckling said, “Nicola has extensive experience overseeing grants programs and developing policies for the literature sector, having worked at the Australia Council for more than 20 years. Over this period Nicola worked in a number of senior roles including running the Council’s literature grants programs and working with the board to support Australian writers and the sector.

“Nicola has in-depth knowledge of a wide range of art practices and strong contacts across the Australian creative community, where she is held in high regard. She will bring a highly professional approach to the administration of the Cultural Fund,” Mr Suckling added.

Nicola has been working most recently as the Australian Publishers Association’s Program and Communications Manager.

Ms Evans said, “I am delighted to be taking on this role at the Copyright Agency. It is an important time for writing, publishing and the visual arts and I plan to continue the great work of the Cultural Fund and Reading Australia in supporting creativity across Australia.”

The Cultural Fund has a number of funding strands. The main fund is for organisations supporting writers and visual artists and is currently open for applications until 28 April.

The Ignite and Create Career Funds are for individual creators – both emerging and established.

In 2016, the Cultural Fund awarded an unprecedented $160,000 in fellowships to seven creators – one Author Fellowship of $80,000, four Publishing Fellowships worth a total of $40,000 and two NAVA Fellowships for Visual Artists totalling $40,000.

Ms Evans will start at the Copyright Agency on 20 April, 2017.