Freemuse appoints new Executive Director

24 April 2017

Freemuse appoints Dr Srirak Plipat as new Executive Director from 1 April. The organisation thanks Ole Reitov, former Executive Director, for leading Freemuse and positioning it as a leading organisation in defending artistic freedom.


“I am delighted to welcome Srirak to the team,” said Martin Cloonan, Chair of Freemuse. “He brings with him a wealth of experience which can only be to the benefit of the organisation. We look forward to working with him in this latest stage of Freemuse’s development.” 

Srirak has diverse arts and human rights experience. He started his career as the producer and senior scriptwriter of the TV documentary series, “One more (life), then (we are) free,” telling stories of the lives of the poor and disadvantaged in Thai society. The series suffered multiple acts of censorship that gradually put an end to his documentary career.

He then shifted to human rights advocacy, serving for ten years at Amnesty International as Executive Director of Amnesty International Thailand and later Director of Amnesty International’s programme responsible for innovation in human rights activism, coordinating and mobilising seven million global activists for the organisation, and aligning local activism with global campaigns. He initiated and managed regional programmes in the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Before joining Freemuse, Srirak served as Director for Asia Pacific at Transparency International, working with local civil society organisations advocating for transparency and accountable governance.

“I am excited to join Freemuse at this time when the organisation is at a new height of its development,” said Srirak Plipat. “I look forward to working with the Executive Committee, staff and partners to drive Freemuse to the next level, particularly our research, advocacy and global network, so we can meet the challenges of artistic freedom of our time.”

Srirak and Ole just returned from a workshop in Los Angeles with the UN Special Rapporteurs David Kaye and Karima Bennoune discussing with network partners how to continue the efforts of strengthening advocacy and defence for artistic freedom worldwide.

“Srirak brings in new perspectives to our work,” noted Ole Reitov, “and will no doubt work hard to ensure that Freemuse continues being the world’s leading organisation advocating artistic freedom. Srirak and I are working jointly for a period of three months to ensure stability and develop the visions of Freemuse further in the transitional period.”

Freemuse pays tribute to Ole Reitov, former Executive Director, who will contribute to Freemuse in a new role as Special Advisor.

“I would also like to thank and pay tribute to Ole Reitov for his leadership of Freemuse, and for his dedication to the organisation since its foundation,” said Martin Cloonan. “He leaves behind him an extremely solid foundation upon which we hope to build.”

“A sharp social entrepreneurial mind, political astuteness and absolute commitment to Freemuse are some of the qualities that help Ole bring us to where we are today,” observed Srirak Plipat after spending the past few weeks with Ole. “I thank him deeply for such invaluable contributions he has done for the organisation and arts freedom as a whole. I have learnt so much from him and wish him the very best for his next endeavours.”

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