Many of you might have seen the job profiles last year, and that we were looking for TV journalists across Europe, the Americas, Asia, China and Australia. It took me almost one year to get this new team together. But since April everyone is in place and producing – time for me to provide an update after a long period of silence on my blog.
The response to the job postings was overwhelming. We received almost 4000 applications. After an intensive recruitment process we hired six new team members. One Senior Executive Producer with global responsibilities and five Executive Producers covering the regions. All of them are former TV journalists who have worked with major networks. This global network of correspondents is a unique approach within the whole industry. It demonstrates Shell’s commitment to increase visual communication activities. Rather than publishing corporate messages, my new team focuses on storytelling. Main goal of my new team is to uncover the fascinating day-to-day business and operations of the world’s largest company with a journalistic open and honest approach focusing on the people and characters behind the story.
Let me also take the chance tin introduce you to my new team members:
Liam Bartlett, London (Senior Executive Producer)
Liam will be my deputy for the visual team and lead and coordinate all visual storytelling on a global scale. In this function, he will be closely working with the Executive Producers in the regions.
Liam joins Shell with almost 30 years experience across all three major media platforms – television, radio and print. For the past 7 years he was an International Correspondent with 60 Minutes, the Nine Network’s (Aust) flagship public affairs program. During this time, he covered war zones in Iraq, Afghanistan, South Ossetia and Syria and crisis zones such as Somalia, Nigeria, Gaza, the West Bank and the Congo; as well as humanitarian, environmental and celebrity based feature stories. Liam’s work earned two international and one national award and numerous commendations. Prior to Nine, he has been editor-in-chief and host of prime-time programs as a radio broadcaster with the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) and likewise, hosted prime-time, daily television current affairs with the ABC. He has also been employed for more than 10 years as a feature writer and opinion columnist with News Ltd (Aust). A Bachelor of Economics from the University of Western Australia, Liam is also a Churchill Fellow and winner of multiple awards from the Australian Journalists Association. Liam relocated with his family from Perth to London.
Darren Connell, Perth (Executive Producer Australia)
Darren joins Shell with nearly 20 years experience working across television, digital and online platforms for leading global broadcasters. Most recently he was the bureau manager for CNBC Asia in Australia. During this time he helped build CNBC’s Australian operations and was responsible for overseeing the production of daily and weekly programming covering international business and financial markets. Prior to joining CNBC Darren was a senior producer with Fairfax Media. He produced a range of award-winning video and multimedia content for Australia’s largest online news providers including the Sydney Morning Herald, the Age and Australian Financial Review. Darren began his career working with Star Television in Hong Kong. He has a Bachelor of Economics from the University of Sydney, a postgraduate diploma in Television Production from the Australian Film and Television School and has studied Mandarin at the Beijing Film Academy in China.
Mark Lappin, London (Executive Producer EMEA)
Mark is an award-winning television producer/director who has extensive programme-making and field experience with some of the world’s leading broadcasters. Most recently he worked at CNN where, as Senior Producer of the network’s flagship news and current affairs programme, ‘Connect the World’, he oversaw the production team based in the UK and at World headquarters in the United States and also deputised for the Executive Editor. Mark began his career with BBC News as one of 14 broadcast journalists to be sponsored by the Corporation on its prestigious trainee programme before going on to work for some of Britain’s biggest commercial broadcasters including ITV and Sky News. Later, as Executive Producer at Sky News in Ireland, he was responsible for the editorial content of two nightly national broadcasts and he has won major awards for his short and long-form documentary work with Ireland’s national broadcaster, RTÉ – most notably as producer/director of a film which took top prize in its category at the 2012 Irish Film & Television Awards. Mark graduated with first class honours in International Commerce and Spanish from University College Dublin and also holds a Postgraduate qualification in Journalism Studies from the University of Wales.
Chandi Jayawickrama, Singapore (Executive Producer Asia)Chandi brings 17 years experience working with global broadcasters, covering multiple genres. Over the last decade Chandi has predominantly worked for the National Geographic Channel producing, directing and writing, award-winning documentaries in Asia broadcast globally. She also directed a series for Discovery Channel which was nominated for the best documentary series in Asia by the Asia Television Awards. Her other credits include TLC, BBC World, CNBC Asia and Channel NewsAsia. In the past 10 years she has also media trained senior management for organizations like McKinsey, Michelin, ExxonMobil, Infosys and IBM.
Kiran Husain, Houston (Executive Producer Americas)
Kiran Khalid is a broadcast journalist who has worked on-air for every network affiliate in cities across the United States as well as CNN. In addition to her on-camera work, she has produced breaking and top news stories for Good Morning America, CNN and Court TV as a network field producer.
After September 11, 2001, she was one of the first American journalists to gain access into a Pakistani madrassa (religious school) to see firsthand what many were calling “terrorist breeding grounds.” In 2005 she travelled to Niger and Mali to cover the famine that gripped the West African countries for CNN International. Those stories were showcased at the United Nations Film Festival as finalists in the “Stories from the Field” category. In 2007, she completed her second documentary, “We Are Not Free” about media censorship in Pakistan. Kiran has also filed stories from Turkey and Ethiopia about the world water crisis and in 2010, she returned to Pakistan where she spent three months reporting and producing for CNN’s Pakistan Bureau. Most recently, Kiran was based in New York City as a network field producer and reporter for CNN covering everything from politics and the economy to breaking news and terrorism. Kiran is a former adjunct professor at the City University of New York’s (CUNY) Graduate School of Journalism and graduated from the broadcast journalism program at the University of Texas. Kiran will be based in Houston.
Aaron Zhao, Beijing (Executive Producer China)
Before joining Shell, Aaron has worked for China’s major national network China Central Television for the last 10 years. Aaron has undertaken almost all types of work assignments as a broadcast journalist.He started his career in CCTV News (the English language news channel broadcasting across the globe) as a script writer and segment producer for major news bulletins. He then became a field reporter covering all kinds of sporting and business stories. For the Beijing Olympics he acted as one of CCTV’s executive producers. In addition, as CCTV’s executive producer for special programs, he managed several of CCTV News specials, including the World Economic Forum, the BOAO Forum for Asia, the 2010 World Cup and the 2011 FINA World Championships. Aaron also trained young Chinese journalists on scripting, video editing, field reporting and show producing. Aaron obtained a Bachelor degree from Beijing International Studies University and is set to acquire a Master Degree in Economics from Peking University.