This just in from longtime Seattle Office of Film + Music Director James Keblas:
(Keblas has been the director since he was first appointed by Mayor Greg Nickels in 2005.)
To all my friends and colleagues,
I am writing to inform you that Mayor Murray has decided to not reappoint me to the position of Director for Seattle's Office of Film + Music.
It has been an honor to serve this community. My goal has always been to make Seattle better by making it a great place to make a living making film and music. Over the past nine years we have moved well in this direction. Seattle has earned a reputation as a film friendly destination and most importantly, our local filmmakers are having success. Just this month Seattle was ranked the 5th best city to live and work as a moviemaker. By all of our economic measurements business is up, and the Commercialize Seattle campaign is established to continue this trend into the future.
Seattle is now the City of Music. From showcasing our local musicians at the airport, during Seahawks games, and at Chamber of Commerce events, our community has embraced its musical identity tighter than any of us ever thought possible. There are more live music venues thanks in part to the live music incentives and nightlife initiatives we implemented. The business of music is strong in our community with labels, radio, retail, management, and tech-companies that have broken the old models and made new ones.
I have been working with Seattle's creative community since the early '90s and have never seen it better. While we have enjoyed success in the past, this time it feels more authentic. Forget "world-class." We are "Seattle-class." Thanks to the hard work of so many individuals and business leaders, I look forward to seeing this work continue.
While I am sad to leave the Film + Music Office, I feel very confident that the staff will continue to serve the film and music industries well, and execute the day-to-day work smoothly.
I will be staying active in Seattle and I'm sure our paths will cross soon.