Meet the team – Scott O’Hara
Scott O’Hara is the Chief Executive Officer and leads the Accessible Arts team in the provision of information, advocacy and the facilitation of inclusive arts practice.
What attracted you to the role at Accessible Arts?
I’ve worked at CEO level in service organisations before and I like having that responsibility. I derive a great deal of satisfaction from supporting and connecting artists, and in helping to remove barriers to them doing their work. I’ve connected with Accessible Arts many times in the past and think it’s a great, and valuable, organisation. I think I can assist Accessible Arts at this crucial time in its history — I’m here to help!
What do you do in your role?
Ultimately the CEO is responsible for everything the organisation does, and for making the vision of the board a reality. I will be leading the organisation, formulating and implementing the long and short-term plans for the organisation, and hopefully ensuring everyone has what they need to do their work.
What do you hope to achieve in your role?
Recent changes have seen the funding for Accessible Arts decrease substantially. I hope to find ways to overcome that, and to ensure Accessible Arts is financially sustainable and as effective in delivering its services as our stakeholders expect. I hope to introduce new services in response to needs in the sector as they emerge. I also hope to position Accessible Arts into a disability led organisation when my time in the role is up.
What excites or inspires you about working in the arts and disability sector?
I believe that we all have cultural rights, and equality of access and participation as an artist or audience member should be universal. I grew up with extended family members living with disability and saw them do things people did not expect them to be able to. From a young age I have been aware that society’s perceptions of people with disability is what prevents access and participation, often more so than the disability itself. I’m motivated to help remove barriers of that nature in the arts.
Do you have any hobbies?
I am a very keen musician. I play guitar, sing and write my own music, and I recently spent a few terms in the NSW Conservatorium of Music’s Open Academy World Music Ensemble which was both challenging and fun. I also play Australian Rules Football — I am the captain of a mixed gender social team made of players aged from their early 20s through to their 50s.
Describe yourself in three words Scott.
Calm, creative, methodical.