Memnon, the global media preservation and migration services provider, has appointed Marcelle Quinn Williams as its new Strategic Account Director for New Zealand and APAC. Based in Wellington, Marcelle’s core focus will be to provide leadership and governance in ensuring the success of the Utaina project, which began in mid-2022. The multi-year digital preservation project in collaboration with New Zealand’s archival agencies, will safeguard defining moments in the nation’s history and digitally preserve the people’s audiovisual (AV) heritage collections held by Ngā Taonga Sound & Vision, The National Library of New Zealand and Archives New Zealand.
Working with Memnon’s highly skilled technical team, who understand and can operate the technology to facilitate the digitization of assets, Marcelle will support the preservation of audiovisual Māori heritage captured on magnetic media dating from the 1960s through to the 2000s. This includes video and audio tapes, and some magnetic sound recordings on film, all of which are physically deteriorating and require playback equipment that is on the verge of obsolescence. It is the largest project of its kind worldwide.
Heidi Shakespeare, CEO at Memnon said: “Marcelle will not only be an integral part of the Utaina project, but she’ll also be fundamental to demonstrating Memnon’s thought leadership, partnerships and values in New Zealand and the APAC region. We’re on the cusp of amazing things in this industry and we’re confident Marcelle is going to be a valuable member of the team during this exciting time.”
With more than 30 years of marketing experience in the media and technology industries, including a 12-year tenure at IBM, Marcelle will also bring her passion for building honest, authentic and reliable relationships to engage with new customers worldwide, linking them to the skills of Memnon as they initiate their own digitisation projects. Moreover, she will help to support, facilitate and encourage conversations around the importance of cultural preservation, while also forging technical partnerships, such as with AI companies for the transcription of Te Reo, the Māori language, to understand the messages of New Zealand’s ancestors.
Marcelle Quinn Williams, Strategic Account Director for New Zealand and APAC at Memnon said: “It’s great to be working for a company that has inspiring leadership and is united for such a significant cause: ‘What we do matters’. It was a key factor in my decision to join the company. We are safeguarding the voices, stories, music and creative output of Aotearoa [the Māori language name for New Zealand], making this heritage accessible now and for generations to come. The results of our preservation of the memories will result in deeply personal, rewarding experiences for New Zealanders as they seek to understand where they came from.
“I am an avid explorer of my own ancestry. My immigrant Irish family featured on the news the day we landed in New Zealand. I’m very interested to rediscover this record and immerse myself in the emotions of the day, and I delight in my own future generations re-experiencing that arrival in years to come. My father was a great enthusiast of home movie production. He recorded many moments in our childhood, and we often gathered to re-live our own early years and history in these home movies. These movie nights were some of my most favourite childhood memories. It’s for this reason that I understand why we need to preserve the memories for New Zealand, and why this is a story that will resonate with countless families both now and in generations to come.”