The Team

Behind the scenes of the Veterans Film Festival is an experienced team of real people who are dedicated to producing an event that will educate, illuminate, and entertain.

The team comes from a diverse range of professions and takes a proactive and creative approach to developing and enhancing film culture

They are also passionate about community engagement and reaching out to all creatives in screened based entertainment.

The Veterans Film Festival is a not-for-profit incorporated association cultural organisation, whose aim is to raise awareness and contribute to our understanding of veterans’ experiences before, during and after service, their families and the impact war has on society.

As a not-for-profit organisation our incorporated association operates under the NSW Fair Trading – Model constitution of the Associations Incorporation Act 2009…. To read the constitution of an incorporated association… Click Here

The annual governance cycle for 2016 has now completed.  We are looking additional board members who believe in our mission and are willing to be active in their governance roles.  For further information contact: Tom Papas, Festival Director, Email:

The 2017 Board to be announced soon.

2016 Board:

Stephen Liddell: President – has more than 30 years experience in Film, Television and Interactive Media as a Cinematographer, Commercial Director, Web Designer and Creative Director. Currently Stephen is the Creative Director for which is a film development business.

Theo Papas CPA & JP: Treasurer – has over 20 years experience in the corporate and not for profit sector. He is a Certified Practicing Account with a Bachelor of Business, Registered Tax Agent, Fellow of FINSIA and is a Justice of the Peace. He also mentors Junior and Intermediate Accountants and help them rise through the ranks.

Tom Papas:  Secretary and Festival Director, has a background in creative design, project management and stakeholder engagement in the arts and media. Tom’s event management, programming and marketing experience over a 15 year period has contributed to his successful history of creating unique film festivals, since 2008. These initiatives, coupled with Tom’s involvement in the Not-for-Profit festival sector, encourage talent and the development of filmmakers, actors, their careers and the broader film industry.

Tony Chu: Is the Founder of Networking Action for Filmmakers & Actors, NAFA. For 12 years, he has convened their monthly educational forums [Choc Tops] and yearly short film festival, Show-Fest International. Tony is an accomplished actor (TV guest roles on ‘Packed to the Rafters’, ‘Wild Boys’, ‘All Saints’). He is also an award-winning Director-Producer (35+ short films) and screenwriter (three feature films in development).

Advisory Board members:

Tim Lea – With an MBA, nearly 20 years professional experience in the Corporate Finance sector with such institutions as HSBC, GE Commercial Finance and the Lloyds Bank International Banking Group. Tim is now dedicated to writing and film production. Just released the first feature, ‘54 Days’, which had its Australian premiere at our own Science Fiction Film festival in November 2014. The film has won 6 awards on the International Film Festival circuit.

Paul Payten: Over 30 years in Direct Marketing Business to Business across many sectors and industries. Educator for Sustainability and Entrepreneur creating and initiating opportunities and projects to integrate sustainability, spirituality and prosperity in community and business. Co author of ‘Your Eco Handbook’ published by Fairfax Media 2008. Creative writer for journals and magazines.

Joshua Hoareau – a multi-award winning Director from Melbourne, Australia, completed a Bachelors Degree in Film and Digital Media with a Major in Film. Joshua went on to enter one of his own films, ‘Arrival’, into the 2013 WD Project Sci-Fi Film Competition. This film and won Best Film, Best Cinematographer and Best Editing and went on to win a multitude of awards internationally. In 2014 Joshua entered ‘Peacekeeper’ in Project Homeless short film competition, winning both Best Film and Best Film on Returning War Veterans. ‘Peacekeeper’ is now airing internationally in several languages and in pre-production as his upcoming début feature film.