BBC Reveals Fresh Intake of Assistant Commissioners

The BBC has revealed the next intake of seven assistant commissioners who will be joining the corporation’s commissioning teams across the U.K. The candidates will be joining a year-long placement with development opportunities.

The assistant commissioners are:

Gillian Burke – children’s 0-12 animated content, Northern Ireland. Burke previously worked as a line producer for Sixteen South Studios on seasons 2-7 of PBS Kids’ hit show, “Pinkalicious & Peterrific!” Other credits include the Emmy nominated “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie” and Amazon Prime’s “The Bug Diaries.”

Mark Harrison – current affairs, Midlands and North of England. Harrison is a BAFTA and RTS-winning executive producer whose credits include “Paramedics On Scene” and “Scotland, Slavery and Statues” for the BBC and “Rescue: Extreme Medics” for Channel 4. He has experience working across documentary, current affairs, specialist factual and factual entertainment genres on programs including “Dispatches,” “Panorama” and “Watchdog.”

Sidra Khan – factual entertainment and events, Scotland. Khan produced and directed season 1 of the BAFTA-winning “Wife Swap,” “Wife Swap U.S.A.,” “Faking It” and “Supernanny.” She has been a development producer for Wall to Wall, Betty TV and the BBC was appointed the first head of development at Firecrest Films. Khan was selected for the Breakthrough Leadership Scheme as one of 50 Black, Asian and minority ethnic backgrounds leaders in the TV industry.

Raphaëlle O’Loan – documentaries, Northern Ireland. O’Loan is an RTS award nominated self-shooting producer-director who makes observational, presenter-led and retrospective documentaries from development to delivery. Credits include “Murder in Paradise,” “Ulster by the Sea” and “Heist: the Northern Bank Robbery.”

Denise Mather – specialist factual, Wales. Mather has across numerous genres including live and events, factual entertainment, competition formats, consumer, crime, travel and fixed rig series. Most recently she was series producer on two seasons of “All That Glitters: Britain’s Next Jewellery Star.”

Caroline O’Neill – unscripted, London. O’Neill’s credits include “The Rap Game” and “Jo & John Bishop: Life after Deaf.” O’Neill’ also co-runs the group, Deaf & Disabled People in TV, is a member of the Coalition for Change, a graduate of the 2020 Screenskills Series Producer Program and this year was awarded the Pact Unsung Hero tribute.   

Rhianna Adams-Christie – scripted, London. Adams-Christie joins the BBC from Amazon’s Audible as producer and development executive in the scripted originals commissioning team. Most recently she produced seven scripted audio dramas working with Hat Trick, Mercury Studios, Disney and Green Door productions. Her background includes both development and production working at Lime Pictures on “Hollyoaks,” Chapter One Pictures, Sister and Whisper Films. 

Dawn Beresford, director of talent, commissioning said: “The recruitment process has demonstrated the strength of talent in the nations and regions and from deaf, disabled and neurodivergent talent pools and I look forward to seeing this new intake continue to flourish in their careers.”

Nichola Garde, creative diversity lead, disability, added: “It has been a fantastic experience meeting so many talented deaf, disabled and/or neurodivergent candidates. We are excited that this will support more opportunities at senior level and looking forward to continuing to work towards strengthening that pipeline.”

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