Mara Manus has been appointed executive director of the Film Society Of Lincoln Center, effective September 15.

Manus becomes the third person to hold the title and succeeds Claudia Bonn, who served the organisation for 15 years and took over as executive director from Joanne Koch in 2003.

Manus joins the organisation after six years as executive director of The Public Theater in New York, where she instigated many initiatives to increase revenues. Before that she worked as a programme officer at the Ford Foundation and was responsible for awarding multi-million dollar grants.

She previously served as president and executive director of the non-profit body Chrysalis and was a production executive at MCA Universal for seven years. Eaqrlier credits include stints at Roger Corman's New World Pictures and Trans-Pacific Films.

President of the board Daniel Stern said Manus would be a great leader, adding: 'Her expertise in strategic planning and fundraising, as well as her knowledge of the city, will be a great asset to the organisation, and will serve us well in reaching our goals and charting a new future that maximises the expanded capability of a new film center in an extremely complex landscape.'

'This moment of rebirth of the Film Society is an opportunity to affirm the deep importance of film in modern culture and broaden its appeal in the cultural landscape of New York and beyond,' Manus said. 'This is an incredible and deeply felt opportunity and I am thrilled to have this honour.'