AFM President Thomas F. Lee Reacts to Recent Death of Former AMPTP President Nick Counter

The American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada (AFM) was saddened to learn about the death of Nick Counter, the former President of the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP), on November 6, 2009. The AMPTP is the film and television industry’s official collective bargaining representative, which negotiates with other industry trade unions like the AFM. The AMPTP works with the AFM on contracts to ensure musicians receive appropriate compensation and treatment in the motion picture and television business.  Ironically, Nick’s death came on the very day the Federation and the AMPTP reached agreement on their new motion picture agreements; agreements that Nick had previously negotiated with the Federation over the course of his 27-year-career as the AMPTP’s chief negotiator.  

“Nick was one of a kind,” said AFM President Tom Lee, who participated in four rounds of negotiations with Nick and served with him as a trustee of the AFM and Employers Pension Fund.  “He was both extraordinarily tough and extraordinarily fair.  While he never lost sight of the objectives of the studios he represented, he understood the important contributions that musicians made to the success of the motion picture industry and treated us with the respect to which we were due.  He will be missed, both professionally and personally, by everyone with whom he interacted.”  

Founded in 1896, the American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada (AFM), AFL-CIO, is the largest organization in the world dedicated to representing the interests of professional musicians. With more than 90,000 members, the AFM represents all types of professional musicians, including those who record music for sound recordings, film scores, videogames, radio, television and commercial announcements, as well as perform music of every genre in every sort of venue from small jazz clubs to symphony orchestra halls to major stadiums.  Whether negotiating fair agreements, protecting ownership of recorded music, securing benefits such as health care and pension, or lobbying legislators, the AFM is committed to raising industry standards and placing the professional musician in the foreground of the cultural landscape. For more information, contact the main number at (212) 869-1330 or visit the Web site at Follow the AFM on Twitter and Facebook

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