Longtime Texas Film Commission deputy director Carol Pirie has joined the Austin Film Society as an executive administrator. The Film Commission veteran will help coordinate the transactions and details involved in the expansion of Austin Studios, which will use its news space at the former National Guard Armory and $5.4 million from the 2012 bond election, to double its number of tenants.

"We created this position to prepare for the expansion, and Carol, with her 23 years of experience at the Texas Film Commission, is the first person who came to mind," AFS executive director Rebecca Campbell said. "Carol brings many relationships along with her that will be beneficial as we grow. Her position will also play a key role in all matters that keep the Film Society going, including strategic planning, fundraising and stakeholder relations."

AFS, which recently established a home theater at the Marchesa Hall and Theatre (6226 Middle Fiskvill Rd.), has wrapped its seven-week campaign to help build the "Best Little Art House in Texas." The organization, co-founded by director Richard Linklater raised $122,737 to fund upgrades at the theater, including a 35 mm changeover system for archival film prints, a digital projector and DCP system for new films and digital restorations, a Dolby 5.1 surround sound equipment and installation.

"Thanks to the success of this campaign, Austin will have a fully-equipped, community-friendly, non-commercial theater to add to the mix of local stalwarts the Alamo Drafthouse Cinema, Paramount Theater and Violet Crown Cinema. The Austin Film Society will be able to double our programming, and filmmakers and community organizations will enjoy another affordable option for film exhibition," Campbell said.