We love celebrating Women’s History Month by saluting our members who contribute so much to this community. Every day in March we will feature a WIFV Member who has created compelling work and mentored others. Learn more about our honorees by reading their bios below. We encourage members to honor their colleagues with a $31 donation during Women’s History Month. Tax-deductible donations help WIFV provide programs that encourage media-makers to make history. If you donate to the 31 for 31 campaign, you will be entered into a drawing to win a doll of award-winning film maker Ava Duvernay (pictured below). Make a contribution today!
Thursday, March 31: Pip Gilmour
PIP GILMOUR is a director, writer, and producer who has worked in broadcast, corporate media, education and training. Her current title is Executive Producer, Pip Gilmour Productions. Her work has taken her to the rainforest canopy of Siberut, Indonesia to an underground cave and water system in West Virginia; and from directing US Navy Blackhawk helicopters during a dramatized mountain-top rescue in the White Mountains to working with archaeologists in Egypt, El Salvador, and Mexico.
Wednesday, March 30: Heather Godwin
HEATHER GODWIN is a producer and actress known for ULTIMATE TRAVEL: COUNTRY CRAZY, GRANNIES GONE WILD, and NEW WALDEN. She is currently acting in a political ad playing nationally. Heather freelances in television production, writing, and events production. Her short doc, ODE TO TREASURE HAMMOCK RANCH – a film about cows and creativity screened at the Global Peace Film Festival and Bellamy Road Gallery in Florida. Heather served on the WIFV Board.
Tuesday, March 29: Flora Nicholas
FLORA NICHOLAS is a (non) Oscar, Emmy and Golden Globe winning writer, producer, director. And a Huffington Post blogger. During the course of her crazy career, Flora has created advertising campaigns for a whole host of famous clients, such as McDonalds, Reebok, Heinz, Mobil, and Wrangler. Flora is currently applying her skills to the world of TV, documentary and film production. In fact, her recent creations include prospective TV series such as “American Nose Pickers”, “Undercover Kittens”, and “Extreme Makeover: Igloo Edition.” And still she has been able to receive top awards for her work.
Monday, March 28: Richelle Fatheree
RICHELLE FATHEREE comes to independent film producing with a fundraising background and has served as associate producer on INCENDIARY: The Willingham Case and as executive producer on ARLO & JULIE. Her current project as associate producer is STARVING THE BEAST: The Battle to Disrupt and Reform America’s Public Universities which will premiere at SXSW this year. Richelle is the owner of Feathertree Films.
Sunday, March 27: Maxine Downs
MAXINE DOWNS, PhD., is a Social Science Analyst for the US State Department. As a cultural anthropologist she spent more than 15 years living and working in Africa and Afghanistan assessing gender impact on a microcredit program in Africa, successfully managing a culturally diverse research team abroad, and conducting national and international field research design and implementation. She is a co-director of the WIFV fiscal sponsored project BAMAKO CHIC: THREADS OF POWER, COLOR and CULTURE.
Saturday, March 26: Carolyn Bain
CAROLYN BAIN, Ph.D., is president of award-winning, creative media services firm, Bain Pugh & Associates, Inc. Since serving as an early WIFV board member, Carolyn has produced videos for two WIFV Women of Vision Awardees: Elise Reeder and Connie Day McClinton. Recently for WIFV, Carolyn and Connie co-produced the educational series “Survivor’s Guide to Media Producing,” with two more sessions planned for 2016. Carolyn moved her firm from Dallas to DC in 1987, and she continues producing high-impact stories for information technology clients and the US military. Her work maximizes graphic design, talent direction, and cinematic lighting. She completed her Ph.D. in Theatre and Performance Studies in 2007 at the University of Maryland, College Park, where she was a fellow of the Maryland Institute of Technology in the Humanities (MITH) and the Clara and Robert Vambery Foundation. Before moving to media, Carolyn served as Associate Professor with tenure and Head of Theatre at the University of Alabama-Birmingham. Her scholarly research and academic publications focus on the eventification of celebrity and commodification of identity.
Friday, March 25: Donna Brant
DONNA BRANT specializes in pushing video messaging to a new level by stirring and changing society through the visual medium. Her films, television specials, and web videos have sparked public action on a number of critical issues from raising millions for non-profit organizations, to keeping teens safe, to catching elusive serial killers. Donna is the former Supervising Producer of America’s Most Wanted (AMW), and was the only woman to serve in that position at the FOX show. In 2008, Donna founded Donnabrant Productions LLC to focus on making an impact on important social issues. Donna’s films have been honored for many prestigious awards.
Thursday, March 24: Penny Lee
PENNY LEE is a freelance television and feature film editor and media consultant with over 25 years experience. Her background encompasses a wide range of television and independent film projects that include feature length movies – A YEAR AND CHANGE– as well as short and long form documentaries – THE CHILDREN WE SACRIFICE, and CRUCIBLE OF WAR – reality TV series, training, promotional or educational videos, commercials, PSA and other entertainment programs. Penny has also produced and edited two documentaries of her own – THROUGH CHINATOWN’S EYES: April 1968 and THE CYC EXPERIENCE. Penny has served on the WIFV board and is the founder of the Media Job Fair.
Wednesday, March 23: Kat Roman
KAT ROMAN has been a storyteller since she was a child and parlayed this interest into a combined major in Communications, Art and Business at Appalachian State University. After graduation, she created numerous pro-bono projects that spanned everything from music (Let the Moonshine, Luke Combs) to nonprofit (Remembering Alexandria’s Fallen, Alexandria Police Officers Memorial ) film productions. Taking every opportunity available to network, volunteer and assist with various film projects, she continues this work by supporting the Screenwriters and Actors Social Club and Women in Film and Video as well as volunteering with DC Shorts, AFI Docs, 48hr Film Festival and DC Webfest. She currently works at the Smithsonian Digital Studio and within Smithsonian Networks, supporting a joint venture with Smithsonian and Showtime. An avid runner, yoga enthusiast, music lover and movie goer, she actively seeks new opportunities that support visual media storytelling.
Tuesday, March 22: Julianne Donofrio
JULIANNE DONOFRIO is an award-winning writer, producer, shooter and editor with almost 20 years of experience working on daily breaking news, long-form programming, filmmaking and new media. She currently serves as director and executive producer of the independent feature documentary PIECED TOGETHER which shows how one woman’s love for her mother changed the American landscape…and saved her life. This WIFV fiscal sponsored project is slated for release in 2016.
Monday, March 21: Frances A. Cheever
FRANCES A. CHEEVER served in the US Army for three decades as a senior NCO (E-7) and Officer in the Army Nurse Corps, making her one of the few female “Mustangs.” Now a writer, retired Major A. Cheever provides an insightful and unique perspective to her military action screenplay, RALLY POINT, a top 5 finalist for the Military Veterans in Productions (MVP) screenwriting contest, selected for the GI Film Festival 2015 screenplay contest, the WIFV “Spotlight on Screenwriters” catalogue and was a featured screenwriter for the International Screenwriter’s Association. She’s currently developing the RALLY POINT project into a franchise/episodic series, with the sequel, DERAILED already in the polishing stage. Frances was the Military production advisor for the feature film JACKIE, starring Natalie Portman filmed in Washington, DC. premiering in 2017. She was the military liaison for casting House of Cards season 4, placing 50+ active military/Veterans on set. She’s currently building the Veterans in Film & Television DC Chapter which will help facilitate getting our “Boot in the Door” here in Washington, DC.
Sunday, March 20: Giovanna Chesler
GIOVANNA CHESLER is the Director and Associate Professor of the Film and Video Studies Program and affiliated faculty in Women and Gender Studies and Film and Media Studies at George Mason University. She was a Producer for the doc feature OUT IN THE NIGHT, a co-production of ITVS and CPB. The film premiered in documentary competition at the LA Film Festival and is currently touring internationally. Giovanna’s previous films include PERIOD THE END OF MENSTRUATION, BYE BI LOVE and BEAUTEOUS: STEPHANIE.
Saturday, March 19: Anne Chapman
ANNE CHAPMAN is known for her work on LINCOLN, CHILD’s PLAY, and FOR LOVE OF LIBERTY: THE STORY OF AMERICA’S BLACK PATRIOTS. She is the founder of Anne Chapman Casting, a boutique casting company specializing in independent and small-scale film and television projects. She also serves as Casting Director/Adjunct Professor for VCUarts Cinema, casting more than 65 films there since 2007. Anne has found she has a particular love for historical and independent projects.
Friday, March 18: Elizabeth Donatelli
ELIZABETH DONATELLI is an Executive Producer, recently re-located to the DMV. She has been involved in broadcast media as a field producer, reporter, and anchor for ABC Owned TV Station Group, WCAV-TV WAVE 3 News, and KSNV-TV. Currently, she is the Founder and one-woman band for Seven Shots Productions.
Thursday, March 17: Jill Merrick
Telling a compelling story has deep roots in JILL MERRICK’s professional life that reaches back to her start in print journalism, where, with a 35mm still camera and a typewriter, she focused on the lives of inner city and rural families in the US. A few years later, working for The Brazil Times in Rio de Janeiro, Jill made a deal with her publisher to divide her time between foreign investment—what she was hired for –and finding stories among Brazil’s indigenous population, including their crafts. Over the last decade, Jill has worked with the head of Gender and Development at the World Bank to initiate an international program led by the World Bank, in partnership with the Nike Corporation, to improve girls’ chances in the developing world to live an empowered, healthy life. Jill’s videos that were shot on location in Africa, Asia and Latin America were part of the effective mix that helped gain traction among international policymakers and governments to add momentum to these goals. Jill was an early member of the board of WIFV, an opportunity that has given her friendship and professional development over 25 years.
Wednesday, March 16: Barbara Burst
BARBARA BURST is an Editor, Post-Producer, and Writer. Her first real editing job was synching dailies for TERMS OF ENDEARMENT and SPLASH. Since then she’s cut at least 200 shorts and around 50 hours of broadcast documentaries for PBS, Discovery, National Geographic, Smithsonian Networks, TLC, History Channel, and CNN, plus a handful of independent films. She spent more than 15 years at a post-production house where she founded and subsequently managed an offline editing department with 7 systems and 5 employees. She is known for her strong storytelling skills, being adept on both Avid & FCP, and a good understanding of the post-production process.
Tuesday, March 15: Shellee M. Haynesworth
SHELLEE M. HAYNESWORTH, is an Emmy Award winning producer, writer, director and digital storyteller. Throughout her 20+-year career, she has produced, written, and developed documentaries, multicultural programs, and digital media projects for clients such as USAID, PBS, NBC, BET, TV One, HBO/Time Warner, among others. As digital storyteller, her focus has been to examine the African Diaspora and shed light on the untold human stories and hidden contributions of African American and Latino Pathbreakers. Currently, she is exploring new approaches to developing immersive cinematic experiences, coding and pioneering the next-generation of the intersection for technology and digital storytelling with her latest multi-platform endeavor, BLACK BROADWAY ON U: A TRANSMEDIA PROJECT.
Monday, March 14: Susan Borke
SUSAN BORKE is an attorney and media company executive with 30 years of experience in business affairs of multimedia organizations. She has just retired as the Senior Vice President and Deputy General Counsel and Managing Attorney at the National Geographic Society. She started at NatGeo 24 years ago, soon after NG Television launched itsExplore series and premiered the DISCOVERY OF THE TITANIC. Over her first two decades with NG, Susan provided legal support to Nat Geo TV as it grew from a producer of weekly television series to an international television network.
Sunday, March 13: Connie Bransilver
CONNIE BRANSILVER, an internationally-known nature photographer, artist, author and speaker. She is widely known for her multi-media slide and music, poetry-lecture presentations on the value of the natural world. In addition to an on-going assignment with UNESCO-Asia she is producing GUARDIANS OF THE EVERGLADES, a multi-media exhibition featuring Nicholas Petrucci’s life size portraits of living individuals who have dedicated their lives to conservation of the Everglades ecosystem, Clyde Butcher’s black and white landscape photographs, a documentary film, and Connie’s flora photographs printed on diaphanous banners hanging from the ceiling, swaying gently to suggest their ephemeral nature. GUARDIANS OF THE EVERGLADES is a WIFV fiscally-sponsored project.
Saturday, March 12: Carlyn Davis
CARLYN DAVIS is the President and founder of Carlyn Davis Casting, Inc. Her credits include dozens of feature films, television, MOW’s, pilots, commercial spots (both radio and television), print, and thousands of industrials. In addition, she has been hired nationally to cast large campaigns including all of the casting for AMERICA’s PROMISE with Colin Powell. She is the first member ever to be voted into the prestigious Casting Society of America [C.S.A] from the DC/VA area. Carlyn has been casting in this market since 1992 and is also on the Board of the Emmy’s.
Friday, March 11: Connie Day McClinton
CONNIE DAY McCLINTON is a Business Development Executive with Interface Media Group. Her 30-year career has included working as a Producer, Director, Operations Manager and Studio Technician. She has been a member of WIFV for over 20 years and has served as VP of Development, an Image Makers volunteer and a coordinator of the Producers’ Master Class. Connie enjoys mentoring youth and serving her community. She serves on the Board of Directors for JMG Productions/Listen to Our Voices, a non-profit organization working with and advocating for children. She is the President of the local chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. Last year the chapter awarded 14 scholarships and provided hundreds of layette items to expectant mothers through its Stork’s Nest program, a partnership with the March of Dimes.
Thursday, March 10: Nina Gilden Seavey
NINA GILDEN SEAVEY is an Emmy Award-winning filmmaker and nearly 30-year veteran of the documentary world. Her work can be seen in cinemas, on television, on multiple platforms of ancillary media, and in museum installations across the globe. Seavey is the director of The Documentary Center in the School of Media and Public Affairs at GWU, which she founded in 1991. She concurrently serves as Co-Director of the Center for Innovative Media. Her recent doc, PARABLES OF WAR is screening now.
Wednesday, March 9: Caitlin Carroll
CAITLIN CARROLL, a non-fiction writer, editor, and filmmaker, concentrating on topics relating to social issues and culture. Currently, she is the Managing Editor of the award-winning membership magazine for the Nature Conservancy. Her short doc, PAINTED CITY, is nearing completion and is fiscally-sponsored by WIFV.
Tuesday, March 8: Phylis Geller
PHYLIS GELLER’s 25+ year career in media began in public television at WNET, KCET, MPT, and WETA where she worked on programs including GREAT PERFORMANCES and AMERICAN PLAYHOUSE, and more recently serving as producer for Suze Orman’s specials. She is the Consulting Producer for BLOOD ON THE MOUNTAIN, a searing investigation into the economic and environmental injustices that have resulted from industrial control in West Virginia due for theatrical release this year. Recent projects include COAL COUNTRY (Discovery Planet Green); THE APPALACHIANS (3 hour APT for PBS); COSMIC JOURNEY: The Voyager Interstellar Mission and Message (A&E). She was Executive Producer and Co-writer of KOREAN WAR STORIES, a PBS special which won the Emmy for Best Historical Documentary. Also for PBS, she was executive producer and co-writer of TESLA, MASTER OF LIGHTING. An early member of Women in Film LA, we are honored to have her as an involved member of the WIFV Legacy Circle.
Monday, March 7: Kristen Udowitz
KRISTEN UDOWITZ of Nacho Average Voice is a seasoned voiceover talent for television and radio commercials, corporate video, podcasts, CD-ROM training programs, voice-mail systems and museum exhibits. She’s voiced spots for Animal Planet, Citibank, the CDC, Dominos Pizza, Deloitte & Touche, Discovery Health Channel, Girl Scouts of the U.S.A., Goodwill Industries, IKEA, Marriott Corp, NatGeo Society, PBS, and more.
Sunday, March 6: Susan Stolov
SUSAN STOLOV who is an award-winning filmmaker, director, scriptwriter and social media strategist. She has blazed trails in improving public safety, raised significant donations for non-profits and tackled hot topics on the public agenda-among a lengthy list of achievements. If you put your child in a booster seat or warn a friend not to drink and drive, you’re probably doing so because of her work. When she opened Washington Independent Production’s doors, she discovered she could have a real impact on the nation’s media agenda. She was hired by government agencies and associations to launch major media campaigns that inform and inspire. She loves to mentor and has taught at American University’s Graduate School in Communications program and guest lectured at Georgetown’s School of Business Administration.
Saturday, March 5: Paige Gold
Attorney Paige Gold, a former WIFV Board member, grew up in the DC area but moved to LA in 1990 to work in the film industry. Starting out as a PA and script supervisor on low-budget films (including one starring a young Patricia Arquette), she later moved into script development and TV-movie production, including two years with ABC Television. After leaving ABC, Paige earned her JD degree and an LLM degree in entertainment and media law at LA’s Southwestern Law School. She also has an MBA from GWU. Paige’s client list includes production companies, television personalities, reporters, authors, public relations specialists, and communications firms.
Friday, March 4: Virginia Bertholet
VIRGINIA BERTHOLET began her career producing commercials. She has been involved in movie development in LA, running a small production company, line producing, broadcast business affairs, crew on a feature film in NYC, and personal creative projects such as a short film for PBS. Her work has earned well over 100 awards and she has judged many film competitions. Currently, she is a co-producer on a feature film, BROOKLYN’S CHOSEN (2016), as well as several documentaries and TV spots.
Thursday, March 3: Erica Arvold
Producer/Casting Director ERICA ARVOLD, CSA most recently produced the pilot RALPH’S WORLD: TIME MACHINE GUITAR for Grammy Nominee Ralph Covert and is currently casting Wish You Well, a feature film written by novelist David Baldacci. She served as Virginia Casting Director with Anne Chapman for DreamWorks’ LINCOLN, cast the indie feature LAKE EFFECTS, and produced and cast the psychological thriller HOUSE HUNTING. For over 20 years, Erica has contributed to the casting of over 100 films and 75 television projects. Erica is the founder and Chair of the Charlottesville Chapter of the Virginia Production Alliance
Wednesday, March 2: Robin Smith
Video/Action Founder and President ROBIN SMITH is an Emmy Award-winning filmmaker. Her first documentary was a story about her MIA father, a Marine Corps pilot shot down over Vietnam. CBS News bought rights to the film and she began her producing career with Charles Kuralt on CBS Sunday Morning. In 1990, Robin established Video/Action as a nonprofit production company to produce educational television and multimedia programs on issues affecting women and at-risk children. Under her direction, Video/Action has completed more than 200 productions. Robin served as WIFV President and received its prestigious Woman of Vision award. She was named a 2003 Distinguished Alum in the School of Fine Arts at Ohio University and received the University’s Medal of Merit in 2006.
Tuesday, March 1: Linda Maslow
In 1988 LINDA MASLOW founded The Maslow Media Group to provide the first centralized and reliable resource to help production companies source talent, crews, and even manage the production. Linda built a culture that focuses on addressing each client’s specific needs, understanding their objectives, delivering to timelines while remaining within budget. The company’s high standards of customer service, quality and ethics are a testament to Linda’s character and vision.