Candidates for the 2020 Board of Directors
Returning Board Members
Jody’s experience in the film industry began in 1994 as a wardrobe assistant on a Sears Shoes commercial. She worked as a PA and wardrobe/prop stylist, production coordinator, manager on commercials, corporate videos, television series and feature films in an effort to find her own unique niche in the business. Eventually as a result of being hired as a food and prop stylist, that became her position for hire. She has served on the MN WIFT Board since 2008, four of those years as Vice-President and previously chaired the Communications Committee overseeing the MN WIFT newsletter and e-blasts.
After a year sabbatical, she rejoined the board energized and currently serves as President.
Melissa is a Freelance Makeup Artist in Commercial, Corporate, Film & Television, as well as Director of Education and Career Development at Faces Etc. of MN, multi media makeup school. She trained and worked in London, and returned to MN in 2008. Melissa is a mentor in the community (industry), and an IATSE 490 Union member.
Melissa joined the MN WIFT board in 2010 and served as Vice President under Presidents JoJo Liebeler (2016-2018) and Jody Lichtor (2018-2020).
Chris is a software engineer and filmmaker. He joined the Minneapolis/St. Paul filmmaking community in 2007, where he works as an assistant director and producer on feature films, short films, music videos and documentaries.
Chris joined the MN WIFT Board in 2016 and has served as Secretary since 2017.
As a filmmaker, Alison Guessou's aim is to tell those stories that are not often told, and to bring to light the characters that we rarely see. As the founder of Djini Productions, her belief in having diverse perspectives represented behind the camera will add to today’s narrative landscape. Her goal is to develop feature films that bring the experience of our communities to life; not only stories which speak to the concerns of our time, but also provide entertaining portrayals through diverse cast and crew. She is a recent recipient of the Jerome Foundation 2019 Minnesota Film, Video and Digital Production Grant.
Alison first joined MN WIFT in 2017, and has been serving on the board since August 2019.
Kelly Pratt is the founder of the “So, do IT Collective” and a mentor to creative entrepreneurs. Kelly was the director of production at the MN Film Board for more than 10 yeas and publisher of the Minnesota Production Guide for 17 years. It was during this time that she realized the importance of building community. Together the MFB and the local community of crew, actors, businesses and government entities created a welcoming location for visiting filmmakers.
Kelly served on the board in the early days of MN WIFT. She’s looking forward to bringing her knowledge of nonprofit governance, board development and community building to MN WIFT in 2020 - an important year in US Women’s history.
Cynthia Uhrich is the owner and director of the fiscally-sponsored production company IN THE MOMENT FILMS. Its mission is to provide filmmaking opportunities for women in front of, and behind the camera. She’s directed and produced M4W, Robert in the Bedroom, Code Green, Everyone Goes in the Lake, Oh My Stars (screenplay by Lorna Landvik and recipient of the Audience Choice Award at Twin Cities Film Fest) and Misplaced Trust. She has collaborated on many short screenplays with other filmmakers as a screenwriter. Her work has been selected to screen at the Twin Cities Film Festival, Minneapolis St. Paul International Film Festival, Frozen Film Fest, Culver City Film Fest, International KidsNFilm Festival, Docs Without Borders, Great Lakes International, and the Sedona International Film Festival. www.InTheMomentStudio.biz
Dawn UrichDawn is a craft service specialist in the Minneapolis production community since 1997. Since then, her work includes craft on commercials, feeding crews on smaller film projects as well as day playing on major motion pictures. She was also the co-creator of Diamonds Coffee Shoppe in 2002, located in Nordeast Minneapolis. Lately she has also added Black Car service to her endeavors as the owner/operator of DAU Transportation. Dawn has been a MN WIFT Board member for more than 5 years, most recently serving as Treasurer. She looks forward to continuing to support Minnesota Women in Film & Television.
Prospective Board Members
Carrie Bush has been working for fifteen years traveling across the country and around the world establishing herself in the film and commercial industry. She is an assistant director, producer and a director. She has directed four award-winning short films and a web series with a focus on telling stories that make audiences laugh yet also allow people to walk away with a new perspective.
Amanda Day has been an extremely active member of the MN film and TV community for 15 years. She has worked with the MN Film & TV Board as a producer and event host, volunteered with the TCFF for 9 years, been a judge and participant in numerous film festivals, has hosted and spoken on film and TV screenings and conferences, mentored many actors and worked as a full time actor, voice talent and host for 10 years. She has been the lead in over 25 feature films and worked on over 70 shorts. She has a background in business and has branched into producing, locations and account management. She is passionate about the film community in MN, has a deep love for cooking food for her friends and family and loves to travel.
Kathy Ferrey is a founding member of Minnesota Women in Film and Television, established in 2005.
She has produced independent films and worked on studio features for Paramount, Columbia, and MGM.
Her television credits include network series, pilots and movies for Showtime, Viacom, Columbia Tristar, Sony, USA Network, Comedy Central, The WB, CBS, Miramax, Touchstone, ABC, and Discovery.
Kathy spent a year at Twin Cities Public Television as the Series Managing Producer on the popular PBS Kids – DragonflyTV.
Kathy continues to support film and television, in addition to working on broadcast, digital, web and print media.
Linda Walen is an experienced live event, web-stream, and video producer, dedicated to quality, leadership, and a keen focus on internal and external communication experiences.
As a commercial rep, she provides creative solutions for broadcast communications thru connecting top talent with agencies throughout the Midwest.
Sandra is a change management business consultant and independent filmmaker. Sandra began as an actor then moved into independent film production as a writer, producer and director and has supported local casting and casting directors. She’s had films screened locally, nationally and internationally. She makes a commitment to continued learning and is studying or has studied with the New York Film Academy, HUGE Improv Theatre, the Guthrie Theatre, Springboard for the Arts, Film North, etc. She frequently supports and attends film screenings, theatre and improv. Sandra has been involved in several local and national film, documentary, and screenwriting organizations and has been a member of MN WIFT for several years.