JR McMillian (President)
J.R. McMillan has a BA from Marshall University with a concentration in Journalism and Mass Communications and has worked as an opinion writer, columnist, photographer, publicist and public radio producer. Following a career shift toward industrial design and brand identity, McMillan founded Avatar Creative Technology, providing strategic insight for the art and design industry with an emphasis on community building, open source development and environmental sustainability. In addition to technology solutions, McMillan also works actively as a screenwriter and script consultant, delivering marketing strategy for the independent film industry. An associate member of the Writers Guild of America East, J.R. McMillan teaches workshops in script development to aspiring screenwriters.
Alan Jazak (Vice President)
Alan Jazak is a freelance graphic designer with his own venture called Formation Studio. He handles a broad range of design projects from retail, print collateral and identity to event promotion, direct mail and advertising design. His goal is to transform information into meaningful communication that will invite, excite and ignite.
Bill Sturges (Treasurer)
is an accountant and the CFO of Stauf’s.
Bob Fitrakis is a Political Science Professor in the Social and Behavioral Sciences department at Columbus State Community College, where he won the Distinguished Teaching Award in 1991. He was a Ford Foundation Fellow to the Michigan State legislature in 1975. Fitrakis earned a J.D. from the Ohio State University Mortitz College of Law in 2002. His Ph.D is in Political Science from Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. He is the author of books and has appeared in numerous documentary films. Dr. Fitrakis produced an interactive educational CDROM on hate groups in Ohio. Dr. Fitrakis was a columnist and investigative reporter for Columbus Alive from 1996-2002, a local alternative weekly newspaper, and was awarded First Place for Best Coverage of Government from the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists (OSPJ). He written for both national and local publications and has produced a variety of television and radio shows over the years and co-produced the film entitled “The Other Side of Free Trade”.
Lori Gum is the Program/Columbus Pride Coordinator for Stonewall Columbus and has extensive experience in event planning, project management, and has worked in the film industry as a writer, producer, and director.
Zach Waymer is the Director of Economic Advancement at Ohio Board of Regents. Zach has served on a variety of non profit boards.
Robert Metzger is an award winning photographer and filmmaker. He is currently the Wholesale Branding and Marketing manager for Stauf’s.
Walter has a Bachelor of Fine Arts, Cinema Production from The Ohio State University. Mr. Burbach is an Ohio Arts Council funded screenwriter and has worked on a dozen independent films in Los Angeles as well as producing and writing his own feature film. He is also president of the board of directors of the Ohio State University, Department of Photography & Cinema Alumni Society.
Adela has a PhD, French from The Ohio State University with specialization in: French-language cinema. Her research interests are: Post-Holocaust / Postcolonial / Women’s cinema, Testimonial visual narratives, Franco-American relations in cinema, Film festivals. She currently lectures at both The Ohio State University and at Ohio Wesleyan University
Staff-Susan B. Halpern, Executive Director
After receiving her MFA in Media Studies Susan B. Halpern worked as an editor in Broadcast Television and continued to create award winning independent films. While in graduate school she created the Columbus Video Festival, first housed at the Ohio State University and then migrating to the Acme Art Company. In the late 80′s she created (with Julia Reichert and OVRMAC) the first ever Ohio Independents PBS Program Fair, where Ohio independent filmmakers’ works were picked up for broadcast by PBS. In the 90′s Ms. Halpern continued to work in television and in corporate video while exhibiting her own personal film work worldwide. She is a six-time recipient of the Ohio Arts Council’s Individual Fellowship Award. She has previously served a board member for the Ohio Valley Regional Media Arts Coalition and for Diverse Media Zone, Inc. In 2003 she became the Executive Director of the Film Council Of Greater Columbus, Inc. aka the Columbus Film Council.