Jul 16, 2021
At the 2021-22 Winnipeg Film Group Annual General Meeting on March 25, 2021, six new board members were elected and our new Board Chair was named. To help you get acquainted with them, they’ve written a statement of their intent as a new board, along with bios of each of them:
WFG Board of Directors’ Statement
We, the newly elected Winnipeg Film Group board, understand that there has been structural racism, sexism, transphobia, homophobia, and ableism present in the Winnipeg Film Group structure that has harmed people among our board, staff, and membership. We are dedicated to a collective remembering of these harms. We are in the process of listening to staff, membership, and the broader WFG community to understand the harm that has been done. This will be a slow, qualitative process. We strive for growth and humility, and ask to be held accountable by staff, membership, and the community. We understand that this involves a process of building and earning trust. We are dedicated to making informed structural changes that will prevent harmful actions from systemic enactment, and to putting proactive structures in place to instill racial, ability, class, gender, and sexuality equity.
The initiatives we are actioning include the following:
- Creation of a personnel committee to improve support available to staff and to attend to staff input in order to contribute to a collective organizational memory
- Creation of a policy committee to revise and strengthen a respectful workplace environment, and creation of hiring policies that promote the diversity of senior staff and board members
- Formation of a transparent and protected grievance process and consulting with Human Resource professionals
- Quarterly integrated meetings between the board, staff, and membership
- Commitment to increased accessibility
- Creation of the Executive Director search committee with an emphasis on community input
- Creating more pathways for BIPOC, 2SLGBTQIA+ and emerging filmmakers to access the Winnipeg Film Group
Initiatives and updates will continue to be shared in order to promote transparency, collaboration, and accountability to and with the Winnipeg Film Group staff, membership, and community at large.
For those interested in participating in any of the committees or initiatives above, or to contact the WFG Board of Directors for other matters, please reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As we begin the search for a new Executive Director, we are committed to selecting a candidate who reflects a demonstrated record of collaboration, a commitment to racial, ability, class, gender, and sexuality equity.
Finally, as filmmakers and film-goers ourselves, we are dedicated to fostering accessible and inclusive resources and spaces to benefit all Winnipeggers who enjoy and create cinema. We will continue to advocate for Winnipeg and Canadian filmmakers at home and across the world.
-WFG Board of Directors
Meet the Board Members:
Kevin Tabachnick – Co-Chair
Kevin Tabachnick is a filmmaker born and raised on Treaty 1 Territory (Winnipeg, Manitoba). Kevin started filmmaking in 2014 and has since shot various documentaries and shorts films alongside instructing at the Winnipeg Film Group and helping emerging filmmakers get their first projects started. Aside from filmmaking, Kevin previously worked multiple years throughout Winnipeg’s non-profit sector before starting law school in 2019.
Sarah Simpson-Yellowquill – C0-Chair
Sarah Simpson-Yellowquill is a multi-talented Indigenous Woman, born and raised on Treaty 1 Territory, (Winnipeg, Manitoba). Sarah is a filmmaker with extensive filmmaking experience, who is dedicated to her craft and has made multiple short films that have screened at North American festivals. She strives to create stories and to help others share their stories through the medium of filmmaking. Sarah went from thinking filmmaking could only be a hobby, to making it a full-time career for herself; As a Production Manager, for various productions and the Indigenous Programs Admin Assistant & Coordinator for CBC New Indigenous Voices training program at the National Screen Institute. She also sits as Co-Chair for the WNDX Festival of Moving Images and is Vice-Chair of The Winnipeg Film Group’s Board of Directors.
Mariana Munoz Gomez – Secretary
Mariana Muñoz Gomez is an artist, writer, and curator. They are a Latinx settler of colour born in Mexico and based on Treaty 1 Territory in Winnipeg. Their lens-based practice involves a variety of media including text works, screen prints, video art, and photography. Their interests lie in the potentiality of art and language in (re)envisioning temporality, relation, and place. Mariana works with a number of local collectives including Carnation Zine and window winnipeg. They hold a BFA (Honours) from the University of Manitoba School of Art and an MA in Cultural Studies: Curatorial Practices from the University of Winnipeg.
Reza Rezai – Co-Treasurer
Reza Rezaï is a Winnipeg based artist, writer + educator.
Melody Malakooti – Co-Treasurer
“I know nothing,
I understand nothing,
I am unaware of myself.
I am in love,
But with whom I do not know.
My heart is at the same time
Both full and empty of love.”
Allison Stevens (she/her) is a queer, feminist artist and filmmaker from Winnipeg, Manitoba. Her work seeks to embrace the monstrosity of the self as a rebellion against societally defined images of “appropriate” bodies and ways of being. Her artistic practice is a practice of healing. With raw vulnerability, she explores and exposes questions of identity, self-acceptance, and relationships between people, work, and nature in the capitalist / patriarchical / heteronormative paradigm. She uses an ever-expanding variety of mediums (stop motion, digital animation, clay sculptures, paper cut-outs, markers, pen and ink), media formats (digital video, 16mm, super 8mm), and found objects (the weirder the better) to infuse a sense of physicality to her work. Her films have played at festivals in Manitoba, Ontario, and British Columbia and on CBC Gem. Allison has a Digital Media Design diploma (2013) from Red River College and a Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Winnipeg (2010). She was mentored by Leslie Supnet in the 2019-2020 Mentoring Artists for Women’s Art (MAWA) Foundation Mentorship Program.
Bisong Taiwo is a Nigerian Canadian filmmaker based in Winnipeg, Manitoba. Bisong’s films merge spirituality with genre, and over the last five years, he has written, directed, and produced three short films, a narrative feature, and a documentary short. Bisong’s short film, Saving Grace, screened at the 2018 Gimli Film Festival and was acquired by the Winnipeg Film Group for distribution. His short film, The Test, will screen at the 2021 Gimli Film Festival. Bisong’s first narrative feature, Time Sleeper, is a sci-fi drama that screened at the 2020 Afro Prairie Film Festival, where he was named with the Emerging Filmmaker Award, presented by the ReelWorld Film Festival. Time Sleeper also screened at the 2020 Reelworld Film Festival. His documentary film, Memoirs of Salone, a collection of memories about the people and culture of Sierra Leone, screened at the 2020 Toronto International Nollywood Film Festival. Bisong’s dream is to produce films that attain a level of spiritual quality matched only by the saints; simultaneously entertaining his audiences while getting them to ponder on the mysteries of theology.