Sheila Ganz directed, produced and edited the Emmy-nominated documentary ON LIFE’S TERMS: MOTHERS IN RECOVERY, Certificate of Recognition, California State Legislature and Certificate of Honor, City and County of San Francisco Board of Supervisors. Ganz first documentary UNLOCKING THE HEART OF ADOPTION , Congressional Coalition on Adoption Institute, Angels in Adoption Award. Both films continue to screen in educational institutions, adoption agencies and substance use treatment programs. Ganz has been a volunteer of the warm helpline for Bay Area Birth Mother’s Assoc., since 2001. Ganz taught filmmaking at Film Arts Foundation and guest lectured at City College of San Francisco and Academy of Art University. Ganz wrote and directed two stage plays PRETEND IT DIDN’T HAPPEN about relinquishing her daughter for adoption, and LEAVING JOE about domestic violence. Before becoming a documentary filmmaker, Ganz was a painter and sculptor. Her work has exhibited in the San Francisco Bay Area and Greater Boston Area. School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. BA Sculpture, MA Interdisciplinary Arts, San Francisco State University. Ganz is a Black Belt in Karate. Ganz is deeply committed to giving voice to the lives of misunderstood and marginalized women, men and children.
Ellie Shukert has two sons with mental illness and worries all the time that they could end up homeless when she and her husband are not around anymore. Or even before, as they are adults and a psychotic break could make them unresponsive to help. Ellie has advocated for persons living with serious mental illness (SMI) for 20 years. She writes to politicians and the powers that be to help the SMI get off the streets, out of prison, and into proper care and supportive housing. Funding is difficult. Stigma. Ignorance. Ellie’s personal essay Dorothea Dix Reborn was published in the award-winning book Tomorrow Was Yesterday by Dede Ranahan with 64 co-authors. Ellie sat for four weeks at Teresa’s trial in San Francisco along with other mothers. She introduced Sheila Ganz to Teresa’s sister, Frances, who agreed to have Teresa’s story in the documentary PIECE OF MIND. “I’m going to work till I die to motivate people in charge to develop a humane healthcare system with equal attention to SMI.”
Nora Kroll-Rosenbaum is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and Grammy Award-winner, she writes music for concert halls, film and theatrical stages internationally, film scores include: THE SHATTERING, THE APOCALYPSE ACCORDING TO DORIS, JOBURG, MESMERIZE ME, BACK TO THE FRONT and TEMPORARY OBSESSION, among others, in addition to collaborative work on numerous projects including KINECT DISNEYLAND ADVENTURES, CRAFT IN AMERICAN, VITO, IN JUSTICE, AMERICAN MASTERS, ACE VENTURA PET DETECTIVE JR., KUNG FU PANDA 2 Video Game, THE TOURNAMENT, among others. Among her documentary film scores is ON LIFE’S TERMS: MOTHERS IN RECOVERY. Kroll-Rosenbaum won the ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composers Award for her work, Two Songs from DAYS OF INNOCENCE, published by Boosey & Hawkes and released by Vital Records. From 2003-2005, Kroll-Rosenbaum served as the Director of the Composers’ Forum at The Juilliard School, and as a Teaching Artist for the New York Philharmonic. As a co-founder and six-year co-director of the interdisciplinary new music group, VisionIntoArt, she collaborated on creating multimedia programming and music for over 30 productions that were presented throughout the United States. Kroll-Rosenbaum has received grants from The American Music Center, Meet the Composer, The New York State Council on the Arts, ASCAP, NFAA, among others. In 2009, Kroll-Rosenbaum served as co-librettist and executive music producer for the Carnegie Hall world premiere of Langston Hughes’ ASK YOUR MAMA, a multimedia collaboration between Jessye Norman, Laura Karpman and The Roots.
Animator and Designer
Jennine Lanouette has worked with Pixar Animation Studios, Independent Television Service, Film Arts Foundation, Squaw Valley Community of Writers and numerous screenwriters, directors and documentary filmmakers including: SMITTEN and FOLLOWING SEAN, Point of View Series, and Emmy-nominated ON LIFE’S TERMS: MOTHERS IN RECOVERY by director/producer, Sheila Ganz. Jennine has taught story structure analysis at Pixar, Lucasfilm and online at screentakes.com, where she has also blogged extensively and posted instructional videos. Her articles on story structure have appeared in Release Print and Filmmaker magazines. As a free-lance journalist covering American Independent film, she has written for Premiere, The Village Voice, Ms., Sight and Sound, Screen International, and The Independent.
Nancy has worked as a director, cinematographer and producer. She applies her natural composition and lighting abilities, and extensive still photography experience to her video productions. Her motion work, which includes online advertising, fashion videos, documentaries and interviews. Nancy is also a successful pro still photographer who shoots Fashion and Lifestyle imagery for clients like: The BBC, Eddie Bauer, Fox, The Gap, Seventeen Magazine, Parade Magazine, and Town & Country. Nancy has also photographed a number of celebrities including: Robin Williams, Russell Brand, Danny Glover, Robin Wright, Boys to Men, Tyler James Williams, Jade Anderson, and NBA star Chris Mullin. Her fine art images have been exhibited in prestigious galleries in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York.
Shani Heckman is a social justice film creator based in San Francisco, California. Her films have screened internationally and funded by San Francisco Arts Commission, Horizons Fund, NEA, Gerbode, and Open Meadows foundation for her films and events. She earned her BA in Economics from UC-Santa Cruz and her MFA in Cinema at San Francisco State University. She runs the social justice non-profit, Shanestar Productions Inc., a 501c3 that supports educational media production for LGBTQ people.
Heidi’s experience includes: production, development, scriptwriting, videography, and post-production, radio, voice-over, broadcasting and graphics. Excellent communication styles developed from her professional background with diverse and large groups as a producer, post-production supervisor, project manager, teacher and group leader. Experienced collaborator with varied participant populations, including senior management and military officials, middle managers, educators, administrators, corporate clients, independent filmmakers, musicians, artists and complementary medicine practitioners.
Alisha McCutcheon is a West Virginia native, has adopted San Francisco as her home. Her love of movies started in the one-screen theater of her tiny home town. Since starting her adventures in making films, she has directed two shorts and worked as Assistant Director or in Camera Department for several features and numerous shorts both documentary and scripted of every genre.
Jennie-Sue is an alum of Lucasfilm, NBC News, and the White House Office for Women’s Initiatives and Outreach. Trained as an A.D. under Danielle Rigby at the Connecticut Film Industry Training Program, she has worked as First A.D., Producer, and Cameraperson on a number of documentary and feature film projects. Her work as a director/producer has been seen at festivals around the globe and on the Investigation Discovery Channel, Travel Channel, and Biography Channel.