Chair: Dr. Susan Liddy
Dr. Susan Liddy is chair of WFT Ireland and a board member of Women in Film and Television International. In addition to her work with WFT she is on the board of the Writers Guild of Ireland and Raising Films Ireland. She lectures in the Department of Media and Communication Studies in MIC, University of Limerick Susan’s work includes Women in the Irish Film Industry: Stories and Storytellers (ed. 2020) and Women in the International Film Industry: Policy, Practice and Power (ed. 2020). She is co-authoring two industry reports: for the BAI and Raising Films Ireland. Her co-edited collection Media Work, Mothers and Motherhood: Negotiating the International Audio Visual Industry (with Anne O Brien) will be published by Routledge in April 2020. She is currently working on a collection about ageing women in the international screen industries. Susan is the founder and co-director of Catalyst International Film Festival, Limerick – a festival that prioritises films from underrepresented groups, in front of and behind the camera
Vice-Chair: Vanessa Gildea
Vanessa is an award winning Producer / Director / Writer, Vice-Chair of Women in Film & TV Ireland and a lecturer at the National Film School & Department of Humanities IADT. She has a BA in Liberal Arts from UL and an MA in Screenwriting from the NFS, IADT. She has received five IFTA nominations including as writer/director of The White Dress, and as producer in the Feature Documentary category for Dambé – The Mali Project, John Ford – Dreaming the Quiet Man, as Producer / Director of The 34th – A history of Marriage Equality in Ireland and as part of the team that made the IFTA winning 1916 The Irish Rebellion. Vanessa’s credits as writer/director include I AM IRELAND – an art dance commission film for Culture Night and RTÉ Arts & Culture 2020. The Lunch experimental short film currently in post-production, this project is the recipient of the SDGI ARRI ALEXA TAKE Award, Feature documentary. The 34th – currently on Netflix UK & Ireland. The Arts Council Project Award film and multi-award-winning The Abandoning, Keeping the Beast at Bay – a short documentary made for Venom Films. A half documentary O Béal go Bhéal um Nollaig for RTÉ, and The White Dress, winner of five awards at film festivals and an IFTA nomination. Vanessa was the first recipient of the Tyrone Guthrie Film Bursary award and has received the Arts Council Film Bursary & Film Project Award. She works freelance as a producer and director with a variety of companies including COCO TV, Harvest Films and RTÉ Arts & Culture on projects as diverse as the Culture Night Live concert at Collins Barracks, the RTÉ Tent at the All Together Now Festival, The Irish Folk Awards Film Tributes, Dermot Bannon’s Incredible Homes and I’m Roger Casement.
Liz is a producer, feature film and TV drama director and screenwriter best known for her film Goldfish Memory (2003). Her first feature was Gold in the Streets (1996), starring James Belushi, Ian Hart, Jared Harris and Aiden Gillen, produced by Noel Pearson. For TV, Liz has directed RTE’s Raw, TV3’s Deception, the 6-part comedy series Hardy Bucks and the second units of Camelot (Starz Encore) and The Santa Incident (Hallmark). She has also directed EastEnders for the BBC and RTE’s The Clinic, Hide and Seek and The Big Bow Wow, and served as Consultant Director on Love is the Drug,winner of the IFTA for best television drama. As a documentary director, Liz directed A Story With Me In It, for which she was nominated for an IFTA award for best TV director (2012), as well as Consuming Passions (series 1 & 2), Written Off? (Series 1 & 2), Burma – The Generals’ Genocide (RTE) and Sport Matters (Setanta). She has also worked extensively as a First Assistant Director in TV and feature films for directors such as Barry Levinson and Todd Haynes, among others, culminating in her writing “Running the Show – the Essential Guide to Being a First Assistant Director,” published by Focal Press (US). Recently, Liz produced the last two seasons of Vikings, the MGM drama series and is currently Story Producer on the MGM/Netflix series Vikings Valhalla.
Aoife is a senior associate in the media and entertainment department of Philip Lee, specialising in advising on film and television financing and production. She represents a broad range of media clients, including numerous production companies, financiers, banks, international film studios and film industry bodies. Aoife is a graduate of Dublin City University and Dublin Institute of Technology. She qualified as a solicitor in 2013 and worked in a large corporate firm in Dublin before joining Philip Lee in 2017. Aoife has lectured on the Law Society Diploma in Arts, Entertainment and Media Law.
Jaro Waldeck started her journey in cinematography with undergraduate photography studies in the USA. Soon, she realised she was interested in movement in her images and made the transition to cinematography studies at Columbia College Chicago. She graduated in 2008 and was placed on a coveted internship with Oscar nominated DOP Phedon Papamichael, ASC (Sideways, Walkd the Line, Nebraska, Ford vs. Ferrari) on a movie “W.” which he was shooting for Oliver Stone. After the internship, Jaro moved back home to Prague, Czech Republic, where she pursued further cinematography studies at the world renowned film school Film and Television Faculty of the Academy of Performing Arts (FAMU). She studied under the guidance of accomplished and award winning cinematographers such as Miroslav Ondricek (Amadeus) and Vladimir Smutny (The Painted Bird), and graduated with a Masters Degree in Cinematography in 2011. The following year Jaro moved to Ireland, where she’s worked on short narrative and documentary films, commercial and corporate productions and kept up her photography work alongside it all. She’s also collaborated with some of her former classmates from Columbia College and FAMU on a documentary feature and served as a camera operator on a season of reality television series “Survivor.” Jaro is a member of the Czech Society of Cinematographers and a board member of Women in Film and TV Ireland. Besides shooting she has also passed on her knowledge through teaching at the English language cinematography department at FAMU, the former Dublin film hub Filmbase, and at Colaiste Dhulaigh in Coolock. She has been nominated five times for her cinematography on short films and turned three of them into wins.
Dublin based producer Fiona Kinsella has over twenty years experience in the Irish and International Film and Television Industry. Over her career, she has worked with some of the leading Irish Directors. She established Jumper Productions in 2009. Fiona has produced an array of commercials and online content for brands including, Carlsberg, O2, RTE, Jameson, as well as a number of award winning short films, and has provided production services for artists including Rihanna and One Direction. Fiona’s heartfelt passion for film, coupled with her extensive experience in film industry training and development in the UK, gives her an instinctive ability to bring out the very best in the many talented people with whom she works. She has recently become Head of Production with Tile Media, and oversees a slate of feature films and TV Drama.
Marissa Aroy received an Emmy for the documentary “Sikhs in America,” and an Emmy nomination for the documentary on Filipino American history called ‘The Delano Manongs.” A Fulbright scholar, Aroy was named “One of the Legendary Filipino Americans” by Buzzfeed. She was the recipient of the first ever Hatsuye Yamasaki Award for Visionary Leadership from the College of William and Mary and has recently been appointed in Filmmaker-in-Residence at the same college. She is currently working on a historical documentary on the Philippine American War and teaches film classes at Trinity College Dublin.
With over 30 years experience in the entertainment industry, Bowe Communications is one of Ireland’s leading entertainment PR companies with a speciality in film. They have handled the unit publicity for some of the most high profile shoots in Ireland such as King Arthur, Veronica Guerin and The Last Duel and the theatrical release of films such as The Twilight Saga, Twelve Years a Slave and Knives Out. They also manage national film festival publicity along with corporate comms. Kate produced the award-winning short film “A Woman’s Hair” and is delighted to serve on the board of Women in Film & Television (Ire).
After 16 years working in London for leading TV and Media companies, IMG, ITV, Mentorn and Renegade Pictures, Mary returned home and joined COCO. Mary is responsible for all production and management accounts, business affairs and contracts. She takes the fear out of finance. Mary is also a fountain of knowledge when it comes to the lunchtime delicacies that Ranelagh has to offer.
WFT Executive Administrator:
When she’s not uploading news or manning zooms, Gemma Creagh is a nomadic writer, filmmaker, and journalist. She was born in Cork, currently lives in Dublin, and has studied in Belfast and Galway. There she graduated with a First from NUIG’s MA Writing programme. Gemma was the writer and co-producer of the five-part comedy Rental Boys for RTÉ’s Storyland, and has gone on to write, direct and produce several shorts and webseries which screened at festivals around the world. At present, she is currently co-writing a feature, Fair Game with her writing partner and fellow WFT member Maureen O’Connell under Screen Ireland’s Spotlight Development Scheme. Her script Detour was shortlisted for the 2020 Dun Laoghaire First Frames Scheme and is presently in consideration as a finalist in the CinemaStreet Women’s Short Screenplay Competition. Spoiling Sunset, a comical stage play, was performed in the Jerome Hynes One Act Play series in 2014. Gemma has penned articles for magazines, industry websites and national newspapers and works as the assistant editor for Film Ireland Magazine. She’s a contributor to RTE Radio One on occasion.