As summer heats up, New York Women in Film & Television gears up for the start of our new year – and with it, new faces join our leadership team!
As a 501(c)3 non-profit, NYWIFT is governed by an 18 member Board of Directors, elected by the membership in late Spring. This diverse, accomplished group of women are at the top of their game in TV, film and digital media. They steer NYWIFT in advocating for equality, providing unique professional development opportunities, funding women filmmakers, and celebrating women’s achievements.
Meet Tracy Daniels.
NYWIFT Board Member Tracy Daniels
How did you first get involved with NYWIFT?
About three years ago I began seeking a support base for my film career and attended a NYWIFT Night Out event. I had the good fortune of meeting [Executive Director] Terry Lawler who was incredibly gracious and encouraged me to join by the end of the night. It was not a hard sell as I was thrilled to learn of all the incredible work the organization does to support women in the industry.
Why do you love NYWIFT?
What I love most about NYWIFT is the talented community of women I meet and work with and the invaluable friendships I’ve formed over the past few years. It’s so important for women to have a space where they can learn and grow outside of the confines of the persistent inequities afflicting our industry, and I think NYWIFT does a great job providing that space.
With member Flor Tejada (left) on the set of NYWIFT Archive Project interviews in November 2016. Daniels is co-producer.
Tell us about what you do outside of NYWIFT.
Filmmaking currently consumes my life so when I’m not working on films or NYWIFT projects I devote time to personal interests. I mostly enjoy catching up with friends and family. I get inspiration roaming around museums, galleries, bookstores and my favorite parts of New York, which tend to be historical. I also love treating myself to a movie matinee where I feel like I have the place to myself. One of my besties curates incredible shows at National Sawdust in Brooklyn, which gives me a great intellectual boost. If I had more free time I’d surf and ride horses.
Inequality in film, television and digital media has been a hot topic in the media lately, and righting that imbalance has always been a big part of NYWIFT’s mission. What are your thoughts on the problem? And how should it be solved?
Facing unequivocal statistics and ever shifting distribution strategies women, and especially women of color, must continue to find ways to assert themselves in the industry. Build a tribe to support and encourage you. Reject the negativity as it will only discourage you. I’m guided by my passion and operate on sheer will and tenacity. There aren’t many organizations focused solely on women’s value in the industry so it’s imperative that NYWIFT not only continues to grow our membership but also build alliances to strengthen our resources in education, opportunity and mentorship.
What’s the best TV show/movie/web series you’ve seen recently? Why?
I just saw Wonder Woman and it was one of the most satisfying theatrical experiences I’ve had in a while. I loved every minute of it from the writing to the action sequences; it’s just so so good! I’ve been inspired by the abundance of recent indie fare and The Fits, American Honey, Beasts of No Nation and Moonlight in particular blew me away with essential storytelling and incredible visuals. Women are increasingly killing it on the small screen where Preacher, Big Little Lies, Insecure and Queen Sugar currently have me engaged for great writing, performances and drama that leaves me shewk!
The short After Words, is produced by Tracy Daniels and directed by member Maria Bunai
What are your plans for the summer?
I’m heading to the Woods Hole and Big Sur film festivals where a short I produced with fellow member Maria Bunai will play. Following that I’ll be prepping my first doc feature about the rise of the Latin Hustle during the early 70’s in the South Bronx. I hope to catch a screening of Geremy Jasper’s Patti Cake$, and will be in dogged pursuit of a ticket to the premiere of Hayao Miyazaki’s The Castle of Cagliostro.
Contact Tracy at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Learn more about the rest of NYWIFT’s 18 member Board of Directors on our website. And stay tuned to the blog this summer as we get to know the newest additions!