Meet the team - Gemma

In our series of Meet the Team blogs, we've been taking a look behind the scenes and getting to know the faces behind the festival. 

Today it's my turn! Here's a little bit of what I do as COO, Strategy & Operations: 



What is your environmental &/or film passion?

When it comes to the environment, I'm always interested in how us urbanites stay connected to nature and make our communities more sustainable. City life can feel hectic and wonderful and hard all at the same time. But what I know for sure is we have more power than we think to stand up for the environment in how we live our life, the food we eat, the stuff we buy and how we come together to get our voices heard. I want to help make that happen.

I've always loved going to the movies. What makes a film stand out for me is when it makes me sit up and pay attention. Whether it's the sideways look at the world from Wes Anderson, a good action thriller like The Dark Knight, or a social impact doc like Blood In the Mobile, these characters and their stories stay with me for years.


Why did you want to join the SFGFF team?

One of my earliest school memories was someone from the local parks coming to show us a film about how litter can harm wildlife. I was horrified seeing a mouse stuck at the bottom of a jar. I set my family to work and was vigilant about recycling. Other environmental campaigns would follow. With my parents often on the frontline.

I think about that now, because it was actually surprising to me that my love of film and passion for the environment would come together. 

I first joined as a volunteer for the 3rd SF Green Film Festival, working on the Lights! Camera! Take Action! I remember being so excited to find like-minded people. A team that cared deeply about the environment and were using film to get people energized. 

Sometimes us environmental folk can get overwhelmed by how high a mountain we have to climb, but here were filmmakers telling incredible stories and bringing audiences together to learn and do something about it.  When I had the opportunity to come on to the team full-time I jumped at the chance. 


What is your role in the team? 

Right now, with the Festival a few months away, I'm focused on fundraising and marketing to make the 2016 Festival the biggest yet. I'm also gearing up our Lights! Camera! Take Action! program to make sure every audience member that leaves the theater feels engaged and inspired.

With an amazing but small team my role can change from day to day.  It's exciting to be shaping an incredible event with a fantastic community of people that I know can make a difference. 


What are you most excited about for the 6th SF Green Film Festival?   

I'm most excited about Opening Night at the Castro Theater. Seeing the Festival grow so quickly over the past few years has been incredible. There's no doubt more people need to see these films and with the Castro we can do that. 

I can't wait for the Wurlitzer to start playing!


Find out more about this year's Festival, coming April 14 - 20.