The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees Local 695’s newly formed Committee on Equity, Diversity & Outreach will host a live-streamed, public event August 1 on the challenges faced by sound and video engineers of color in the entertainment industry.
Titled Diversity in 695: A Conversation, the event will feature a panel of highly accomplished professionals, representing diverse crafts, genders and ethnicities, in a discussion of the critical importance of addressing racial inequity and achieving a more representative workforce in Hollywood. Dr. Anna Everett, Professor Emeritus of Film and Media Studies at the University of California, Santa Barbara, will lead the conversation and provide important historical context.
The event will explore the collective experiences of the panelists at different stages in their careers. While progress on diversity continues, this conversation will highlight the persistence of racial inequity as a significant barrier to success in the entertainment industry. “At Local 695 we continue to make greater inclusion an absolute priority,” said Local 695 president Mark Ulano. “By listening to our members, we constantly re-evaluate our course of action to best serve everyone in our union. We’ve pledged resources to provide substantive training and outreach, nurturing new talent and giving them a genuine chance to thrive.”
Dr. Everett is the author of several books on diversity and racial equality in media including Returning the Gaze: A Genealogy of Black Film Criticism, 1909-1949; Learning Race and Ethnicity: Youth and Digital Media (written for the MacArthur Foundation’s Digital Media, Youth and Learning program) and the award-winning Digital Diaspora: A Race for Cyberspace. During her career at UCSB, Dr. Everett served as Acting Associate Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity and Academic Policy; Chair of the UCSB Department of Film and Media Studies; and Director of the UCSB Center for Black Studies. She is a two-time recipient of the Fulbright Senior Scholar Award.
Other panelists will include:
Willie Burton, Sound Mixer (Tenet)
Veronica Kahn, Sound Utility (The Mandalorian)
Susan Moore-Chong, Sound Mixer (Bones)
Chauncy Godwin, Video Engineer (X-Men: First Class)
Anthony Ortiz, Sound Mixer (Vida)
Douglas W. Shamburger, Boom Operator (Tenet)
Yohannes Skoda, Sound Utility (It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia)
The event will run from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. PDT. Local 695 is planning a follow-up, town hall-style meeting exclusively for its members. The event will continue the conversation on diversity with members of color as speakers.
Click here to register for the event www.local695.com/diversity