Catherine Gund, Senior Director
Catherine Gund, the Founder and Director of Aubin Pictures, is an Emmy-nominated producer, director, writer, and activist. Her media work focuses on strategic and sustainable social transformation, arts and culture, HIV/AIDS and reproductive health, and the environment. Her films - which include Chavela, Dispatches from Cleveland, American Rhapsody (in progress), Born to Fly, What’s On Your Plate?, A Touch of Greatness, Motherland Afghanistan, Making Grace, On Hostile Ground, and Hallelujah! - have screened around the world in festivals, theaters, museums, and schools; on PBS, the Discovery Channel, and the Sundance Channel.
Gund currently serves on several boards including Art Matters, Solidaire, Osa Conservation and The George Gund Foundation. She co-founded the Third Wave Foundation which supports young women and transgender youth, and DIVA TV, an affinity group of ACT UP/NY. She was the founding director of BENT TV, the video workshop for gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender youth. She was on the founding boards of Bard Early Colleges, Iris House, Working Films, Reality Dance Company and The Sister Fund and has also served for MediaRights.org, The Robeson Fund of the Funding Exchange, The Vera List Center for Art and Politics at the New School, and the Astraea Foundation.
Gund’s most recent project, Dispatches from Cleveland, consists of five short films that look at the police murder of 12-year-old Tamir Rice and show how people joined together to vote out the prosecutor who didn’t have their backs. Her other film Born to Fly pushes the boundaries between action and art, daring us to join choreographer Elizabeth Streb and her dancers in pursuit of human flight. She lives in NYC with her four children.
Daresha Kyi, Director/Producer: Chavela & Producer: Dispatches from Cleveland
Daresha Kyi is an award-winning filmmaker and television producer with over 25 years in the business. After working in the New York City independent film community, she decided to attend film school and became a member of the scholars program at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts where she graduated with a degree in Film & TV. She also won a full fellowship from TriStar Pictures to attend the Directors Program at The American Film Institute (AFI) based on her multiple award-winning short films. She wrote, produced, directed and co-starred in Land Where My Fathers Died with Isaiah Washington. She also served as executive producer of the award-winning short, Thugs, The Musical! starring David Alan Grier and Margaret Cho. Most recently she was a field producer on Totally Biased with W. Kamau Bell, story producer on La Voz Kids (Telemundo's The Voice for children), and the writer for the weekend morning talk show Arise & Shine, hosted by Richard Pryor's daughter, Rain. She is currently co-directing and co-producing Aubin Pictures' Amor Puro y Duro: Love Hard and Pure.
A natural born story teller, Daresha has produced television for WE, AMC, OXYGEN, E!, BRAVO, and FUSE among many others. As comfortable in front of as behind the camera, she started acting in junior high and went on to study the art at Sarah Lawrence College, HB Studios, and the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. She has acted in numerous short films and TV programs and has served as a reporter, correspondent, and host of numerous film, fashion, and music programs.
Her love of music goes back to numerous childhood musical theater productions. Daresha has also performed with and recorded an album with Chilum, a popular Hawaii based reggae band, was a member of the LA based Angel City Chorale, and was the lead singer in a rock and R&B cover band called Reciprocity.
Stephanie Wang-Breal, Consulting Producer: Dispatches from Cleveland
Stephanie Wang-Breal has been producing and directing films and commercials for the past 13 years. She directed the award-winning feature length documentary, Wo Ai Ni Mommy (I Love You, Mommy). The film was nominated for an Emmy®, and was the recipient of three Grand Jury Best Documentary Awards at the AFI/ Discovery Silverdocs Film Festival, the Asian American International Film Festival and the San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival, as well as a 2011 CINE special Jury Award. The film had its national television broadcast in 2010 on the award winning PBS series POV. Stephanie’s second feature-length documentary, Tough Love, premiered at the Full Frame Documentary Film Festival in April 2014 and premiered on PBS POV in July 2015. Stephanie has also directed pieces for Verifone, Tiffany’s, Apple, Goldman Sachs, UNICEF, CNN, MTV Networks. Stephanie currently sits on the board of the New York Women's Foundation and resides in Brooklyn with her husband, son & daughter.
Tanya Selvaratnam, Producer: Born to Fly & What's on Your Plate?, Production Consultant for Chavela
Born in Sri Lanka and raised in Long Beach, CA, Tanya Selvaratnam is a writer, producer, actor, and activist. As a producer, Selvaratnam’s recent projects include artist Mickalene Thomas’s Happy Birthday to a Beautiful Woman (forthcoming on HBO); Chiara Clemente’s Beginnings (Sundance Channel, Webby Award); and the Rockefeller Foundation-funded MADE HERE. Currently in development are a documentary by Chiara Clemente about the artist Alex Katz and a documentary by Albert Maysles and Shola Lynch about civil rights activist Myrlie Evers-Williams. Past film productions include Catherine Gund’s What’s On Your Plate? (Discovery Channel’s Planet Green); Chiara Clemente’s Our City Dreams (Sundance Channel); and Jed Weintrob’s The F Word(Independent Film Channel).
As an activist, Selvaratnam has worked for the World Health Organization, Ms. Foundation, and NGO Forum on Women; served on the boards of the Third Wave Foundation, Groundswell Community Mural Project, and The Wooster Group; and organized tsunami relief and book drive benefits for Sri Lanka. She received her graduate and undergraduate degrees in Chinese language and history from Harvard University. Her book, THE BIG LIE: Motherhood, Feminism, and the Reality of the Biological Clock released by from Prometheus Books in January 2014, distributed by Random House. www.tanyaturnsup.com
Carla Gutierrez, Editor: Chavela
Based in New York City, Carla Gutierrez edited the Oscar nominated film La Corona for HBO and the Emmy nominated documentary Reportero, which broadcast on POV. Carla also edited Kingdom of Shadows which premiered at SXSW, opened theatrically in Mexico, and it is slated to broadcast on POV in 2016. Her latest work, When Two Worlds Collide premiered at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival where it won the World Documentary Special Jury Award for Debut Feature. Carla’s work has screened at Sundance, IDFA, SXSW, Full Frame, AFI, Los Angeles Film Festival, HotDocs, Ambulante, among other festivals. Her films have broadcast on HBO, BBC’s Storyville, POV, Independent Lens, the Sundance Chanel, and the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. She has been a creative adviser for the Sundance Edit Lab, and a mentor for Firelight Producers’ Lab. Carla received a Masters in Documentary Film from Stanford University.
Hajer Salem, Assistant Editor: Chavela & Dispatches from Cleveland
Hajer Salem graduated with degrees in both Sociology and Biology from Lousiana State University. She forwent graduate studies in medicine to pursue a career in storytelling. Post-graduation, Hajer spent time traveling throughout American, Europe, and North Africa. She also spent two years working with at-risk girls through Americorps and Girls, Inc. As an editor, she as worked for Free Press Houston, Complex, Group Theory, and BBDO.
Laura Tatham, Associate Producer: Chavela & Dispatches from Cleveland
Laura Tatham hails from the world of book publishing, having spent five years working in both the corporate (Simon & Schuster) and non-profit (Feminist Press) sector. In that time, she worked on multiple New York Times bestsellers, as well as Lambda Literary and Pulitzer Prize–winning works. She has experience in marketing, publishing, and both film and book production. She has a background in literature, having earned a Master’s degree in American Literature from Drew University in 2009.
Laura is currently associate producing Aubin's Amor Puro y Duro and Dispatches from Cleveland.
Laura resides in Jersey City with her loving partner and cat. She is ecstatic to be a part of such an incredible team.
Laura Pilloni, Office and Projects Manager, Associate Producer for Chavela & Dispatches from Cleveland
Laura Pilloni has been working on feature-length and short form documentary and narrative film projects such as Front Cover (2015) and Kingdom of Shadows (2015) since 2013. Most recently she was an associate producer for the upcoming women and human rights documentary, Home Truth. Keeping in line with her work on these impactful films, she was very excited to become part of such an innovative and socially conscious production company when she joined the Aubin Pictures team. She is currently the post-production associate producer of two of Aubin Pictures' upcoming documentary projects, Chavela and Dispatches from Cleveland.
Laura graduated summa cum laude from the City College of New York (CCNY) where she received a BFA in Film and Video Production. She worked as a tutor and administrative assistant at the CNNY Writing Center for four years. She was also a mentor and videographer at Hofstra University's Documenting Diversity program. In her spare time, Laura enjoys working as an assistant director on short films, reading, and watching films.
Ri Lindegren, Assistant to the Director
Ri Lindegren is a dance artist, videographer, and media aficionado hailing from the the emerald coast of North Florida. Ri graduated more than a few years ago from New College of Florida, the honors college of Florida, with a degree in Anthropology, International Studies, and Gender Studies. In the administrative and technology worlds, Ri has worked for numerous organizations including Hunter College, Americorps, Gibney Dance Center, The Yard, Urban Bush Women, BODYART Dance Company, Sarasota Contemporary Dance Company, and MADRE, Inc.
Ri has frequent wanderlust and can often be found traveling up and down the east coast but has happily called New York City home for the past three years. When not in transit, Ri collaborates with numerous multimedia and dance artists and supports social justice and community building endeavors.
Ratha Ali, Office & Production Assistant
Ratha Ali is a Sophomore year at Brooklyn College studying Psychology and is hoping to become a professor specializing in Behavioral and Social Psychology. Ratha is fluent in both Arabic and English and is passionate about how the Media portrays Muslims in American society, partly because she is fascinated by how the brain works and how humans function.
The youngest of seven children, Ratha was born and raised in Brooklyn and attended school in Yemen for three years. In high school she made a short film on the crisis in Egypt and is excited to be working behind-the-scenes with the Aubin team providing office support on upcoming documentary projects.
Katherine Fana, Production Assistant
Katherine Fana graduated from the City College of New York with a BFA in Film and Video Production. As a student, she coordinated the Reel City Festival for classes 2013 through 2016, volunteered at the Tribeca Film Festival, Winter Awards Festival, and Dominican Film Festival, and got the opportunity to intern for Showtime Networks Inc and IKA Collectiv. She was also the president of the student film organization, S.A.M.E TV, an won the “Best Fiction Film” award in her graduating class for her thesis fil, The Things We Don’t Talk About. She's honored to intern for Aubin Pictures while learning about the imperative work behind documentaries that shape how people view the world and think about the issues around them.
Paola Ossa, Production Assistant
Paola Ossa is a sophomore at the Film Institute at Montclair State University with a BFA degree in Filmmaking. Born in Colombia and raised in New Jersey, Paola worked in digital marketing with Sonar Projects and interned at the Communication Arts Science Training (CAST) program in high school. For Paola, the appeal of documentaries is that they connect audiences to a real story, emboldening new perspectives and cultural awareness unlike any other genre. In her free time she enjoys hiking, traveling, editing films, and creating dope videos for DJs. Paola is currently working on her 3rd short film.