Gabrielle Hanna will step down in July as executive director of the Provincetown Film Society after 10 years in the post due to personal reasons.
A search committee is being set up to find a replacement for the popular executive who transformed the scope and reputation of the Cape Cod-based Provincetown International Film Festival and transformed the Society into a year-round event programmer.
Hanna raised the Society’s annual budget from under $300,000 to more than $1m and spearheaded a three-year capital campaign to the buy and renovate Waters Edge Cinema.
Further fundraising efforts have resulted in the anticipated autumn launch of the Provincetown Film Institute.
“It has been a thrilling challenge growing the festival and the Society, and I am deeply grateful to the incredible staff and board of PFS,” said Hanna. “I am proud of the partnerships we have built with both local and national organisations, and that the Society is poised to take the next leaps into the future.”
“Gabby Hanna has been the heart and soul of the film festival and the film society for ten years,” said Society board president Evan T Lawson. “Her vision and leadership made the film society into a vital and durable part of the arts on the Outer Cape. She will be missed and always remembered.”
“It’s difficult to consider a PIFF without Gabby at the helm, but it is impossible to imagine where the festival might be today without her decade of exceptional leadership,” said PIFF artistic director Connie White.
“Among her many accomplishments, Gabby assembled and fostered a talented and committed staff, and cultivated and maintained great rapport with our family of local and national sponsors, who return year after year. While we wish Gabby the very best in her future personal and professional endeavors, there will always be a primary place for her in the heart of the festival.”
Writer-director and PFS advisory board member John Waters added: “Gabby Hanna was a fearless executive director whose humour, hard work and relentless pursuit of financing, good programming and solving the everyday problems of running a film festival will be forever appreciated. The Waters Edge Cinema should actually be named after her since it was her baby right from the beginning.”