Producer and former CBS Films president Amy Baer has been elected board president of Women In Film (WIF) starting on June 15 after the organisation’s annual fundraiser the Women In Film Crystal and Lucy Awards Gala.
WIF has also announced new board members and officers: Endeavor partner Esther Chang, attorney Bonnie Eskenazi, ABC Comedy senior vice-president Jamila Hunter, Hulu vice-president and head of corporate communications Guade Paez, and wealth manager Stasia Washington.
Outgoing president Cathy Schulman will remain on the board and assumes a new role as chair of an advisory council.
“Throughout my eight-year tenure as board president, I’ve watched Women In Film grow into an influential thought leader operating in the intersection between gender and the screen industries,” Schulman said.
“We are in a tipping point moment, where sustainable gender equality can be achieved, and I am thrilled to turn the reins over to my long-time colleague and collaborator, Amy Baer. Amy is a proven industry leader and entrepreneur whose unique experience spans major studios, independent financiers, and producing.
“I look forward to working with Amy, this extraordinary new group of board members, and the staff at Women In Film to transform media culture behind the camera and on screen.”
“I am honoured by my fellow board members who elected me to this position,” Baer said. “It’s a momentous time for women – both in our industry and in our culture – and I am excited to lead this organisation as we continue to push for and shape the conversation around parity for women across the screen industries.
“Cathy has done an extraordinary job as WIF board president; I hope that my tenure is as meaningful and successful as hers has been. She leaves tremendous shoes to fill, and we still have work to do.”
“In the eight years that Cathy Schulman served as board president, she was responsible for moving the organization deeper into advocacy work and bringing greater national and international media attention to the need for parity in the workplace, on screen and behind the camera,” WIF executive director Kirsten Schaffer said.
Under Schulman’s leadership WIF partnered with the Sundance Institute and USC Annenberg Inclusion Initiative, conducting research to better understand, and work to overcome the systemic barriers to success faced by women in the entertainment industry. That research led to ReFrame, a research based action plan to champion gender parity in the media industry.
Baer launched Gidden Media in 2017 and prior to that was president and CEO of CBS Films after a 17-year senior executive stint at Sony, where she oversaw My Best Friend’s Wedding, Something’s Gotta Give, and Adaptation, among others. Her producer credits include Toronto 2017 world premiere Mary Shelley, and Last Vegas.