Carolyn Connerat produced commercials, corporate films, and live television events in Austin, Dallas, New York, and Boston after graduating from UT Austin. She worked in the satellite television industry distributing syndicated programs and live broadcasts for network and cable programmers. In 2005 she returned to The University of Texas at Austin and became Executive Director overseeing University Marketing and Creative Services. Her team received many industry awards and in 2012 she was nominated for a Lone Star Emmy as producer of “The Campaign for Texas” video. In 2013 she became Associate Vice Provost for Student Success and continues to produce videos for the University.
Louis Black co-founded The Austin Chronicle, where he is editor, and South by Southwest, where he is a director, and was a founding board member of the Austin Film Society. He has written extensively on film, music, and politics. Executive producer of Be Here to Love Me, A Film About Townes Van Zandt, he was a producer on the Peabody Award winning The Order of Myths. Having produced documentaries and reissues of classic Texas films (Eagle Penell’s The Whole Shootin’ Match and Tobe Hooper’s Eggshells). In 2015 he founded Production For Use, an independent film consultation company. Black is currently working on a number of documentary and narrative films as well as more reissues of classic Texas independent films.
Tom Huckabee is an award-winning filmmaker with over 35 years experience in film and TV. Starting with his first feature “Taking Tiger Mountain” in 1983, he has been a writer, director, producer, script analyst, quality-control supervisor, development executive, film festival director, and screenwriting instructor. From 1998 to 2001 he was vice president of Bill Paxton’s American Entertainment, where he oversaw the development of projects with Disney, Universal, Sony, HBO, and Lion’s Gate, resulting in “Traveller,” “The Greatest Game Ever Played,” and “Frailty.” In 2010 he wrote and directed “Carried Away,” which won the Best Narrative Feature award at the Oxford Mississippi Film Festival. He was the producer of Martini Ranch’s “Reach,” directed by James Cameron, the story editor of syndicated comedy series “Ghostbreakers,” the founding artistic director of the Lone Star International Film Festival, and co-producer of “The Starck Club.” Currently, he teaches screenwriting at Fort Worth Writer’s Bootcamp and serves as artistic director of Wildcatter Exchange, a literary festival.
Neil Ruttenberg is a graduate of the University of Texas with degrees in both the biological sciences and film. Before immersing himself into the film world, he was a prime mover in the Austin Punk scene as a musician in two seminal bands and a punk rock radio personality named Reverend Neil X. With a mere $500 dollars left over from his Bar Mitzvah, he wrote, produced and directed his horror movie Mask of Sarnath. After his movie was nominated for a Student Academy Award, Neil Ruttenberg moved to Los Angeles to work as a screenwriter. He began his career writing sword and sandal epics for Roger Corman before moving onto the majors. Neil Ruttenberg has sold screenplays to almost all of the film studios including Universal, Disney and Paramount. He has worked for directors like Joe Dante and collaborated with Marvel Comic's maestro Stan Lee on early drafts of Spiderman and Ant-Man.
Lorrie Oshatz is an Emmy nominated sound editor, short film director and Artistic Director of Flights of Fantasy Story Theatre. Her award winning films Leonardo, Jr., Garden of Delights, Pie in the Sky and Cattle Call have had screenings at Filmex, Women in the Director’s Chair, The House of Humor and Satire, The Collective for Living Cinema, The Southwest Alternate Media Project and Independent Eye on PBS. While working in the film industry she also had three kids and directed and produced four plays in Los Angeles. In 1995, Lorrie founded the touring company Flights of Fantasy Story Theatre which provides opportunities for children and adults to experience world-class theatre in their own communities. With support from The LA County Arts Commission, the LA Department of Cultural Affairs and The Weingart Foundation, 2015, will mark the 20th anniversary of Flights of Fantasy bringing inspiring performances and workshops to people throughout southern California. Lorrie is currently in pre-production on a short film entitled The Painting.
Paul Cullum is an award-winning journalist living in Los Angeles who has written for the L.A. Weekly, the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Hollywood Reporter, Variety, Filmmaker, Salon, Daily Beast, Huffington Post, the L.A. Review of Books and Texas Monthly, among many others. He was the Managing Editor for Film Threat Magazine and a columnist for Arthur, and was anthologized in The Best American Sports Writing of 2007. His songs have been recorded by the Golden Palominos (featuring Jack Bruce), the Wild Seeds, Kris McKay and have appeared in several films. He co-wrote the feature film Taking Tiger Mountain with Tom Huckabee, William Burroughs and others, which was recently screened at the Anthology Film Archives in honor of the centenary of Burroughs’ birth. He was in pre-production on the feature film Forward Lateral with Brian Hansen at the time of his death.
Photographer Will Van Overbeek was a student at UT when he met Garry Winogrand and Russel Lee. That set him on his present course. In the late 1970s he posed as "agent" for punk photographer Dana Somoza. His Magazine work includes, Texas Monthly, the Smithsonian, Esquire and National Geographic Traveler. Editorial work led to advertising assignments for such clients as, Adidas, ESPN, McDonald's and Microsoft. Will's work has been honored by publication in American Photography, Graphis and Communication Arts. His personal project "24 Summers at Barton Springs" was shown at the Austin Museum of Art in 2007. He is currently a contributing photographer at Texas Highways Magazine and accepts freelance assignments.
After completing her MA in Film from UT, Austin, Nina Nichols Austin moved to Dallas to pursue an acting career on the “Third Coast”. It was not a surprise to discover that bank commercials and industrial films were a poor substitute for the exciting film ventures she had enjoyed in Austin. After taking a part time job in a notable Dallas bridal salon, Austin discovered a new venue fraught with the drama and excitement. In 1986, after years committed to achieving the equivalent of a PHD in “Weddings”, Austin launch a here to for unheard of career as a Bridal Consultant! Frequently quoted in important national publications such as InStyle, Town and Country, Martha Stewart Living and Elegant Bride as well as the world class New York Times, Nina’s wedding expertise was sought after as the final word. Her talents were brought to the attention of Academy Award winning director, Robert Altman, who retained her as a consultant for “Dr. T and the Woman” starring Richard Gere. After a day on the set, Mr. Altman asked Nina to play herself in the film. In 2010, she returned to her hometown of Denton, Texas to care for her mother. In the past year she has retired from her consulting career as the demands of her mother’s health become more consuming. She is currently launching a new venture in which the multi-layered skills carefully honed over a thirty year career will be focused on the needs of the elderly. In addition she is serving on the advisory board for Scrap Denton, a creative re-use retail and educational project and is involved in a number of political endeavors including Frack Free Denton!
Kay Sloan is a novelist, poet and cultural historian. Her current fiction, “Give Me You,” won the Faulkner Pirates Alley Novella Award in 2014. Kay’s first novel, “Worry Beads,” won the Ohioana Book Award. Her next novel, “The Patron Saint of Red Chevys,” was selected for a Barnes and Noble “Discover Great New Writers” designation and also won nomination for an Alex Award and the Mississippi Arts and Letters Award. Twice a recipient of an Ohio Arts Council grant for fiction, Kay was Writer-in-Residence at Provincetown’s Fine Arts Work Center in 2011, where she began her third novel, “Give Me You.” Kay’s first historical book, “Looking Far North: The Harriman Expedition to Alaska 1899″ (co-authored with the Pulitzer Prize-winning historian William H. Goetzmann) became the basis for the PBS documentary “The Harriman Expedition Re-Traced,” which re-creates that dramatic voyage. Her documentary, “Suffragettes in the Silent Cinema,” is distributed by Women Make Movies. Its footage of silent film comedies and melodramas animate the issues discussed in her book, “The Loud Silents: Origins of the Social Problem Film.” Her current historical project, “We Were Not All Bigots,” is a cultural history on the contributions of white Mississippians to the Civil Rights Movement. She has recently been awarded the Rabbi Nussbaum Award for Civil Justice from Millsaps College in Mississippi. Kay teaches creative writing and literature at Miami University of Ohio.
D. N. Rodowick is Glen A. Lloyd Distinguished Service Professor at the University of Chicago, and the author of seven books including most recently, Philosophy's Artful Conversation (Harvard University Press, 2015). Rodowick is also a curator, and an award-winning experimental filmmaker and video artist. With Victor Burgin, he was recently awarded a Mellon Collaborative Fellowship at the Richard and Mary L. Gray Center for Arts and Inquiry, University of Chicago, to produce a new video work, Overlay. A selection of recent video work can be viewed at https://vimeo.com/dnrodowick/.