PANEL #2 – “WOMEN IN FILM AND TELEVISION – The State of the Art”

Saturday, November 4th at 10:30-11:30am

“WOMEN IN FILM AND TELEVISION – The state of the art” – Join us Saturday morning for breakfast faire generously contributed by SPROUTS and a provocative panel addressing the role that women play in today’s film/television and creative industries. We will be joined by female filmmakers, producers, festival directors, writers, directors and actors who are all having an impact in the Kansas City community and beyond. Come and be inspired as our panelists answer questions about what has and hasn’t worked for them in looking to accomplish their dreams, challenges they face and work to overcome, trends and movements they’ve picked up on in the world of media and entertainment, and share some of their own anecdotal experiences with being creators in a climate where content is king and coming at us from more angles than ever before. Panelists to include:


  Savannah Rogers
Savannah Rodgers is an award-winning director, writer, and producer. As a filmmaker, she has been recognized for her achievements with accolades from the independent film circuit, including the Next Gen Award from the Twister Alley Film Festival. In addition to moviemaking, Savannah is a freelance writer and Programmer for the Slamdance Film Festival.



  Lolo Loren
Lolo has been writing, filming and editing since she was twelve. She has shot and edited over 70 short films and has worked behind the scenes on 9 feature films, five of which were produced by the production company she operates with filmmaker Patrick Poe, IX Productions.


  Michelle Davidson
Michelle is a four-time regional Emmy Award-winning writer, producer, host and actor. On the small screen, Michelle hosts a daily entertainment show “Kansas City Live” on KSHB (NBC), where she interviews celebrities like Jennifer Lopez, Jason Bateman, Jason Sudekis, Sally Field and Kate Hudson. Drawing from her experience in broadcast journalism, she plays a newscaster in Season 5 of the acclaimed NETFLIX series House of Cards, a TV host in the AMC TV show Halt & Catch Fire and a reporter in the STARZ series Boss, opposite Kelsey Grammer. Michelle co-wrote the feature film Arbor Demon with Director Patrick Rea, starring Fiona Dourif and Jake Busey. Michelle was honored by Kansas City Women in Film & TV with the 2017 KCWIFT Legacy Award for her contribution to the film community.



  Jill Gevargizian
Jill “Sixx” Gevargizian is a director and producer from Kansas City, Missouri. Much like the protagonist in her new film The Stylist (2016), she has been a hairstylist for over 10 years. As a child, Gevargizian picked up her dad’s camcorder, and the rest is history! In 2012, she decided to bring independent horror films to her hometown by creating a monthly showcase called Slaughter Movie House – that she is still running today. Gevargizian has worked on many films outside of her own. The Stylist (2016), starring Najarra Townsend (Contracted), sliced through the competition, screening at the best genre film festivals across the globe and winning 17 awards, including the Jury Award at Etheria Film Night and Best Performance in a Short (Najarra Townsend) at Fantastic Fest and Monster Fest.


  Erin Zimmerman
Erin Zimmerman is the current President of Kansas City Women in Film and Television, following 3 years as Secretary and general Board Member. Her number one mission as President is to get more people DOING to make their dreams happen, while providing opportunities and cheering people on (especially those that are grossly underrepresented in the film and TV industries). In addition to her volunteer work with KCWIFT, she is THE Visibility Guide with her company, Elephant Social, as well as Co-Owner, photographer, and filmmaker alongside her twin sister, Meredith, with their company: DoubleTake Productions


  Alexis Del Cid
Alexis Del Cid joined KCTV5 in August 2012. She is a host for Better Kansas City.
A Midwest girl at heart, She grew up in Chicago, spent her summers on a water ski team in the north woods of Wisconsin and graduated from the University of Iowa. An award-winning reporter, Alexis got her start in Chicago at WMAQ Radio. From there she made the transition to television, working as a reporter and anchor at KPLC in Lake Charles, LA; WCIA in Champaign, IL; KOB in Albuquerque, NM and KOIN in Portland, OR.


Barbie Banks is the director of the Citizen Jane Film Festival in Columbia Missouri. Originally from Pevely, Missouri, Banks moved to Columbia in 2005 after completing her undergraduate degree in social science education at William Woods University in Fulton. She worked as a residence hall coordinator at MU, and in 2007, she began her master’s degree in social work in policy, planning and administration at the university. In 2010, she began working at Columbia


  Shan Jabara
Shan has spent her working life in the fields of international education and the arts – both in the U.S. and abroad. Upon returning to Wichita, she joined the first Tallgrass programming committee in 2003 and has been with Tallgrass ever since in various leadership positions in programming. Currently, as Director of Acquisitions, Shan’s focus is on researching, reviewing and booking films for the annual festival and year-round screenings. As Director of Community Engagement, she enjoys coordinating Tallgrass’ Kansas state Road Show and partnering with a variety of local nonprofit organizations in conjunction with particular films and events.


  Gretchen Mitchell
Gretchen Mitchell is the Co-Director of Programming for the Tallgrass Film Festival. She organizes the film submission and review site databases, curates the short film programs, coordinates the awards operations and leads the Emerging Programmer Apprenticeship program for high school students. In her other life, Gretchen works as a Technical Writer and Marketing Coordinator for Professional Engineering Consultants. She began volunteering at Festival in 2005, as a hospitality coordinator and has a reputation for mixing up her famous punch, making late night runs for tacos and early morning trips to the airport for visiting filmmakers.