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A Welcome Message from Cynthia López, Commissioner of the Mayor's Office of Media and Entertainment

To learn more about Commissioner Cynthia López, click here.

When Mayor Bill de Blasio called upon me to join his administration as commissioner of the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment, I saw it as an opportunity to continue the work I’ve been committed to throughout the course of my career – using media and the language of film to serve the public and support the wider landscape of filmmaking in New York City.

My main goal as commissioner is to ensure that New York City is the creative capital of the world. Throughout my career, I have seen firsthand the production process in many other countries, and each time I come home, one thing is perfectly clear – there is no other place in the world that has what New York City has to offer. We welcome every kind of production, from a big summer blockbuster to an independent documentary, and the staff at the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment is committed and here to assist the industry in whatever way possible.

Looking forward, I think it’s important to work toward diversifying the pool of production talent at all levels in New York City. My ability to forge strategic partnerships among corporate and public interest media has been a signature of my work, and as commissioner, I will work with the industry and independent producers and develop partnerships with academic institutions, local incubators and media organizations to showcase the amazing talent and legacy of filmmaking in New York City.

I grew up in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, so as a native New Yorker, I love seeing New York City depicted on screen but understand the inconveniences that sometimes occur when productions are filming on your block. We will continue to look at ways to balance the community’s needs with the logistics of on location filming. We want to open the lines of communication and emphasize the important role this industry plays in the local economy, employing New Yorkers and supporting local businesses. Together, we can maintain New York City’s position as a thriving center for content creation.

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About Commissioner López

Cynthia López is the Commissioner of the New York City Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment. López joined the City of New York from American Documentary | POV, where she had worked since 2000. Previously, she served as executive vice president and co-executive producer of the award-winning POV (Point of View) documentary series, where she was responsible for all aspects of the organization’s development, working with key stakeholders in education, public policy and community development. Her ability to forge strategic partnerships among corporate and public interest media has been a signature of her work.

During López’s tenure, POV earned numerous coveted awards. In 2013 alone, it was one of only 13 nonprofit organizations worldwide to receive a $1 million MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions. Among its other honors are a Special News & Documentary Emmy Award for Excellence in Television Documentary Filmmaking, two IDA Awards for Best Continuing Series, 32 additional Emmy Awards, 17 George Foster Peabody Awards, 12 duPont-Columbia Broadcast Journalism Awards, three Academy Awards®, the Prix Italia and the Webby. López is the recipient of nine News & Documentary Emmy Awards.

Prior to joining POV, she worked as advocacy director for Libraries for the Future and acting executive director of the Deep Dish Satellite TV Network. She also served as the executive producer of Hunter College’s Satellite TV Network, which included university, municipal and public access channels that distributed public interest programming.

López has presided on many prestigious juries including: Tribeca Film Institutes Latin American Media Fund; Jerome Foundation Film & Video Panel Jury; Sundance Documentary Fund Committee; Paley Center Doc Challenge Pitch Panel; HotDocs International Film Festival, Blue Ice Lab; Australia International Documentary Conference F4 Jury; Docs Barcelona; MediMed and Good Pitch. López is the founding chairperson of the board of directors of the National Association of Latino Independent Producers (NALIP). She currently serves on the Board of Trustees for the Paley Center, NYC & Company, Museum of the Moving Image, Latino Public Broadcasting, and the Tribeca Film Institute Latin America Fund Advisory Board. The Imagen Foundation cited López as one of the top 20 most influential Latinos in entertainment, and in 2014, Variety named her one of Gotham’s top 50 New York Entertainment Elite.

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