Industry Star of the Month

Lisa Lucas, Tribeca Film Institute

January 3, 2011 - As the director of education for the Tribeca Film Institute, Lisa Lucas is able to bring media arts education to school children throughout the City.

Growing up, Lucas’ parents introduced her to culture and took her to see plays. The question that faced Lucas when she started with Tribeca was how to bring that kind of access to over a million public school children. “We wanted to see how we could expand the youth programs with the resources available in the City,” she said.

First they created Film Fellows, which gives young filmmakers the chance to experience the Tribeca Film Festival and learn about the breadth of employment in the film industry. In the summer months, the Tribeca Film Institute runs the filmmaking component of the Summer Arts Institute, in conjunction with the Department of Education. This program gives students in grades 8-12 the opportunity to learn about filming from pre to post production. When they finish, they have a portfolio of work that gives them an edge in the competition to get into college. This past spring, five students who took part in Tribeca’s youth programs in previous years graduated from the Tisch School of the Arts at NYU.

Part of what Lucas has tried to accomplish during her tenure at the Tribeca Film Institute is bringing public school students access to films made by people of color. Through the Tribeca Youth Screening Series, young people are exposed to cinema and can develop an interest in independent film. Last year, 4000 students took part in the program. In recent weeks, 230 students went to a screening of Spike Lee’s film If God Is Willing and Da Creek Don’t Rise. For some, explained Lucas, it was their first time seeing a Spike Lee film.

For middle school students, the Institute runs Tribeca Teaches, which brings teaching artists into the classrooms and gets students to creatively think about important topics and create their own documentary films based in those subjects. At the festival, the projects are screened and the young filmmakers get to walk the red carpet.

Lucas was also instrumental in the creation of the Blueprint for Teaching and Learning in the Arts: The Moving Image, a curriculum guide for the study of film, TV and animation from early elementary school through high school graduation. The Blueprint was a collaboration between the Department of Education, the Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting and the Tribeca Film Institute, and Lucas’ work on the project continues through professional development days with teachers who are using the curriculum.

Lucas is proud of the work she and her team have done, especially in collaborating with various organizations throughout the City. “Arts education gives kids a sense of self esteem,” said Lucas.

“My grandmother was an educator in the Bronx at the very school where Tribeca Teaches started out,” she said. “I’m right back to where I started.”

Industry Star


Margarita Acevedo, Mayor's Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting
John Battista, Mayor's Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting
Tom Reidy, Madison Square Park
Steven Holtzman, Canal Creatures Productions

2012
Jennifer Lenihan, Office of Film, Theatre and Broadcasting
Lynne Meadow, Manhattan Theatre Club
Thomas O'Donnell, Local 817
Katy Finch, Brooklyn Workforce Innovations
Meredith Conti, Grand Central Terminal


2011
Gino Lucci, Picture Cars East
Habibah Ali-Love, OFTB
McCord Fitzsimmons, Former OFTB Intern
Lis Pearson, New York Public Library
Veronica Miles, EcoSet
Lisa Rubin, Hudson River Park Trust
Mari Jo Winkler, PGA Green
Michael Super, Coney Island, Parks and Recreational Manager
Caroline Stephenson, NYC Economic Development Corporation
Lisa Lucas, Tribeca Film Institute


2010
Harriet Taub, Material for the Arts
David Moy, OFTB
Fred Cerullo, Grand Central Partnership
Marge Feinberg, DOE
Nate Grove, Marinas
Frank Gribbon, FDNY
Jeffrey Sangrund, Brooklyn Bridge Park
Javonne Parker, Staten Island Ferry
Justin Green, Build It Green! NYC
Tom Ross, "Law & Order: Criminal Intent"
Eric Peterson, Randall's Island
Connie Fitzgerald, Department of Environmental Protection


2009
Joey Violante, Technicolor
Stephanie Argamaso, OFTB
Vito Turso, DSNY
Elizabeth Rapuano, Governor's Island
Estelle Cooper, Flushing Meadows Corona Park
Alvah Holmes, Former MOFTB Intern
Dana Kuznetzkoff, Line Producer
Eva Radke, Film Biz Recycling
Karen Meyerhoff, Guggenheim
Meredith Rothstein, Roseland Ballroom
Charlotte St. Martin, The Broadway League


2008
The Artists Company
Celina Sze, OFTB
Sharon Jensen, The Alliance for Inclusion in the Arts
Terence Gray, New York Television Festival
Sam Levy, Summer Play Festival
Wes French, General Services Administration
Tom Maiorano, Brooklyn Navy Yard
Joan Cooney, South Street Seaport
Jeannine Marotta, Staten Island Economic Development Corporation
Brooke Smy, Tishman Speyer
Elliott Kerman, Tax Credit Accountant


2007
Matthew Kania, Assistant Location Manager
Lieutenant Joe Lassen, Movie/TV Unit
In Memoriam - Nancy Littlefield
Ivory Henderson-Robb, Department of Transportation
Jack Powers, New York City Economic Development Corporation
Robin Forst, Lower Manhattan Construction Command Center
Kitty Preston, CUNY Locations
Liz Carollo, Greenmarket
Donna Masly, Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation
Sean Jones, New York City Department of Corrections
Sheila Greene, NYCHA


2006
Ralph Musolino, Parks and Recreation
Rick Cotton, NBC Universal
Joe Fontao, Location Manager
Gretchen McGowan, HDNet Films/Open City Films
Tim Tompkins, Times Square Alliance
Erika Feldman, Theatre Row
Vin Lenza, Staten Island Development Corporation
Tristan Assent, "Made in NY" PA
Denise Motta, New York City Economic Development Corporation
Terry Lawler, New York Women in Film and Television
Monty Ross, 40 Acres and a Mule


2005
Pat White, Local 764
Michelle Byrd, Independent Feature Project
Matt Miller, AICP
Kyle McCarthy, MTA Metro-North
Jeannette Pinero, Department of Correction
Bambi Brook, Dawn Animal Agency
Andy Nagy, NYCHA
Juan Rosario, HPD
James J. Claffey, Jr., IATSE Local One
Mac Brown, Producer
Cheryl Hodge, VTU
Llewellyn Wells, Executive Producer
Lawrence Major, Parks and Recreation


2004
Ken Konfong, Economic Development Corporation
Whoopi Goldberg, Actress/Producer
Caroline Baron, FilmAid International
Thomas O'Donnell Sr., Local 817
Drew Jiritano, Special Effects Coordinator
Carla Rajj, Location Manager
Al Cerullo, Film Pilot
James Lauer, FDNY
Dan Mercado, Parks and Recreation
Rebecca Seale, DCAS
Alberteen Anderson, MTA
Joseph Ellis, NYPD
Peter Basich, DOT
Richie Silverman, NYPD