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2016 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Women in Film & Video Inc

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Arts Services, Film & Video, Media & Communications

Mission: Established in 1979, Women In Film & Video of Washington, DC (WIFV-DC) is a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing the professional development and achievement of women in film, television, video, multimedia and related disciplines. We work closely with industry agencies to promote opportunities for women in the industry; their achievements; and on-going professional development. There are currently 1,000+ members in the DC Chapter. We are also part of an international network of 40 chapters with more than 10,000 members worldwide.

Results: Member films have been screened at film festivals around the globe. 78 screenplays have been promoted in the Spotlight on Screenwriters catalogue. New creative teams come together to make independent work. Internal fundraising has resulted in the first call for applications to the WIFV Seed Fund for Documentary Filmmakers. Our members work for the most-respected media companies in the US and create a significant body of independent media every year.

Target demographics: screen-based mediamakers and their audiences

Direct beneficiaries per year: 400 students; 4 non-profits; 3,500 program attendees

Geographic areas served: Mid-Atlantic

Programs: 80+ professional development programs per year, including ScriptDC, Women of Vision Awards, Spotlight on Screenwriters, Image Makers, Kids World Film Festival, master classes, roundtables, and networking.

Community Stories

26 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Board Member

Rating: 4

I have been a WIFV member for 10 years before becoming a new, first-time anywhere board member. The Executive Director is AMAZING, the programs and initiatives are timely and spot on. Events are well attended, volunteers are fantastic.

This is a well-run organization that does the best it can with its money, and of course can use more to expand and do the things that people are asking. It's well worth it to become and remain a member, and worth it to donate!

Rebecca151

Board Member

Rating: 5

This organization recently received the Mayor's Arts Award for Excellence in Service to the Arts, and it's due to the strong sense of community that is maintained between members, the all-volunteer board, and Executive Director Melissa Houghton, who celebrated her 10th work anniversary this year. If you want to hone your artistic skills and connect locally in DC, or internationally with 10,000+ WIFTI members - this is the organization to join!

Board Member

Rating: 5

From helping a young person celebrate completing their first film project to having a seasoned veteran come share their expertise with members and friends, Women in Film and Video works to serve and celebrate everyone. One of my first tasks when moving to the DMV area was to join WIFV. I knew that the connections and opportunities would assist me learning about the local and regional industry. It has been wonderful return on the investment.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

Women in Film and Video is an organization committed to advancing female filmmakers. This occurs through connections, resources, and advocacy. WIFV offers invaluable mentorship in ever-changing and challenging business environment.

Board Member

Rating: 4

Whether new in town, a student, or a veteran media maker - WIFV has something to offer. I was all three of those when first introduced to WIFV through my film program! Quickly, I learned WIFV can provide almost instant connections to resources; it has vast networking, support, and mentoring opportunities; and it gives members a sense of community and belonging in the DC Metro area. WIFV offers tremendous support for indie doc filmmakers, through its Documentary Seed Fund, Fiscal Sponsorship Program, and general advocacy to get women's voices heard in the media that surrounds us. Its members and staff are inspiring and hard working women. Join them!

Board Member

Rating: 5

WIFV is a wonderful organization! I've been a member for more than 15 years and I'm consistently amazed at how interesting and insightful the programs are--I learn so much by attending WIFV functions and networking with members. A really great community!

Board Member

Rating: 4

I have been a member of Women In Film & Video for close to two years. The members and staff go out of their way to help you. Whether it is to find a new job, someone to read your script or a graphics person for your media project for kids, someone has a suggestion for you. WIFV believes if you succeed, they succeed. I have been on the board for other women's TV and radio and PR groups and this one is by far the most supportive. The job fair was incredible with the list of great companies. This is one group worth joining.

Board Member

Rating: 4

I joined the Board of WIFV in 2012 to give back to this wonderful community of media makers that has made such a difference in my own career in television. One of my favorite events each year is the Kids World Film Festival which gives students throughout the region the opportunity to develop their critical viewing skills while watching films from around the world. Some of our most accomplished members make classroom visits to talk about their work and prepare students for the event. Highlights of our most recent Festival included a special visit from a woman filmmaker from Oman and an animated film from Norway about a young girl who triumphs over neighborhood bullies. The KWFF is a very special event for students, educators and volunteers, and WIFV makes it possible.

Board Member

Rating: 5

This is an innovative and inspiring organization that always finds new ways to enhance their member's experience. There are so many opportunities for skills building, networking and building creative projects.

kmdismukes

Board Member

Rating: 5

Creating broadcast-quality, high-impact media is hard work. It can take years to complete a film, technology changes almost daily, and obtaining funding is almost insurmountably challenging. But if you’re a woman who wants to direct a feature film, write a TV series, or produce a documentary, your chances of success are greatly diminished.

Study after study shows there is still a profound lack of diversity among above-the-line decision makers (defined as directors, producers, writers, cinematographers, and editors). Research also shows how this deficit helps perpetuate the rampant, demeaning depiction of women and girls in mainstream media. Women and girls continue to lose confidence as a result of inequitable gender portrayals. Stories go untold. Social change driven by powerful documentary films is not generated. The richness of our culture is diminished.

Women in Film & Video of Washington, DC (WIFV) has been working since 1979 to turn disappointing statistics around and advocate for under-represented voices. Our operating philosophy is to be the change we want to see. We help women build skills and make key connections, and we help them access funding. I'm very proud to have been a member and volunteer since 2007 as well as a board member since 2012.

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

When I was considering a career move to media in 2007, Women in Film & Video-DC was one of the first resources I discovered, and everyone I encountered said WIFV was THE place to start and grow a media career. I started volunteering right away and have had the honor of being mentored by WIFV's Executive Director, Melissa Houghton, for the last six years. WIFV even helped me get my first position in the industry! Along the way, I have gotten to know and learn from many WIFV members. In 2012, I was elected to the WIFV board, and now I'm Vice President of Development! Needless to say, I have benefited personally and directly from Women in Film & Video, and I recommend the organization to anyone starting or transitioning into a media career.

yrarring

Board Member

Rating: 5

I've been an active member of WIFV for about 10 years. I've made great friends, business connections, and have found paid work through this great organization. If you're just starting out, looking to change careers, or are a seasoned media professional, WIFV is the place for you.

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

I joined WIFV not long after graduating from college. A nearly a decade later, I'm entering my fourth year on the board and have co-chaired numerous projects. WIFV has a way of supporting your professional and personal growth, while helping you gain the confidence you need to become a better leader and organizer. Membership in this organization is priceless.

Board Member

Rating: 5

I joined the board because it was time to give back - this is the premier professional development organization in DC for film and video. It is also a community. It is also a deep network, for everything from technical issues on a particular software to international strategic considerations. It runs programming from monthly round tables by professional interests to intensive weekend workshops, from resume review to job fairs, from seminars to screenings to happy hours to a fiscal sponsorship program and issue advocacy efforts. It is so good at connecting people with the resources they need to work and thrive as professionals that people continue their membership even when they leave DC.

Board Member

Rating: 5

WIFV is a key organization that promotes the work of women filmmakers while providing the tools and training to succeed both personally and professionally. With over 70 events a year, WIFV plays a key role in the community by bringing together speakers, sponsors and influential members of the community to share their expertise and educate others.

Board Member

Rating: 5

WIFV is an awesome organization for anyone looking to be more connected and educated within the media space.

Board Member

Rating: 5

When I first began exploring the area, I joined WIFV DC and was blown away with the quality of people I met. The work members are doing is not only passionate and personal, but also echoes the world class production community that resides in DC. There is such a diversity among members - producers, editors, writers, artists, filmmakers of all genres as well as those in the technical side of the biz. We even have members who just love film. Its been a tremendous resource for me and constant inspiration. There are numerous workshops and roundtables regularly, as well as a commitment to community involvement. Any member will find support and expertise available to them, and the warmth and hospitality of a real community. As a new board member, my experience was validated when I learned most members chose to run for the board because they simply wanted to give back to an organization that has given so much to them.

Board Member

Rating: 5

WIFV is an amazing resource for media makers in the DC area and beyond. I've lived in San Francisco and New York - both of which are amazing towns for media types, but I've never seen anything as robust of as the breadth and depth of programming and support that WIFV offers the filmmaking community. They are amazing resource for media makers at every level - from students and those just starting out their careers to business owners and those that have been in the business for decades. The fact that the "founding mothers" are still members and actively involved 35 years after the organization started is proof positive that WIFV is the real deal.

WIFV has something for everyone regardless of area of focus -- from narrative to documentary, from editing, to graphics, to writing and directing and outreach/distribution. They also understand new platforms and new media outlets.

WIFV also collaborates closely with other media organizations in the DC area, around the country and across the globe, so they really have their finger on the pulse of what's happening in the media landscape. Plus, their convening power is amazing.

WIFV is the 'must join' organization for anyone interested in media making.

Board Member

Rating: 5

The WIFV DC CHapter is an advocacy, training and information star in the DC Metro Media Industry! There are several events to network, our membership is large and quite diverse and the LISTSERVE is outstanding!

It has been a tremendous asset to my career and I am honored to serve as a board member.

randicreates

Board Member

Rating: 5

When I moved to the DC area a few years ago, I networked with a few organizations and found Women in Film an Video to the be most organized of the bunch. The mission statement is about professional networking and career development - and the organization follows its mission - but it is so much more. I have re-framed by professional outlook and career choices due in part, to the seminars I have attended.

As with most organizations - they are only as good as their people. WIFV is largely volunteer-led - and dedication of its members is top notch.
I have benefited enormously by my association with WIFV, and now in the process of "passing it on"

Previous Stories
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Volunteer

Rating: 5

WIFV DC provides me with opportunities to network and learn. From those opportunities I found employment, upped my knowledge base and made friends. WIFV - you ROCK!

Board Member

Rating: 5

I am now a Board Member of WIFV because, of all the organizations I have ever joined in my life, WIFV has really helped me transform. I wanted to transition into filmmaking for a very long time but did not know how. Because of their mission and nurturing atmosphere I can now call myself a filmmaker. We just conducted our annual ScriptDC filmmakers weekend which just keeps getting better and better. My personal mission is to make funding available to women filmmakers so that our stories are shared with the rest of the world. I started writing and producing because I was so tired of the way women were being represented in feature films and reality television. I really did not need to see another "unscripted" reality character throw something. I want to experience all of the layers women characters bring to story. I must say I have really enjoyed being a member of WIFV and hope to continue to help women as they have helped me.

1

Board Member

Rating: 5

When I was in the early stages of production on my independent documentary, the best decision I made was to get involved with WIFV. As anyone involved in independent production will attest, it can be lonesome out here! Fortunately the WIFV community has supported me every step of the way on my journey and without their tremendous professional and personal support I would not have completed this film.