TAGGART SIEGEL (Co-Founder of Collective Eye, Inc.)
Taggart Siegel has been directing award-winning documentaries and dramas for 25 years that reflect cultural diversity with absorbing style. From spiritual elders struggling to preserve traditions in alien environments to marginalized youth surviving hostile streets, the subjects of his films present vital perspectives rarely seen in mainstream media. Taggart's newest film, QUEEN OF THE SUN: What Are The Bees Telling Us?, winner of 11 International Film Festival Awards, takes us on a journey through the catastrophic disappearance of bees. Capturing the mysterious world of the beehive, this engaging and ultimately uplifting film weaves an unusual and dramatic story of the heartfelt struggles of beekeepers, scientists and philosophers from around the world. THE REAL DIRT ON FARMER JOHN won 31 International Film Festival awards and is currently being released theatrically around the world. Siegel's films bring compelling voices and visions to a global audience. Siegel is the co-founder of Collective Eye, Inc., a non-profit media organization based in San Francisco, California and Portland, Oregon.
JON BETZ (Director of Distribution & Acquisitions)
Jon Betz is an award-winning independent documentary filmmaker. He is the co-director of the feature documentary in production, SEED: The Untold Story. He is also the producer and editor for the multi-award winning QUEEN OF THE SUN: What Are The Bees Telling Us?, which was critically acclaimed during it's US theatrical release. His 2008 film, MEMORIZE YOU SAW IT, is an intimate documentary about his relationship as a foreigner working with former child soldiers in Eastern Uganda. Betz is a graduate from the Rhode Island School of Design and is the director of Collective Eye Films.
JAMES-MICHAEL BOYER (Assistant Director)
James-Michael Boyer is a graduate of the University of North Carolina Wilmington with a degree in Film, where he studied cinematography, non-linear editing, and the history of documentary filmmaking. Though much of James-Michael’s previous work has been in narrative film production, he now uses his eye for cinema as Assistant Director.
SYDNEY MELTZER (Marketing Manager)
Sydney graduated from Willamette University with a degree in Rhetoric & Media Studies and Sociology where she studied civic and visual communication with an emphasis on the relationship between language and society. During her undergraduate career, she briefly lived in Istanbul where she studied documentary filmmaking, cinematography and the sociology of communication. Using her background in rhetorical studies, she develops strategic marketing plans that reveal the educational value and narrative importance of documentary films. Sydney has created several short films focusing on feminism and dismantling social stigma. She plans to attend graduate school for documentary filmmaking.
ROBYN GOTTLIEB (Campaign Director)
Robyn helped coordinate outreach and promotions for the US theatrical release of SEED: The Untold Story. She created and runs the affiliate marketing program and distribution for SEED’s home entertainment release. Robyn is the Campaign Director for SEED’s youth educational outreach campaign. She holds Bachelor’s degrees in Environmental Studies and Political Science from Portland State University. Her background is in political organizing, and she continues to organize to create change for important causes and candidates.
CORRINE MATLAK (Community Screenings Coordinator)
Corrine is a charismatic chameleon of the independent film industry. After graduating Wagner College with a degree in Arts Administration, she has been variously involved in everything from production to festivals. She is passionate about ensuring a filmmaker’s art and mission is not just seen, but shared; she is thankful to pursue this in her role at Collective Eye Films. In her free time, Corrine enjoys headbanging at concerts, following the NBA, and exploring with her family.
LORETTA CALLAHAN (Accounting & Systems Support Consultant)
Loretta's career includes being a Mother, Grandmother, and serving over 35 years as a business consultant to over 150 organizations, many in the entertainment and film industry. She co-founded On Track Business Service in Portland, OR in 1993. She has been with Collective Eye since 2007. Loretta has used her extensive administrative and financial skills to help environmental groups and First Nations People protect the environment, wildlife and preserve indigenous languages, stories, songs and sacred sites. Now, in semi-retirement, Loretta’s passion is the mandolin and Irish music.
Board of Directors
CHRISTOPHER UPHAM (Director)
Christopher Upham is a writer-director and story consultant living in San Francisco who has worked in the film business since 1979. Sought after as a story consultant, his clients include: writers John O’Keefe (Shimmer, The Bronte Cycle), Lynn Hershman-Leeson (Conceiving Ada, Technolust) and Lewis Green (Never Talk to Strangers), and documentary directors Ellen Perry (THE FALL OF FUGIMORI) and Taggart Siegel (THE REAL DIRT ON FARMER JOHN). On Staff for the Squaw Valley Community of Writers Screenwriters program, Mr. Upham has taught screenwriting at San Francisco State University and documentary structure workshops. His current feature film projects include: GOOD MORNING AFGHANISTAN with British broadcaster Waseem Mahmoud; SECRET SOLDIER, in which a woman masquerades as a soldier in Vietnam; wine country comedy FOR THE LOVE OF ALICE; classical CAIRO PSALM with Lebanese director Hisham Bizri; and COOPERSTOWN with Sundance acclaimed director William Farley. Mr. Upham’s feature-length documentary about the long-term effects of combat, WAR WITHIN, won a prestigious Pacific Pioneer grant and is currently in postproduction. WAR WITHIN centers on Upham’s experiences as a medic and traveling back to Vietnam with four Army comrades.
SOPHIE CONSTANTINOU (Director and Cinemotographer)
Sophie’s work has earned international acclaim for tackling difficult topics with artistry and sensitivity. These range from an intensely personal exploration of the conflict in Cyprus (DIVIDED LOYALTIES which received a Golden Gate Award at the 2000 San Francisco International Film Festival) to LUNCH LOVE COMMUNITY, a collaboration between Citizen Film and co-director Helen De Michiel which has yielded a mosaic of sharable web-based short films that support the movement to change the way our children eat. In addition to her current work in new media, Constantinou continues to shoot high-profile documentaries for PBS and HBO as she has been doing for the past 15 years. Her many cinematography credits include KQED’s Emmy-Award Winning HOME FRONT, exploring the tension between economic redevelopment and cultural continuity in San Francisco’s Mission District; PBS/POV’s award-winning MAQUILAPOLIS about factory workers and their lives on the US-Mexico border; and HBO’s UNCHAINED MEMORIES which tells the stories of former slaves using testimony from WPA archives. She is currently the cinematographer for REGARDING SUSAN SONTAG, another upcoming HBO feature documentary, and BEAUTY IN TRUTH, a portrait of writer Alice Walker.
TAGGART SIEGEL (See above)