In this “Golden Age” of television, the writers, producers, and directors behind our shows, and the actors that dominate our screens, are almost entirely white. Despite earnest attempts by content creators in Hollywood and elsewhere to reflect our nation’s diversity, the industry remains woefully imbalanced. As the third part of our ongoing series, this program explores how U.S. entertainment companies are revisiting their traditional models to meet the moment and help diversify this generation of stories and storytellers.
We are joined by:
- Jill Dickerson, Head of Unscripted Originals, Snap, Inc.
- John Gibson, Vice President, External and Multicultural Affairs, Motion Pictures Association
- Samata Narra, Senior Vice President, Enterprise Inclusion, WarnerMedia
- Win Rosenfeld, President, Monkeypaw
- Vivian Schiller, Executive Director, Aspen Digital
Jill Dickerson serves as Head of Unscripted Originals for Snap Inc., the parent company of Snapchat. As a senior member of the Snap Originals team, Jill leads the development of their docuseries and unscripted efforts from Snap’s Santa Monica headquarters. She most recently served as SVP, Programming & Development at OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network, where she had been since 2009.Previously Jill served as series producer for TLC’s “Miami Ink,” supervising producer for the hit VH-1 series “My Fair Brady,” supervising story producer for the premiere seasons of ABC series “The Bachelorette,” “The Mole,” and “Making the Band,” and senior story editor for CBS’ “Big Brother.” She got her start as a story editor on MTV’s “The Real World: Hawaii.” Jill holds an MFA in Culture & Media from New York University and a bachelor’s degree in Social Anthropology from Harvard & Radcliffe Colleges. She is a current Governor for the Reality Peer Group of the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences and lives in Sherman Oaks with her husband and 13 year old daughter.
John Gibson is one of the leading diversity, equity, and inclusion change agents in the country. In 2012, he established the Motion Picture Association’s DE&I program – working simultaneously to promote and highlight the association and its member studios’ multicultural initiatives, while also managing the MPA’s partnerships with national civil rights and multicultural groups as part of the association’s outreach to leading third party organizations. Prior to his work at the MPA, John advised the chief executives of an international private real estate investment management firm and two high-profile international corporate law firms. Earlier in his career, Gibson was a Clinton Administration appointee at the U.S. Department of Agriculture where he advised then-Secretary Dan Glickman on executive operations, employee relations and civil rights outreach while simultaneously serving on the USDA/1890s Task Force – the department’s partnership with the “land grant” Historically Black Colleges and Universities. He previously also worked as a Legislative Aide for U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA).
Samata Narra is senior vice president of Enterprise Inclusion, content strategy for WarnerMedia. She is responsible for building innovative tools and global systems across the company to help facilitate the advancement of equity and inclusion in our storytelling. Prior to joining WarnerMedia, she was senior vice President of Comedy Development and Current Programming for FOX where she developed and oversaw live action and animated comedy series including: The Last Man on Earth, Brooklyn Nine-Nine, New Girl, Bob’s Burgers, and the Mindy Project. She serves as President of the Board of Film2Future, a non-profit providing equitable access to the entertainment industry for underrepresented LA youth.). Samata is a native of Pikeville, Kentucky and earned a bachelor’s degree in Business Management and Marketing from the Boston University School of Management.
Win Rosenfeld is a writer-producer and President of Monkeypaw Productions. He oversees the company’s diverse slate of film and television productions, and is Executive Producer of The Twilight Zone and Hunters. Win is a producer on Monkeypaw’s upcoming feature film, Candyman, for which he also co-wrote the screenplay along with Jordan Peele and the film’s director, Nia DaCosta. Prior to joining the company, Win produced digital, social and broadcast content for various outlets including NBC, Slate and NPR, and edited an Emmy Award-winning segment at PBS.
Vivian Schiller is the Executive Director of Aspen Digital. A longtime executive at the intersection of journalism, media and technology, Schiller has held executive roles at some of the most respected media organizations in the world. Those include: President and CEO of NPR; Global Chair of News at Twitter; General Manager of NYTimes.com; Chief Digital Officer of NBC News; Chief of the Discovery Times Channel, a joint venture of The New York Times and Discovery Communications; and Head of CNN documentary and long form divisions. Documentaries and series produced under her auspices earned multiple honors, including three Peabody Awards, four Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia University Awards, and dozens of Emmys. Schiller is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations; and a Director of the Scott Trust, which owns The Guardian.