Storm De Hirsch and Sally Dixon filming. Photograph from the Carnegie Museum of Art, Film and Video Department archive captured by Michael Chikiris 1971. (source:


PRODUCER & Director


BRIGID MAHER is a filmmaker and tenured, associate professor of Film and Media Arts Division in the School of Communication at American University. Her previous documentary, Veiled Voices, focuses on the phenomenon of Muslim women religious leaders in Islam. Veiled Voices is distributed by Typecast Releasing in the United States and has screened on over 150 public television stations and three national networks. Al Jazeera Network recently acquired the film for broadcast in the Middle East and North Africa. The film has additional international distribution through TVF International and has screened in numerous international festivals in the United States and abroad. Several of her films have international distribution, including her latest documentary, The Mama Sherpas  released in 2015 alongside producer Ricky Lake and Abby  Epstien ( The Business of Being Born) Maher won a Fulbright  Senior Award to teach broadcast media in Lebanon in the spring of 2005.

EXECutive Producer


ALEXANDER "ZANDER" DIXON is the son of Sally Dixon. Zander lives in St. Paul, Minnesota with his wife Emmy. Dixon, a chef, has owned restaurants and worked in as an executive chef for 35 years. He currently works as Executive Chef at the eldercare facility where Sally Dixon is currently a resident. As Sally's son, Zander was present at many of Sally's professional and social interactions over most of the span of Sally's Arts career. This project gives Zander the opportunity to review, consider, and take stock of Sally's life, thus giving him the gift reliving his mother's special life with new eyes. He has two older brothers, John Dixon, Jr., and Steven Dixon.


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EMMY VADNAIS is Sally Dixon’s daughter-in-law and the wife of her son, Alexander Dixon. She has enjoyed many fun and loving times with Sally, her family, and circle of friends. Emmy is grateful to help pull the pieces together to tell the story of Sally and her unique ability to influence many artists’ creations and careers, and support the evolution of avant garde film becoming its own art form. Emmy’s favorite film genre is documentary. She is an occupational therapist who specializes in complementary and integrative health, wellness, and prevention in St. Paul, MN.


ERIK VADNAIS received a B.A. from the Journalism school at the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN, and holds an M.S. in Technology Management from George Mason University, Fairfax, VA. He has fifteen years experience in the IT Security industry, ranging from tech support, to cloud security program management for a Fortune 20 telecommunications cloud service provider. Erik brings both knowledge of, and contacts in, the IT cloud and security industries. He is starting an analog-to-digital media conversion service by using private and cloud platforms. The company helps move your precious memories stored in shoeboxes under your stairs to your own personal LAN, or perhaps over the web to a protected cloud. You retain control over your personal digital media by putting you in control of who sees your content. It is the natural progression from Web 2.0 to your private collection or public media presentation. It’s the next innovation in family history storytelling. Before his IT career, Erik spent five years in the Navy as an Airman, Plane Captain, Journalist, and Public Affairs Officer. He served aboard the aircraft carrier USS America and the dock landing ship USS Oak Hill. During TWA Flight #800 search and recovery operations, he provided media support to the VP of the National Transportation Safety Board, the Speaker of the House, and the Director of the FBI.




REBEKAH WINGERT-JABI is a Peabody award-winning filmmaker. She produced and co-directed the documentary My Neighbourhood (2012), which premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, was released online by The Guardian and won the prestigious Peabody Award. Most recently, Rebekah produced and edited Naila and the Uprising (2017), produced by Just Vision in association with Fork Films, which had its US Premiere at DOCNYC, European Premiere at IDFA and Middle East Premiere at the Dubai International Film Festival. Naila is slated for broadcast in 2019 as part of the PBS series Women, War and Peace II. Rebekah has over fifteen years of producing, directing, and editing experience in film. Her work has aired on the Discovery Channel and Al Jazeera. Rebekah has taught filmmaking at American University, Al Quds University and Dar Kalima College. She achieved a Master of Fine Arts in Film and Television Production from the University of Southern California School of Cinematic Arts, where she was awarded the Thomas Bush Cinematography Scholarship and the Mary Pickford Foundation Documentary Directing & Editing Teaching Assistantship.

Story consultantS

ALEX PERRAULT brings the benefit of 20 years of expertise to his work - be it documentary, broadcast, advertising, corporate or web. An Emmy-nominated editor, clients include the Gates Foundation, PBS, Discovery, A&E, National Geographic, Amazon, Microsoft, and Disney. His documentary work has been featured in festivals around the world, including Hot Docs and SXSW, and can currently be seen on Netflix:


NIKKI JONES is an editor who has a long interest in documentary work. Recently, she was involved with “Sweetheart Deal,” a documentary about the struggle of working women living on the street. She has worked on projects bound for festivals, broadcast, and the web, and has worked for clients such as the Department of Energy, Microsoft, and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.


THOMAS NEUFELD currently works as a Film Preparation Technician at Colorlab in Rockville, MD, working with both archival collections and current materials. He received an undergraduate degree in English from Gettysburg College and a Master’s degree in Film and Video from American University. Part of his thesis on the work of Nagisa Oshima and the Japanese New Wave was recently presented at the University Film and Video Association Conference in summer 2017. He attempts to stay active in the DC music scene. 


KATIE RODDA currently works at the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped in the Library of Congress as a Music Specialist. Before this, she was selected as a 2012 Junior Fellow for the Recorded Sound section at the National Audio Visual Conservation Center in the Library of Congress. Katie holds a Master’s degree in Library and Information Science from the Catholic University of America, a Master's degree in music theory from Temple University, and a Bachelor’s degree in trombone performance from Gettysburg College.


BEN OGRODNIK is a PhD Candidate with joint entry in History of Art and Film Studies, Ben's research lies at the intersection of film and the visual arts. Ben’s dissertation examines the individuals and institutions that transformed Pittsburgh into a global center of avant-garde art and filmmaking in the 1970s and 1980s. He is especially interested in the remarkable flowering of media art centers and museum film programs across the world during those decades.


LINDSAY MATTOCK is an Assistant Professor at the University of Iowa School of Library and Information Science. Her work focuses on the archival practices of non-institutional archival spaces, such as media collectives and community archives. Her ongoing digital project, Mapping the Independent Media Community <> builds from archival resources and traces the historical social networks emerging between independent film and video makers, distributors, media arts centers, and cultural heritage institutions to understand how the historical conditions of the independent and avant-garde have influenced contemporary archival praxis.


CHELSEA BENTLEY is a graduate student pursuing an MA from American University’s Film and Media Arts program. She graduated from Providence College with a degree in Public Service and a minor in Theatre Acting. Working with Providence College Television, she has worked both behind and in front of the camera producing short fiction, news, and promotional pieces. She most recently worked for several years in corporate Philanthropy, where she explored the intersections of media, communications, community and social impact. She is a strong believer in the storytelling power of film and media to produce empathy and understanding.


EMILY CRAWFORD is a filmmaker, writer, and student living in Washington, DC. She holds a BA from Swarthmore College in English literature with a minor in art history, and is a third-year MFA candidate in Film and Electronic Media at American University. She’s currently working on her MFA capstone, a documentary about the mental health benefits of gaming. Prior to attending graduate school, Emily worked in the Program Operations department at PBS for nearly 4 years. When she’s not working as a freelance production assistant or making her own films, Emily writes about film, games, and media culture.


MARY ALICE MCMILLAN is an MFA candidate in American University’s Film and Media Arts program. She received her BA from the University of North Carolina School of Media and Journalism. Mary Alice hopes to pursue a career as an independent documentary filmmaker sharing stories that can mold and shape society and create positive change. In the past, she has created short films and promotional pieces for Carolina Cross Connection, the United Methodist Church, and Habitat for Humanity of D.C., among other independent projects. As a female filmmaker, she believes in the necessity of representation and inclusion in film, and intends to spend her career and influence providing outlets for all members of the community to create and inspire.


SHANNON SHIKLES is a graduate student in American University's Film and Media Arts Program. She received her Bachelors of Arts with Honors from Eckerd College in Film Studies and Environmental Studies. Her thesis, on the films of Wes Anderson, is published in Film Matters' first issue of Undergraduate Videographic Film Scholarship. Shannon is pursuing a career in documentary cinematography and editing. She currently works as a media intern with AU's Office of Sustainability as well as a production associate at a distillery in Ivy City, Washington DC.


VINCENT ‘VINNY’ TERLIZZI is a freelance camera operator and editor in the D.C. Area. Recently, Vincent has worked on “The New Klan, 2017 Restoration” produced by Bruce Skinner, “Naila and the Uprising” directed by Julia Bacha (2017), and “#humbled” directed by Russell Max Simon (2017). Vincent found passion in teaching and working with Super 16mm film; he currently works as an Optical Sound Technician and Media Encoder at Colorlab in Rockville, MD. Vincent holds a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from University of North Florida, and is currently pursuing a Masters of Fine Art in Film and Electronic Media at American University.

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AARON TUCKER is an MFA Film & Electronic Media candidate at American University. He frequents his time lighting and lensing commercial, narrative and documentary projects, as well as searching for photographic inspiration in cinema, painting, and other art forms. He aspires to direct photography for narrative films, in particular, those that examine family relationships, and how independent decisions affect the whole.


John Vadnais

Caroline Chadbourne

Derrik Jefferson