Meet The Team

The Free for All team is made up of Oscar-nominated documentary filmmakers whose work illuminates some of the most pressing issues of our time. This film is a project of Serendipity Films, LLC.


Director Dawn Logsdon

Dawn Logsdon‘s career has been dedicated to making films about civic issues and city life, particularly at the neighborhood level. She directed and produced Faubourg Treme: The Untold Story of Black New Orleans (2008), which premiered nationally at the Tribeca International Film Festival. It went on to win the SFIFF Golden Gate Award for Best Documentary and was a PBS Black History Month feature presentation three years in a row. Dawn co-directed and edited Big Joy: The Adventures of James Broughton (2013) and Lindy Boggs: Steel and Velvet (2008). Dawn edited the Sundance Award-winning Paragraph 175 by Rob Epstein & Jeffrey Freidman, Academy Award-nominated Weather Underground by Sam Green, Emmy award-winning Have You Heard from Johannesburg?, and the Peabody award-winning The Castro.


Producer Lucie Faulknor

Lucie Faulknor produced and researched Faubourg Treme: The Untold Story of Black New Orleans and has worked with award-winning directors Dorothy Fadiman and Lynn Hershman-Leeson in the areas of fundraising, publicity, outreach and community engagement. Faulknor has also produced Dublin Ireland’s first Women in Film & Television film festival. She works for a number of arts organizations including City Arts & Lectures, SFJAZZ, Palace of Fine Arts Theater, the Irish Arts Foundation, Stern Grove Festival, Yerba Buena Gardens, Dublin (IRL) Fringe Festival. She has a Master’s degree in Nonprofit Administration from USF’s School of Business & Professional Studies and a B.A. in Arts Management from SFSU. Lucie is a fourth generation San Francisco Public Library user.

Executive Producer Stanley Nelson

Stanley Nelson is an Emmy-winning MacArthur “genius” and one of the premier documentary filmmakers working today, with five films in competition at Sundance in ten years and multiple industry awards to his credit. His recent films include The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution, Freedom Riders, winner of three primetime Emmys in 2011, Jonestown: The Life and Death of Peoples Temple, which was shortlisted for the Academy Awards and won the International Documentary Association Award for its use of archival footage; and more. Currently Nelson is co-founder and Executive Director of Firelight Media, a non-profit that provides technical education and professional support to emerging documentarians.


Executive Producer Marcia Smith

Marcia Smith is President and co-Founder of Firelight Media, which supports diverse filmmakers, connects media to audiences in service of social change, and through its sister organization, produces feature length and short documentary films. In 2015, Firelight Media was honored with a MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions.

Marcia co-founded Firelight in 2000, and led the organization for the next eight years. Prior to returning to Firelight in 2012, Marcia served as Senior Vice President at The Atlantic Philanthropies, a multi-billion dollar charitable foundation active in seven countries. Among other awards, Marcia has received a Primetime Emmy nomination for writing, won the Writers’ Guild Award for best nonfiction writing, and was honored with a 2016 Muse Award from New York Women in Film & Television.


Executive Producer Ellen Schneider

Ellen Schneider has been a leader in social justice media strategies for over 20 years. In 2001, with support from MacArthur and Ford Foundations, she founded Active Voice, one of the first teams to leverage story-based media to put human faces on complex social and policy issues. Ellen was formerly the executive producer of P.O.V., PBS’ original series of independent non-fiction film, where she expanded P.O.V.’s parent company American Documentary into production, (Right Here, Right Now, a pilot for one of PBS’ first reality series) and strategic community engagement (High Impact Television® and the Television Race Initiative). She speaks widely about the role of media in public life, from Harvard’s Neiman Foundation to Cambridge University; from the Council on Foundations to Netroots Nation; from Sundance Film Festival to the National Endowment for the Arts. She has worked closely with media-savvy pioneers like Atlantic Philanthropies, MacArthur Foundation, Ford Foundation, and Participant Media.


Associate Producer Ellie McCutcheon

Ellie McCutcheon has worn many hats for Free for All (and beyond). These days, her favorite hat keeps her ears warm as she documents Northern California’s most dramatic landscapes with a drone, or while she mimics crane, dolly, and other cinematic storytelling shots with same said drone. You might also find her building websites (like this one!), digging into archives as a researcher, or playing ukulele after laser printing poems on wood panels.


Outreach Coordinator Jennifer Huang

Jennifer Huang is currently coordinating outreach and engagement for Free for All: Inside the Public Library and directing The Long Rescue, following the rocky path of teens rebuilding their lives after sex trafficking in the Philippines. Previously, Jennifer co-produced From Baghdad to the Bay, a feature documentary following an Iraqi refugee turned gay rights activist, and Standing on Sacred Ground, a PBS series about indigenous people fighting to protect their sacred sites around the world. Additionally, Jennifer coordinated shoots and archival research for the American Masters documentary, Jacques Pepin: The Art of Craft, and at the documentary department of Lucasfilm, she wrote and produced Harlem’s Hellfighters: Black Soldiers of World War I and associate-produced nine other films. Additionally, Jennifer has worked as a writer, field producer and associate producer on independent productions for American Masters, PBS, Anonymous Content, the Travel Channel, HGTV, TNT and AZN TV.


Director Of Photography Vicente Franco

Vicente Franco was a 2003 Oscar Best Documentary nominee and Emmy nominee for Outstanding Achievement in Cinematography for Daughter From Danang. That film won the Sundance Film Festival 2002 Grand Jury Prize. Other cinematography credits include the Academy Award-nominated films The Most Dangerous Man In America and Freedom On My Mind. He shot American Experience’s Orozco: Man Of Fire, POV specials Discovering Dominga and Thirst, He also shot Botany Of Desire, The Judge And The General, and The Fight In The Fields: Cesar Chavez And The Farmer Workers’ Struggle.


Editor Debra Schaffner

Debra Schaffner is an editor and filmmaker of all things short and long, with an emphasis on art, education and body parts. Her work has screened at venues including SF DOC FEST, DOCS/MX, FRAMELINE and aired on PBS and SMG (China). She enjoys breaking into zoos and setting all the monkeys and penguins free, but has never been arrested. She is currently directing her first feature doc, Curse of the Mutant Heirloom, with support from Cal Humanities and the BAVC MediaMaker program.


Editor Elizabeth Finlayson

Elizabeth Finlayson has decades of experience as an editor and writer for documentary film and video. In addition to In and Out of Time, her credits include the award-winning films Satya: A Prayer For The Enemy, The Kids of Survival: Tim Rollins and K.O.S., Samsara, Barbie Nation, and Blink.


Editor Manuel Tsingaris

Manuel Adrian Tsingaris has been an editor for over twenty years. He edited the feature documentary, Alive Inside, which won the US Audience Award for Best Documentary at Sundance 2014. Recent works include The Latino Americans, a 6-hour Peabody Award-winning PBS mini-series retelling US history through a Latin lens; and the award winning documentary, Purgatorio, a poetic fable exploring the beauty and brutality of the US/Mexico Border.


Associate Editor Eric Risher

Eric Risher has worked as an assistant editor films that have screened at numerous festivals, including AFI Docs, Full Frame, Telluride, and The Cleveland International Film Festival. His first film was a short documentary called FURRIES, which had its world premiere at the Frameline Film Festival in San Francisco.


Composer Derrick Hodge

Two-time grammy Award-winning bassist and Blue Note Recording Artist Derrick Hodge has written and arranged for both the recording and live arenas, from composing original music for the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, to arranging for Nas and the National Symphony Orchestra, as well as composing the original work Infinite Reflections for the Chicago Brass Ensemble. He has also directed and scored other projects—from acting as co-Musical Director for the 2015 Triumph Awards and arranging strings for Mos Def’s 2008 premiere at Carnegie Hall—to writing for films such as Back to School Mom, the 180 Days documentary series for PBS, Land of Opportunity, Black Candle, The Army Recruiter and Uneasy Listening. Early film work includes When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts for which he did additional writing and scoring; Who the #$&% Is Jackson Pollock?, and Faubourg Tremé: A Story of Black New Orleans.


 

 

Back to top