Maureen DeCicco (Board President) has more than 28 years of professional accounting and audit experience, encompassing 23 years of public accounting experience with WithumSmith+Brown, PC, a top Regional Public Accounting Firm, and five years in private industry accounting and internal audit. She is the Team Leader of Withum's Media Broadcasting and Entertainment Group and a team member of the Risk Advisory Group. In addition to providing audit and accounting services to the broadcasting, construction, manufacturing, distribution, publishing, healthcare and not for profit industries, Maureen specializes in consulting engagements, including Sarbanes-Oxley assistance, Outsourced Internal Audit services, and Risk Advisory consulting services for both financial and operational management. She has previous experience in private accounting as an internal auditor for a large closely-held international pharmaceutical and consumer products company, working with all operational and financial areas within the company as well as start-up company experience in the telecommunications space. Maureen received her BA degree in accounting from William Paterson University, NJ. She is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and the New Jersey Society of Certified Public Accountants (NJSCPA). She is an active member of the New Jersey Broadcasters Association and Media Financial Management Association. She was named in 2011 NJBiz, "Top 50 Women in Business." She is treasurer for the Thomas Edison Media Arts Consortium, Black Maria Film Festival as well as a member of the William Paterson University Cotsakos College of Business Advisory and Advancement Advisory Board.
Matt Savare (Board Vice-President) is a partner at the national law firm Lowenstein Sandler LLP. He focuses his practice on all types of commercial agreements and intellectual property, digital advertising, technology, media, and privacy issues. Matt counsels clients on a wide range of copyright, trademark, trade secret, and right of publicity matters, with a particular emphasis on new and disruptive technologies. Matt also counsels clients on information privacy and data security issues, cybersquatting, domain name disputes, and technology licensing. During his time as a litigator, Matt handled various entertainment, intellectual property, false advertising, right of publicity, and privacy disputes, including defending a copyright infringement suit filed by the Estate of Frank Zappa and assisting in the successful defense of David Chase in connection with The Sopranos. He actively participates in fundraising efforts aimed at research into childhood cancers. He received his law degree from Seton Hall School of Law, his master's degree in corporate and public communication from Monmouth University, and his undergraduate degree in economics from Drew University.
Steven Gorelick (Board Treasurer) is Executive Director of the New Jersey Motion Picture and Television Commission, the state agency responsible for promoting film and television production in New Jersey. During his 36 year tenure with the Commission, New Jersey has hosted over 21,000 projects, enhancing the state economy by over $2 billion. Mr. Gorelick has also authored articles that have appeared in numerous publications, including the New York Daily News, the New York Post, The Bergen Record, and Variety. Additionally, he has written a number of television documentaries, including Movie Matrimony (AMC) and The Movies Return (NJN), and produced many videos for exhibition in the New Jersey Hall of Fame Mobile Museum. He has received credits on dozens of motion picture and television productions throughout the years. A lifelong resident of New Jersey, Mr. Gorelick grew up in Edison and graduated from Rutgers University.
Jonathan Cole (Board Secretary) has been working within the insurance and capital market industries for nearly 30 years. In the early 1980's he designed, programmed, and implemented one of the first PC-based, networked commodity trading systems for gold and silver traders of the Comex, part of the NY Commodity Exchange. He was also a member of the Comex, the precious metals division of the NY Commodity Exchange, trading in the gold ring. Cole co-founded and was President of Appsolutions, Inc. a software development firm specializing in software tools for developers. During this time he travelled the world including Paris, London, Cologne, and the US as a featured lecturer on object-oriented design and implementation. Cole spent over 12 years on the Glen Rock Board of Education, serving three years as its president. He graduated from Syracuse University and lives in Glen Rock, NJ.
Clayton Hemmert (Trustee) is a founder of Crew Cuts in New York City, a post-production company for editing, graphics, special effects, sound design & mixing. Over their 20+ years they've collaborated on commercials, feature films, shorts, television series, and music videos - in addition to content for mobile and web platforms. Their work has garnered over 200 awards from The Sundance Film Festival, Cannes Lions, Clios, Emmys, The Grammy Awards, and the Black Maria Film Festival. Monsters Ball and Kissing Jessica Stein are among the indie features that Crew Cuts has edited, as well as their television work for Saturday Night Live and MTV. In addition to editing and directing, Clayton has also served as: President of the Board for AICE International - a not-for-profit editing association representing over 2000 editors and post production companies in the US and Canada; and President of the Board of the Black Maria Film Festival.
David S. Denenberg (Trustee) is the Senior Vice President, Global Media Distribution & Business Affairs at NBA Entertainment. Denenberg is responsible for negotiating agreements and helping manage relationships relating to all facets of NBAE's domestic and international media business, including television, film, radio, music, digital media, photography and talent. Denenberg also negotiates distribution and affiliation agreements relating to NBA TV and NBA League Pass and frequently advises NBA, WNBA and D League teams on a variety of issues relating to their television and entertainment businesses. In addition, Denenberg oversees the league's footage licensing, photography and extended-market television businesses and is actively involved in advising USA Basketball on a variety of initiatives. Denenberg currently serves on the Board of Governors for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame where he also serves on the Finance Committee.
Prior to joining the NBA in March 1995, Denenberg worked in the Corporate Department of Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker in New York City. A 1991 cum laude graduate of Harvard Law School, Denenberg graduated magna cum laude from Colgate University in 1988. He currently resides in New Jersey with his wife and three children.
Edgar Hidalgo (Trustee) is Director and Corporate Counsel at Toys "R" Us, Inc. in Wayne, NJ. Edgar began his legal career at the law firms of Lowenstein Sandler LLP and Reed Smith LLP. His private practice was primarily focused on intellectual property, privacy and technology related transactions and commercial contracts. He has extensive experience in drafting and negotiating a broad range of transactions including licensing, promotion, distribution, services, development, and joint venture agreements in the retail, media, entertainment, technology, digital advertising, and pharmaceutical industries. Edgar is an adjunct professor of business law at the Feliciano School of Business at Montclair State University. He received his Juris Doctor and Master of Business Administration degrees from Georgetown University, and his Bachelor of Business Administration degree from the University of Miami, where he also completed a minor in film.
Cali Macchia (Advisory Board) is a graduate of New Jersey City University's film program. She has worked on several independent features as a cinematographer or 1st assistant camera. Her freelance career has been varied working in film and video production as a camera and lighting person. For the past fifteen years she has been teaching television production at the high school level and more recently as an adjunct professor at Seton Hall University and New Jersey City University. Along with her teaching responsibilities she manages and produces programming for a local access television station that cablecasts to three towns in Passaic County. Examples of programs produced are documentaries about special school projects such as the student body participation in a Habitat for Humanity build, the implementation of a Green Space on campus and the live television broadcast of Girls' Show. Cali currently works simultaneously as an educator and digital film professional.
Christopher Corey (Advisory Board) is both a filmmaker and a NJ public school teacher. Chris has nine years' experience teaching film and television production at the high school level. Over the last nine years his students have consistently won awards for their work and they have exhibited their films in numerous local, national, and international film festivals. Before he began teaching, Chris worked for eight years in New York City with various commercial production companies. He currently teaches at Middletown High School South in Monmouth County. He completed his MFA in film production at William Paterson University.
Don Jay Smith (Advisory Board) has more than 35 years of public relations, marketing communications, fund raising and concert production experience. He has worked in the arts and entertainment field for much of that time, with a roster of clients that has included the New Jersey State Council for the Arts/Secretary of State, the New Jersey Hall of Fame, the Community Theatre of Morristown (now MPAC), ArtPride New Jersey, the Whole Theatre with Olympia Dukakis, the Montclair (NJ) Cultural Commission, the Madison (NJ) Arts and Culture Alliance, the Carolyn Dorfman Dance Company, Papermill Playhouse, First Night New Jersey and the New Jersey Jazz Society. Among his many projects, he has launched the New Jersey Hall of Fame, co-founded the Community Theatre in Morristown, created the Discover Jersey Arts Campaign, and instituted and produced the Morristown Jazz & Blues Festival. Mr. Smith has also supported individual artists with public relations activities and booking opportunities, including comedian/actor Rob Bartlett, jazz drummer Winard Harper, John Pizzarelli's Radio Deluxe, LaBamba's Big Band, the Duke Ellington Legacy Bank, jazz flutist Andrea Brachfeld, and track and field star Joetta Clark Diggs. Currently he serves as an advisor to businesses and arts organizations in matters of organizational management, brand development, marketing & public relations, audience development, event production, fund raising and strategic planning.
Joel Katz (Advisory Board) works in experimental and documentary film and video. His works have been broadcast on national PBS television, shown at the Museum of Modern Art, and are in festival and educational distribution worldwide. He serves on the boards of Third World Newsreel (since 1999) and the Black Maria Film Festival (since 2011). He was a Fulbright Scholar in 2008 and is Professor and Chair of the Media Arts Department of New Jersey City University.
Thomas Torres-Cordova (Advisory Board) was born and raised in Saint Petersburg, Florida by Puerto Rican parents. Thomas Torres (MFA Bard College) is a filmmaker with writing, directing and director of photography credits. His work includes narrative, documentary, music video and performance art in the tradition of expanded cinema. He shot the award-winning documentary An Encounter with Simone Weil (2010), and PBS-broadcast documentary Strange Fruit (2002) directed by Joel Katz. His films/videos, including White Dwarf and Sonido Blanco, have aired on the Sundance Channel and screened at numerous festivals. His expanded cinema film, Everybody Loves the Sunshine (2007), was featured in a 2009 solo show at the Amie and Tony James Gallery in NYC as well as TAT in Berlin and Franco Soffiantino in Torino Italy. Currently, Thomas is co-directing a feature documentary entitled LA Roll.