Deputy director Vidis to leave the Illinois Film Office for a top association position in mid-May

Megan Vidis, deputy director of the Illinois Film Office, will leave in mid-May for a position outside of the film industry, for the first time in her career.

Starting June 15, she will become the director of communications and marketing for the Respiratory Health Association of Metropolitan Chicago, a non-profit dedicated to fighting lung disease.

As the mother of a child with asthma, “I find their mission personally compelling,” she said of the Respiratory Health Association. Her 10-year old son, Eli Newman, has suffered from asthma since he was four.

A student at Near North Montessori and undaunted by his ailment, Eli is a busy union voiceover talent, who frequently works on McDonald’s commercials.

Vidis, who has been with the IFO for two-and-a-half years, has been in charge of commercial production, to which she brought her more than 15 years hands-on experience.

Previous to the IFO, she had been an active, independent producer of public information, corporate videos and political commercials.

“Although I’m excited to make this move,” Vidis said of her upcoming job change, “I’ll miss working with everybody.” She succeeded Bob Hudgins, an eight-year IFO veteran, who is the Texas film commissioner headquartered in Austin.

During Vidis’ tenure as head of the commercial sector, revenue from commercial production was $30 million in 2006, equal to feature production income.

In 2007, however, income from commercials was not broken out from the $155 million feature numbers released by the governor’s office. Spot income in 2007 was estimated as $30 million, the same as 2006, which would have adjusted film revenues to $125 million.

The IFO has a staff of eight. No word as yet as to who will replace Vidis, although a political appointee is the most likely candidate.

Vidis can be reached at 312/814-8380 until May 15. Her new Email address will be mvidis@lungchicago.org

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