Focus Awards honor Wiegan, Dickens, Mindeman Oct. 16

Focus Awards honoree director Ky Dickens

WOMEN IN FILM HONOREES for the 2013 Focus Awards coming up Wednesday, Oct. 16 are director of photography and Michigan native Lisa Wiegand, working here on “Chicago Fire,” a veteran DP of numerous TV series and one of the very few female DPs of TV series;

Ky Dickens, director of national commercials and an award-winning director of feature-length “Sole Survivor,” recently acquired by CNN Films for worldwide distribution;

Katy Mindeman, Particle Audio’s lead engineer, one of only two known female engineers in Chicago, who works on international brands and longform and short films.  Off duty, she is VP of new Reach Out Community Center, an after-school program opeing on the West Side.

The Focus Awards are WIF’s major fundraiser of the year, taking  place at the Museum of Broadcasting, starting at 6 p.m. Tickets are $125 for members and $150 for non-members.

EVPS ABOUND AT ENERGY BBDO – one new and two recently promoted.  New to the agency is EVP group creative director Nancy Hannon, who has returned to Chicago after five-years at The Martin Agency, Richmond, Va.

Earlier, Hannon was a top-ranking creative at Leo Burnett, Y&R and DDB Chicago, and whose client roster includes Wal-Mart, Hanes, Sears, Rebok, Secret, Noxzema, Living Social, etc., etc.

BTW, while VP and SVP are not uncommon titles, Hannon is in a class of her own as one of very few agency women at the EVP/GCD level.   

EVP promotions were earned by Rick Hammann, who created Wrigley’s beautiful Extra gum commercial and Tim Pontaretti, who had been with Leo Burnett for 20 years working on every account there before joining Energy BBDO.

ROOM SERVICE, the new LA boutique production company of director Chace Strickland and EP Kelly Amato, has reconnected with Chicago by signing with Nathan Skillicorn’s company, Heart, Brains & Nerve for Midwest sales representation. 

Fifteen years ago, Skillicorn’s father, the veteran rep Roy Skillicorn, brought Strickland and Amato into Backyard Productions, the top commercial company he founded in Chicago that grew into a global entity.

Calling Strickland an important addition to his directorial roster, he says, “Chace is noted for life style, families, children and realistic performances and this will certainly connect with local blue chip brands.”

Heart, Brains & Nerve represents Big DeahlFilmworkers & VitaminHUM Music and The Artists Company and Skillicorn also  represents talent through Free Agents-Patricia Claire Co. of New York.  

HALLOWEEN COSTUMES WANTED! Christian Taylor and Sharon Anderlik, members of, a unique international organization comprised of 36 women voiceovers, are heading a drive to collect Halloween costumes for youngsters, with the cooperation of the good folks at Chicago Recording. 

The costumes will be donated to Care for Real in Edgewater, whose mission is to help disadvantaged families with food, clothing and schools. 

Drop off your used ghost, princess, vampire, super hero and other Halloween personae at CRC, 232 E. Ohio, through Oct. 13.  Contest prizes for donors include Sennheiser microphones.

TODAY’S DON’T MISS EVENTS. Today, Key Code’s Post IBC Expo Chicago at Castle Entertainment (formerly Excalibur), Ohio and Dearborn, 2-6 p.m.  Free, including presentations, raffle prizes and happy hour. 

Agency GERTRUDE and the recently revived Art Directors Club screen the 92nd Annual Awards of the Art 7 Craft in Advertising and the Tomorrow Awards.  At the Cobra Lounge, 6:30 p.m.  See the complete Chicago Film Industry Events listing elsewhere in the Reel.

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