Women in Film kick off a new year of activities

Breaking into first person voice is not something I ordinarily do, nor do I single out special interests. However, I’m making an exception to flag your attention to a special event, something else I don’t usually do.

It’s Women in Film’s Kickoff party/membership drive on Thursday, Jan. 27, which I believe is an essential connection for any woman who is serious about a film/visual media career

Women take for granted the status and meaningful jobs available to them, which were gained through the efforts of a lot of women who were determined to open what was familiarly called “the men’s locker room.”

They went up against the status quo for gender parity but it wasn’t until the unity of WIF took hold that the locker room finally went co-ed.

WIFC’s goals are in tempo with the technology that drives the industry and changes business models – changing in nano seconds, it seems — and knowledge and growth are preeminent considerations to stay current.

WIFC provides that knowledge, plus support and connections that help fulfill ambitions in an industry that will continue to be competitive and fragmented. Its monthly events are like post-grad courses in film and marketing communications.

Build-A-Skill Workshops and the Backlot series are learning experiences that put members up-close-and-personal inside a variety of facilities. Executive Breakfast connect members with influential women leaders with good counsel to impart. After Hours is a chance to hang out and rap at new and different venues around town.

The annual Focus Awards, held in October, brings it all together in honoring well-deserving local achievers and a famous Hollywood celebrity with Chicago roots.

These activities are worth the price of admission. That’s a reduced membership fee when you sign up at the party. A $250 professional membership, usually $250, will be $200; general membership for $100 instead of $125 and students $28 instead of $35.

The party will be held at the swank, new Aja bar in the Dana Hotel on Erie and State. There’s an open bar from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., free-flowing appetizers and many nifty raffle prizes. Everyone gets a raffle ticket with their ticket and more will be available.

If you pay at the door, ticket prices are $15 for WIFC, IPA and IFP members, and $20 for others. Or prepay: $5 for WIFC, IPA and IFP members, $10 for others.

I know you’ll have a great time. And BTW, guys are more than welcome to attend.

For the record, here are the hard-working women who comprise the WIFC board. Megan Vidis, president; Lisa Goepfrich, vice president; Marianne Greco, secretary; Rise Sanders, treasurer; Kelli Weber, career development; Alisha Horton, sponsorship; Toni Reed, Focus Awards; Mindy Hilt, online presence; Jill Neusner, membership, Jayme Joyce, internal communications; Denise Potts Mueller and Angela Sheridan, public relations; Sara Evans, mentorship and Marcy Null, networking.

See WIFC’s new and improved website at wifchicago.org. —Ruth L Ratny