Amy Beste

Amy Beste

Amy Beste is a curator, scholar, and teacher of art and media. She serves as Director of Public Programs at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago where she organizes “Conversations at the Edge,” an award-winning series of screenings, performances, and talks by leading media artists. Recent exhibitions as an independent curator include Up is Down: Mid-Century Experiments in Advertising and Film at the Goldsholl Studio (The Block Museum of Art, Evanston), the exhibition catalog for which won a 2019 award for excellence from the Association of Art Museum Curators (AAMC). Beste received her PhD from Northwestern University.

Kevin Lee Burton

Kevin Lee Burton

Kevin Lee Burton (Swampy Cree) is an award-winning multidisciplinary artist from God’s Lake Narrows, MB. Starting out in film+video, Kevin has migrated into various art genres including Interactive, Installation, Photography & Social Work. Kevin’s work focuses on Indigenous expression and celebration. Aside from his Directorial work, Kevin has engaged in the Arts in various capacities from creator/collaborator on projects to office administration. Kevin has worked as program assistant for the Native and Indigenous Initiative at the Sundance Institute in Beverly Hills, California; as associate programmer for Out On Screen’s IndigeQUEER program in Vancouver; program facilitator for various Indigenous focused programs across Canada, and is also a founding member of the ITWĒ Collective. Formally trained through all-Aboriginal training Programs in the Indigenous Independent Digital Filmmaking Program and through the Indigenous Media Arts Group in Vancouver, Kevin has been carving a niche in working with his ancestral language, Cree.


Ada Vilageliu Díaz

Ada Vilageliu Díaz is an Assistant Professor at the University of the District of Columbia in Washington, DC. She teaches writing and literature courses with a focus on community engagement. She is also a published author and her creative writing is based on the reconstruction of her indigenous Guanche heritage. Her cinematic directorial debut was in 2014 with the documentary Near the River about environmental women leaders in the DC area. This film was in the official selection of film festivals in Colombia, Brazil, India, Spain, and the US.


Trent Farrington

Trent Farrington originally from the US Virgin Islands, he is an Atlanta-based Filmmaker and Arts Organizer. He is the Festival Manager and Senior Programmer at Out on Film , Atlanta's LGBTQ+ Film Festival and Southern Features Programmer at the New Orleans Film Society. Over five years, he's focused on uplifting BIPOC and Queer voices in Independent Cinema, leveraging his background in Film, TV, and Theatre.  His commitment to destigmatizing AIDS/HIV earned him the 2021 Project Innovator award from THRIVE SS. Apart from his role at Out on Film, Farrington is a respected curator and film critic at various national organizations, contributing significantly to festivals and impactful events. As one of the youngest members of the Georgia Film Critics Association, his dedication to amplifying marginalized voices stands out in more impactful means. Recently, he played a key role in the 2023 Groundwork Regional Lab review committee with Firelight Media, choosing eight documentary filmmakers to receive $45,000 each for completing nonfiction stories from the US territories.


Dean Otto

Dean Otto is the founding Curator of Film at the Speed Art Museum in Louisville, KY where he heads a state-of-the art cinema with a robust program of art house cinema, restorations, experimental film, and socially engaged programming. Otto was formerly at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis for over two decades in the Moving Image Department organizing screenings and enlivening the use of films from the collection.


Garrett Stralnic

Garrett Stralnic is a writer and film curator with expertise in LGBTQ and art house cinema. He curated a variety of shorts programs for the 2000 and 2001 Maryland Film Festivals (MDFF) and organizes a film series called CineQueer Baltimore. Garrett values collaboration and worker’s rights. He is an early organizing committee member for Walters Workers United, the employee union for the historic Walters Art Museum which successfully won recognition via election this past summer.