The AFME Foundation is a 501 (c) (3) non-profit formed to make a difference in our collective community during AFMX and through year-round programming. Our purpose is to provide opportunities for future generations while increasing exposure and economic impact for the City of Albuquerque and the State of New Mexico. Each year, we bring filmmakers, musicians, artists and visionaries together to celebrate the art of storytelling and collaborate into the future.
The foundation produces the annual Albuquerque Film & Music Experience and provides support to students and up-and-coming New Mexico filmmakers, artists and musicians who, otherwise, may never pursue their college education or realize their artistic dreams. With so many talented students of the arts in the Land of Enchantment, our goal is to offer assistance in earning degrees in their respective field of study, further their careers and keep them, and their talents, right here in New Mexico.
Students are invited to volunteer at AFMX, attend educational panels, workshops and Intimate Coversations with talent for free, and take advantage of free passes to the overall festival through our "Sponsor a Student at AFMX" program.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
IVAN WIENER – EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, AFMX
With over 25 years of experience in hospitality and entertainment, and seven years serving as a film festival executive producer, Ivan has become a key resource and go-to person in New Mexico for A-list talent, producers, directors and other clients in the film and entertainment industry. He takes great pride in providing a platform for economic growth and opportunities for students as Executive Director of the Albuquerque Film & Music Experience. He also serve as a Board member of the AFMX Foundation.
Ivan owns Reel Solutions, one of the premiere concierge and consulting services in New Mexico. Reel Solutions has worked with some of the biggest names in film and television as it is the only company authorized to provide airport meet and greet services at Albuquerque International Airport. These services give a great first and last impression of client experiences in the Land of Enchantment.
Ivan has been a producer on several short films, television shows, documentaries and commercials and is working his way into producing feature films and documentaries. Ivan is the former Head Concierge of the historic Watergate Hotel in Washington, D.C. and a former personal assistant to the late actor Dennis Hopper.
JEFF BAKER – PRESIDENT OF THE BOARD
Jeff Baker is the managing partner of The Baker Law Group. He is a former chair of the New Mexico region of the Anti-Defamation League, and is a member of ADL’s National Civil Rights Committee. Jeff currently serves on the New Mexico Supreme Court Professional Conduct Committee, and he is a member of the Client Protection Fund Commission. Jeff has testified as an expert witness in matters involving attorney’s fees and attorney ethics. He is listed in Best Lawyers in America (legal malpractice). Jeff’s involvement with AFMX stems from his interest in encouraging students to use film to promote diversity, respect, and tolerance.
LARRY SCHWARTZ – PAST PRESIDENT
Larry is President of the Board and has served on the Foundation’s Board of Directors since its inception. He serves as Vice President – Investments for Wells Fargo Advisors LLC. Larry graduated from the University of New Mexico in 1985 and has been a resident of New Mexico for 37 years. He is a tenor saxophone player and has a passion for bringing people together for a co-creative community. As a businessman, Schwartz has sat on both sides of the table, as a corporate executive and board member of several non-profits. AFMX is proud to have Larry’s experience and dedication to growth in the community as part of its program.
BRUCE MALOTT – BOARD MEMBER
Bruce F. Malott, CPA, CFF, is the founder and managing principal of O2 CPA Consulting Group. O2 CPA is a boutique consulting and tax firm that specializes in helping small businesses navigate complex tax, funding and profitability issues, as well as in helping individuals achieve their personal financial goals. Beyond tax advice and business consulting, Bruce is a nationally recognized forensic accounting expert with experience in testifying in over 100 cases.
In 1983, Bruce started his own firm which grew to be recognized for its innovative marketing, outstanding customer service, and high level of professional expertise. By the time the firm was acquired in 2011, the firm had grown into a $10 million firm with over 70 employees. This acquisition allowed Bruce to return to his true calling, helping small businesses.
AUGUSTA MYERS – BOARD MEMBER
Currently works as Communications Manager for the Mid Region Coucil of Governments through which much of the federal funds flow for transportation planning and workforce development in Central New Mexico.
Also, serves as spokesperson for the state's only commuter rail system - the New Mexico Rail Runner Express.
Former Anchorwoman/Reporter for the ABC affiliate channel 7 for 16-years where she won several awards for her coverage of current events both locally and nationally. A natural lover of the written and spoken word, Augusta is passionate about her voice-over work and continues to narrate and appear in various videos.
SIBYLLE SZAGGARS-REDFORD – ADVISORY BOARD
Sibylle Szaggars Redford is a German born artist who has been living in the USA since the mid 90’s. For the last 25 years she has dedicated her life to creating art professionally and has exhibited her work throughout Europe, Monaco, Peru, Singapore, Japan and the United States.
In 2008, Szaggars exhibited a number of large oil paintings at the Classical Music – Tuscan Sun Festival in Cortuna, Italy and the Singapore Sun Festival in Singapore – for which the internationally known cellist Nina Kotova had composed a series of short compositions for solo cello which were recorded and played during those Exhibitions. In 2010, Szaggars Redford started to experiment with the elements of Rain and Watercolor and created her first Rain video. She lives and creates in Napa Valley, California and Santa Fe, New Mexico and exhibits her work internationally.
NATHAN EAST – ADVISORY BOARD
Grammy nominated bassist Nathan East, credited on more than 2,000 recordings is recognized as one of the most recorded musicians in music. He is a founding member of contemporary jazz supergroup Fourplay with Bob James, Lee Ritenour & Harvey Mason. East has performed and collaborated with Eric Clapton, BB King, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, Dave Grusin, George Harrison, Ringo, Quincy Jones, Toto & Daft Punk with Nathan's bass line driving the worldwide hit "Get Lucky". East co-wrote "Easy Lover" with Phil Collins & Philip Bailey earning him an MTV Video Award.
In 2014 Nathan released his debut album on the Yamaha Entertainment Group label which went to #1 on the Billboard Jazz Charts and won a Grammy nomination for Best Contemporary Instrumental Album. His second solo album "Reverence" (2017) also reached #1 on the Billboard Jazz & Contemporary Jazz charts.
East, a graduate of University of California San Diego with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Music was honored by The United States Congress with a Congressional Record for his contribution to the worldwide music community.
Nathan’s award winning documentary “For The Record” was featured at AFME in 2016 where he received the prestigious AFME Music Award.
For more info go to: www.nathaneast.com
CARISSA MITCHELL - ADVISORY BOARD
Carissa Mitchell is the Owner and SAG-AFTRA Franchised Talent Agent at Mitchell & Associates Talent, with branches in Los Angeles and New Mexico. Prior to becoming an agent, she had earned an excellent reputation working in the casting and AD departments of many independent films and local film festivals. She also co-produced projects that were designed to encourage the involvement of local film students, SAG-AFTRA actors, Union mentors, and businesses in the support of independent productions.
Before entering into the entertainment industry, Carissa was a graphic designer, art director, and special events coordinator for almost twenty years. She has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in Fine Art and Photography.
A self-proclaimed nerd and film buff, Carissa couldn’t be happier to represent amazing actors and being a part of this wonderful industry!
CLARA R. APODACA – ADVISORY BOARD
Clara Apodaca is the Vice President of the Board. She is the former First Lady of New Mexico, a Patron of the Arts and former President & CEO of the National Hispanic Cultural Center Foundation, returning home to New Mexico after 18 years in Washington, DC in 2006.
Clara was selected for 100 Influentials by Hispanic Business Magazine in October 2008. She serves on the Board of Directors of Think New Mexico, New Mexico First and the International Women’s Forum. While living in DC, she also served as Commissioner on the DC Commission of the Arts & Humanities and was appointed to the White House Millennium Commission by former First Lady Hillary Clinton. Clara received the 2010 New Mexico Spirit of Achievement Award from National Jewish Health for community service. She was also honored by the Wheels Museum at their annual gala. Clara worked as a consultant in Washington, DC, after serving in the Clinton Administration from 1993 to January 2001. >From 1989 to 1993, she was General Assistant to the Chairman of the Democratic National Committee. Prior to moving to Washington, Clara served as Cabinet Secretary for the New Mexico Office of Cultural Affairs from 1984 to l987. Clara is the mother of 5 children and has 10 grandchildren.
ROBERT SINGER - ADVISORY BOARD
As one of New Mexico's leading entertainment attorneys, Robert Singer has had the privilege of representing and working with many prominent entertainment industry companies, actors, performing artists, writers, producers and technicians over many years, and has been involved at the legal, business and creative levels of many exciting entertainment and major construction projects both in this State, around the country, and in various international venues as well (including Spain, the United Kingdom, Germany, China, Japan, Taiwan, Mexico, El Salvador, Brazil, South Korea and others). Among these projects include the formation and representation of many entertainment production, marketing and distribution companies as well as participation in the development, organization and representation of numerous film and television productions, theme park developments and related shows and attractions, live concerts and performances, and sound-and-light special events.
JOANIE GRIFFIN - ADVISORY BOARD
Joanie Griffin is the CEO and founder of Sunny505. She has over 30 years of experience in the communications and marketing field—starting Griffin & Associates in 1990. As a successful small business owner, Joanie knows the importance of creating a memorable and lasting brand for a business. Though the media world has evolved greatly, Joanie has always adapted media strategies to most effectively serve her clients’ needs. Joanie has remained at the forefront of marketing and advertising by building communications plans that integrate shared media, owned media, paid media and earned media.