BIFF Board of Directors
Vickery received the 2010 Moxie Award, the 2015 Berkshire Trendsetter Award and the 2016 Berkshire Magazine 25 Most Influential People Award. She is an active member in her community and has served on various boards and committees including Jacob’s Pillow, Tanglewood, Shakespeare and Company, IS183, Austen Riggs and Construct, Inc.
In 1975 Ronald Frohne was admitted to the German Bar and joined the international law firm Nörr, Stiefenhofer & Lutz in 1977, where he became a partner in 1980. Being resident in the Berlin and Munich offices of the law firm he specializes in national and international corporate and media law. On leave from 1984 to 1987 he held the position of a Managing Director at the KirchGroup, a major German entertainment company. In 1988 he was admitted as CPA („Wirtschaftsprüfer“). In 1991 Ronald Frohne was appointed Deputy Chairman at the East German radio and television broadcasting stations. He held this post until the end of 1992 when the East German radio and television broadcasting stations were amalgamated into the West German radio and television system. Since March 1997 Ronald Frohne has taught media law as an honorary professor at the Hochschule für Film und Fernsehen „Konrad Wolf“ in Potsdam-Babelsberg. He acted as Co-Chairman of Nörr Stiefenhofer Lutz from 1998-2004 and presently resides in New York as head of Nörr`s NY office. He sits on the board of several national and international companies.
In NY she portrayed Helen Keller in William Gibson’s “The Monday After the Miracle” directed by Arthur Penn at the Actor’s Studio,the Spoleto Festival, the Kennedy Center in Wash DC and on Broadway. Her performance won a Theatre World Award. Other theatre performances in NY include William Mastrosimones’ Extremities, Strinberg’s Miss Julie, productions of The Country Girl, The Miracle Worker, and Speaking in Tongues at the Roundabout Theatre, Laura in The Glass Menagerie, and Beautiful Bodies by Laura Cunningham. She has worked at the Williamstown Theatre Festival, the Longwharf, The Berkshire Theatre Festival, Shakespeare and Co. and the Westport Country Playhouse. In the Fall of 2012 she starred in the US premiere of Norwegian playwright Jon Fosses’ A Summer Day with Rattlestick Theatre at the Cherry Lane in NY.
As a director in the theatre she has done two productions of Michael Weller’s Moonchildren, Joan Ackermann’s “The Batting Cage” and an award winning production of Mastrisimone’s Extremities at BTF. Most recently she directed Lucy Thurber’s world premiere of Ashville for Rattlestick Theatre in NY which won an Obie Award in 2014 and Terrance McNally’s Frankie and Johnny in the Claire de Lune at BTF in 2015. She is on the faculty of the Theatre Department at Bard College at Simon’s Rock, has taught acting and directing at the Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute in association with NYU, and is a lifetime member of the Actor’s Studio.
Her films include Animal House, The Wanderers, A Small Circle of Friends, Raiders of the Lost Ark, Shoot the Moon, Cruising, Until September, Starman, Animal Behavior, The Glass Menagerie, Backfire, The End of the Line, Scrooged, The Sandlot, King of the Hill, Falling Sky, The Perfect Storm, The Basket, In the Bedroom, Malcolm X, Poster Boy, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, White Irish Drinkers and Bad Hurt. Her most recent film is based on Joan Anderson’s memoir “A Year By the Sea” and has won numerous awards at film festivals in 2016. It will be released in 2017.
In June of 2016 she wrote and directed her first film, based on Carson McCullers’ short story, A Tree, A Rock, A Cloud. It will be seen at film festivals in 2017 including the BIFF in June of 2017 and in Columbus, GA, NYC, Nyack, NY and Rome, Italy as part of a celebration of Carson McCuller’s 100th birthday in February of 2017.
On television she has been seen as Abra in the mini-series of Steinbeck’s East of Eden, as Christa Macauliffe in The Challenger, and in Secret Weapon, Voyage, All the Winter’s That Have Been, My Horrible Year, Rapture, November Christmas, Law and Order, and Bluebloods.
Karen studied textile and clothing design at the Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC when she was 17. In 2010 she received an honorary doctorate from FIT and the State University of NY for her design work with her company Karen Allen Fiber Arts in Great Barrington, MA where she presently has a design studio and store that represents dozens of textile and clothing designers from around the world that she admires.
Karen divides her time between western MA and NYC and between her work as an actor and director. She is an active Board member of the Berkshire International Film Festival and the Amazon Conservation Team. She has a 26 year old son, Nicholas, who is a professional chef.
In 1995, Harper rejoined the executive ranks at 20th Century Fox as President of Marketing and managed the campaigns for such films as INDEPENDENCE DAY, WAITING TO EXHALE, DR. DOOLITTLE and THE STAR WARS TRILOGY SPECIAL EDITION. He was named Vice Chairman of the studio in 2000 and then in 2004 was promoted to Vice Chairman of parent company, Fox Filmed Entertainment, where he had global strategic, creative and managerial responsibilities for all the Fox film divisions which included 20th Century Fox, Fox 2000, Fox Searchlight Pictures, Fox Atomic and 20th Century Fox Animation. Some of the films released during this time period include, STAR WARS EPISODE III, NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM, X-MEN: THE LAST STAND, ICE AGE: THE MELTDOWN and THE SIMPSONS MOVIE.
In 2007 he was named CEO and Chairman of the Fox partnered independent studio New Regency Productions (a production entity that has made and owns over 100 titles including such high profile Fox releases as FIGHT CLUB, ENTRAPMENT, MAN ON FIRE, DAREDEVIL and MR. AND MRS. SMITH). While there he contributed to the development, production and worldwide release of such films as ALVIN AND THE CHIPMUNKS, MARLEY AND ME, BRIDE WARS and KNIGHT AND DAY. After leaving New Regency in 2011, he remained on the Fox lot for 4 years and executive produced IN TIME, WHAT'S YOUR NUMBER, and DARKEST HOUR while continuing to provide strategic input to the office of the Chairman. His Featherstone Productions is currently in development on a feature film at 20th Century Fox. Harper serves on the Advisory Boards of the Department of Neurosurgery at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA as well as the Tom Sherak MS Hope Foundation. He has previously served as Chairman on the Board of Trustees of the Southern California Chapter of the National MS Society. As a former board member of World Neighbors he remains an active contributor and fund raiser for this Oklahoma based non-profit organization dedicated to helping third-world communities find lasting solutions to hunger, poverty and disease. He has been a member of the Executive Branch of the Academy of Motion Pictures, Arts and Sciences for more than 30 years.
Ten years ago, she and husband Gordon fell in love with an old farmhouse and created a home in the Berkshires. Continuing her passion for writing, Mary moved into performing her words. She has done two one-woman shows in the Berkshires and Sun Valley. "From Where I Sit" in 2013 and "Butter to the Edges" in 2016.
Mary lives in Stockbridge with her husband Gordon, and dogs, Rosie and Lola.
In 2017, Selke opened the luxury lodging destination 33 Main in her hometown of Lenox, distilling decades of expertise in travel and hospitality into a one-of-a-kind destination where visitors can experience her vision and products first-hand.
Selke, a Massachusetts Small Business Person of the Year winner and Author of Fresh American Spaces and has been a proud supporter of the BIFF since the beginning and joined the Board in 2013.
He was the first creative director of MTV, the last president of Hanna-Barbera Cartoons, and the founder of Frederator Studios and Next New Networks (acquired by YouTube). His productions include shows on Cartoon Network and Nickelodeon (Adventure Time, Dexter’s Laboratory, The Powerpuff Girls, The Fairly OddParents, ChalkZone, My Life as a Teenage Robot), Netflix (Castlevania), Amazon Prime (Costume Quest) and Cartoon Hangover (Bravest Warriors, Bee and PuppyCat [history’s most backed animation on Kickstarter]).
Fred’s on the board of directors of the Berkshire International Film Festival and Sawhorse Media, and was the first investor in Tumblr (acquired by Yahoo!). He’s received the Lifetime Achievement Medal from the American Institute of Graphic Arts and is in the Animation Magazine Hall of Fame.
He is CEO of Canvas Media Studios, a production studio and distributor for television, film and digital/social platforms. David is also a digital strategy consultant, transitioning brands and businesses into modern media companies by leveraging video strategy, content marketing and data driven storytelling across all platforms
In television, David has developed and produced programming for all television networks, and worked on hit series' that have won over 20 Emmy Awards and Nominations. He was a senior executive for Will Smith's Overbrook Entertainment and the groundbreaking Carsey Werner Company, where he developed projects including THAT 70S SHOW, 3RD ROCK FROM THE SUN and was an Executive Producer of GRACE UNDER FIRE.
After two years as an associate in the litigation department of the Fasken law firm in Toronto, Haythorne joined the World Bank in Washington, D.C. as Counsel in 1977. For four years, he assisted in the preparation and appraisal of Bank-funded projects in South Asia, East and West Africa, and in Central and South America and drafted and negotiated the Bank loan agreements which ensued as a result with the many countries in question. In 1981 he joined the corporate, commercial and banking department of the Tory law firm in Toronto. Four years later, he became the Founding and Managing Partner of Tory’s offices in London, England with a practice devoted to banking and finance, mergers and acquisitions and international projects.
Soon after the demise of the Soviet Union in 1991, Haythorne rejoined the World Bank as Senior Counsel to advise on legal reforms for former communist regimes in their fledgling efforts to transition to market economies. His practice then consisted primarily of advice on rule of law and governance initiatives, including on legislative and institutional reform agendas aimed - over time - at encouraging private sector-led growth. By 1998 and throughout the ensuing 10 years Haythorne’s practice expanded globally to include assessments of financial sectors, and advice on the legal aspects of water resource management, the establishment and operation of public private partnerships (PPPs) and consumer protection initiatives in commercial banking.
Haythorne retired from the World Bank as Lead Counsel in 2008. Returning soon thereafter as Legal Consultant to the Bank, he has since had assignments devoted to water resource management, consumer protection in financial services, privatizations of State-owned Enterprises, and PPPs in countries in Eastern Europe, the former Soviet Union, the Middle East, Sub-Saharan Africa and South-East Asia.
Haythorne serves on the Board of Close Encounters with Music in Great Barrington, Massachusetts and is a Governor of The Lenox Club of Lenox where he chairs its Constitution and Bylaws Committee. He has also been a Trustee of Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. In April 2019 he became a Naturalized Citizen of the USA.
Elissa is a past Co-President of the Casting Society of America. She divides her time between friends and family in New Marlborough and New York.
he also worked as the Dean of Students in the medical school and maintained a private psychotherapy practice. Currently a real estate investor and philanthropist, Dr. Smokler is the founder and president of the Nephcure Foundation, which
supports research and advocacy for glomerular (kidney) disease.
As an executive producer or producer, she has received 32 Primetime Emmy® Awards, 35 News and Documentary Emmys® and 42 George Foster Peabody Awards. During her tenure, HBO’s critically acclaimed documentaries won 26 Academy Awards®, including “A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness”, “Citizenfour” (2015), “Crisis Hotline: Veterans Press 1” (2015), “Saving Face” (2012), “Strangers No More” (2011), “Music By Prudence (2010), “Smile Pinki” (2009), “The Blood of Yingzhou District” (2007), “Born Into Brothels” (2005), “Chernobyl Heart” (2004), “Murder on a Sunday Morning” (2002), “King Gimp” (2000), “One Survivor Remembers” (1996), “I Am a Promise” (1994), “Educating Peter” (1993) and “You Don’t Have To Die” (1989). The series “Cinemax Reel Life” has featured a number of award-winning documentaries, including “Big Mama,” winner of the 2001 Academy Award® for Best Short Subject, “The Personals: Improvisations on Romance in the Golden Years” (1999) and “Breathing Lessons: The Life and Work of Mark O'Brien,” an Oscar® winner in 1997.
Sheila has been honored with numerous prestigious career achievement awards, including the 2018 Realscreen Legacy Award and the 2017 DOC NYC Lifetime Achievement Award. She is the recipient of the Governors Award from the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences and is a NYU Tisch School of the Arts Honoree. Other awards include: a Gotham Awards Tribute; an Emmy® Lifetime Achievement Award for her contributions to the art of the documentary, the first time the National Television Academy awarded a Lifetime Achievement recognition to a documentarian; and a Personal Peabody in recognition of her work and ongoing commitment to excellence. Women in Film presented Sheila with a Lucy Award for her outstanding achievements in advancing documentary filmmaking and the National Board of Review presented her with the Humanitarian Award for her contribution to the advancement of social reforms and the promotion of human welfare through film. Sheila has been inducted into Broadcasting & Cable’s Hall of Fame, and has garnered an IDA Career Achievement Award and the New York Women in Film & Television Muse Award for Outstanding Vision & Achievement. She won the first George Foster Peabody Award ever presented to a cable program for “She’s Nobody’s Baby,” which was produced with Ms. Magazine.
Sheila is a member of the Writers Guild of America, the Producers Guild of America and The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
She is the New York Times bestselling author of You Don’t Look Your Age… and Other Fairy Tales, published by Flatiron Books.
Sheila holds a BA from Barnard College and an MFA from Yale University School of Drama in Directing.
Pat served as Chairman of the NBCUniversal News Group. Prior to NBCUniversal, Pat was Executive Vice President at Time Warner Inc. Before joining Time Warner, Pat was the CEO of WebMD, President of the ABC Television Network, President of ABC Daytime, Senior Vice President of Programming and Production of Lifetime Television, and she has held senior positions with Home Box Office, culminating her tenure as Vice President of Business Affairs and Production.
Pat has been named multiple of times to Fortune’s “50 Most Powerful Women” list and received numerous awards including New York Women in Communications’ prestigious Matrix Awards. She was named to Mayor Bloomberg's Commission on Women's Issues.
She is committed to her non-profit board’s leadership: The Estee Lauder Foundation Board, The Public Theater where she is Vice Chair, Berkshire Film Festival where she is Chair and The Center for Talent Innovation where she is a board member and serving as interim CEO. She is a senior mentor in W.O.M.E.N. In America and a member of The Women’s Forum of New York, a by invitation community of preeminent New York women leaders.ry, in which roasted parts of sentences fly into your mouth.
Kate founded Morris House in 2002, an interior design and art and antiques resale business, with design projects in New York, the Berkshires, San Francisco and Philadelphia.
Born and raised in Washington, D.C., Kate and her husband Hans have two grown children, Mac and Lucy. They divide their time between New York, Stockbridge, and San Francisco. They actively engage in cultural and civic life when they are not relaxing with family and friends in the Berkshires.
In addition to her commitment to the Esplanade Association, Jeryl is a board member of the Boston Book Festival, a VIA Partner, and an advisory board member of Brigham and Woman’s Hospital Stepping Strong for Trauma Innovation Center and of the Charles River Watershed Association. Jeryl and her husband, Steve, have actively supported many other important community causes including the Berklee College of Music, Boston Medical Center, Hestia, Community Servings, UNICEF, and the Concussion Legacy Foundation.
Jeryl received her undergraduate degree from Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service. She started her career a a commodity futures broker and worked for a subsidiary of Continental Grain Company. She then moved to London where she built a financial futures and currency options operation for Paine Webber and was later hired by DLJ to establish their London currency options trading desk. Since leaving the financial markets to raise a family, Jeryl has been actively engaged with non-profit organizations. She is presently pursuing a master’s degree in Non-profit Management at Northeastern University.
Jeryl and Steve live in Boston and also have homes in Stockbridge and NYC.
Studio Two Principal Kevin Sprague is a strategic marketing consultant who works with organizations to create compelling methods of communicating, defining, and expressing their core values and products. His work is driven by a passion for creating opportunities and expansion through his deep interest in beautiful imagery, transparent language, and fundamental design. Kevin’s portfolio encompasses internet culture, photographic expression and systems, digital media production, artistic direction and institutional creative process development.
Logical, well considered architecture is at the root of Kevin’s process-driven development when developing brand systems, internet strategies, and communications plans. Informing this architecture is the creative spark—the element of intuition, experience and skill developed over a lifetime of creative output. Kevin draws no boundaries between his personal, commercial and artistic spaces—they each inform the other seamlessly. An outgoing advocate of creative process development, Kevin believes that any individual or organization can learn, develop and master the skill of bringing creativity to bear on the task at hand in effective, measurable ways.