We would like to thank our jury this year who had the challenging task of narrowing down and selecting the Award Winners:

Elijah Hasan

Elijah Hasan is an award-winning filmmaker, photographer, composer, and writer for over 25 years. He has emerged as one of the region’s most daring and innovative artists. His work knows no boundaries or genres. His films often employ experimental techniques that work to blend complex concepts with powerful, graceful storytelling. As a teaching artist, he has introduced young people to creative filmmaking, photography, and various multimedia disciplines. His hybrid artistic approaches to programming have resulted in transformative impacts on participants as well as their exhibition audiences.

Melissa Rue

Melissa Rue is a writer, producer, director and runs her own company, Green Creek Films LLC. She began her career in 2003 when she took classes at NW Film Center, and her first screening was in 2007. “The Land Between,” was an official selection for La Femme International Film Festival in L.A, and it won the Audience Award at 5th Avenue Cinema’s 2013 Visuals Festival. Melissa’s last film “Circles” won Best Dramatic Film and Best Supporting Actor at the 2015 Oregon Film Festival. She’s excited to be releasing two new films in 2019 – a short narrative, “Esperanza’s Turn,” and a feature documentary, “Live Out Loud.”

Ben Popp

Ben Popp is the Filmmaker Services Manager at the NW Film Center based in Portland. Here he oversees all of the regional programming, from the annual Northwest Filmmakers’ Festival to the year-round programming of Northwest Tracking, including overseeing a tour and filmmaker grant to boot. In addition to his curatorial job, Ben is also an award-winning independent stop-motion animator and experimental filmmaker whose work has screened in the Northwest Filmmakers Festival and exhibited nationally and internationally. He was a recipient of the 2013 Oregon Media Arts Fellowship. Ben has been programming for 11 years and filmmaking for 21 years.

Matt Meyer

Matt Meyer is an Associate Professor of Cinematic Arts at George Fox University in Newberg. He’s been teaching for 14 years, and doing sound editing and mixing for 25 years. Matt is preparing to release his first feature, “Changing Time”, a time travel movie about a high-school shooting which he filmed with a group of George Fox students. Matt also did the sound for “Colors Straight Up”, a documentary that was nominated for an Academy Award. One evening in film school Matt came around a corner and bumped into Steven Spielberg and George Lucas at which time he had to decide which one to talk to (he chose George).

Michael Bryan Hull

Michael Bryan Hull is a Portland-based artist and filmmaker. He is currently working as a designer for a company called Welocalize and has been doing so for the last 2 years. Michael directed his first short film titled “Daniel” in 2014. It has screened in numerous independent venues including The Clinton Street Theater, The Boathouse Microcinema, and the Littman Gallery. Since then, he has directed several music videos including “Hiking” by Portland-based duo There Is No Mountain, and has worked as a Director of Photography on Dustin Morrow’s latest film titled, “Blackpool”. Michael’s work has been written about in If You Leave Magazine, and Independent Music News.

Christina Dodge

Christina Dodge does freelance video production in the Greater Portland area. She won the Best Short Award in 2016 at the Oregon Independent Filmmakers Festival. Christina is also a producer of “Annex Podcast” based in Portland, and was the script supervisor for the film “Prodigy” (2018). She studied in the “Cinema in New York Program” through Portland State University.