North America Mentees and Mentors 2023


About the Rise Mentoring Programme

Our award-winning Rise Mentoring Programme is a coveted six month programme to support women working in, or aspiring to work in the media technology sector.

The 2023 Mentoring Programme sees a variety of experienced broadcast media technology sector industry leaders, at a diversity of levels of seniority, ready to offer expertise, knowledge and guidance to our female Mentees.

A special thank you goes to our industry sponsors for 2023/24 as the programme is only made possible due their generous support.


Apply to join the global 2024 cohort of the Rise Mentoring Programme 


North America Mentees 2023



Aleah Sigler is a passionate Social Media and Administrative professional for a publisher of community newspapers. She excels in photography, building an online presence, and video editing. She graduated from The University of Riverside, California with a degree in Media and Cultural Studies.

MENTOR: Cecelia Gordon, Vice President, Distribution, Starz



Amy Bloom is an award-winning Producer and Co-Owner of the production company Practical Magic. Over her career she has managed some of the most technologically advanced museum installations and VR experiences in the world, shot everything from cinematic documentaries to quirky indies, and overseen dozens of hours of television programming.

MENTOR: Sandy Nasseri, CEO & Founder, Melrose Inc.



Candice Lewis is a digital media producer from Los Angeles, CA. She specializes in content creation, most recently working as an associate director and producer at the Sundance Institute. Candice graduated cum laude from Loyola Marymount University where she holds a BA in Television Production.

MENTOR: Brooke Meredith, Vice President Client Partnerships, AirCards



Carin is a result-driven branding professional with 8 years of experience and a passion for brand strategy, project management and relationships building. She has worked in the entertainment, fashion and lifestyle industries through a combination of family business practice and real world experience. Carin obtained her International MBA from IE Business School with a concentration in marketing and management.

MENTOR: Julie Miller, Freelance



A skilled, versatile IT professional with over 13 years of experience supporting leaders as a technical partner and collaborator. She joined Warner Bros. Discovery in 2020 as a Sr. Applications Developer, gained her MBA in 2022 and aspires to lead in a greater capacity. Her hobbies include baking and singing.

MENTOR: Alexis Martinez, Systems and Tooling Manager, Localization Operations, Amazon Studios



Daniella Singh is the Learning Partner Manager for CXCS at Avid Technology Inc. She manages Avid’s relationship with over 300 institutions in 11 countries. While relatively new to the media industry, she has leveraged her business acumen developed in healthcare administration and successfully applied it to Media Education.

MENTOR: Vickie Claiborne, Training Manager- Americas, Disguise



Divya is a highly skilled and experienced Technical Project Manager and Scrum Master who brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to every project undertaken, with over 6 years of experience managing software development, IT, infrastructure, and business process improvement projects. She holds certifications as a Certified Scrum Master (CSM) and Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP), and has a strong understanding of agile frameworks. She has successfully led cross-functional teams through the full project lifecycle and has a track record of delivering exceptional results. With a Master's degree in Engineering Management and excellent analytical, problem-solving, communication, and presentation skills, she is well-equipped to make a positive impact in any team.

MENTOR: Lauren de la Fuente, Head of Marketing and Communications, Meta



Eileen is a UX Researcher at Ross Video, she uses qualitative and quantitative methods to produce actionable, and data-driven recommendations. She is passionate about user-centered design, accessibility and evangelizing that “you ≠ user”. Eileen is proud to be a part of the next generation of women in the technology industry.

MENTOR: Magda Jagucka, WW Localization Operations, Deluxe SVP



Italian Localization PM in love with audiovisual, translation, volleyball, and sustainability: after graduating as a translator, my academic and professional path lead me to Spain, Australia, Argentina, Ireland, UK and ended up in California to attend a “Localization Management Program”. Now I work at Deluxe, where the fun never ends!

MENTOR: Allison Martin-Fong, Director, Content Planning, BBC Studios



Jennifer is a post production supervisor that has been working in scripted television for the last five years. She is looking to bring her skills and knowledge to a studio position and expand and grow her career and network with the help of an experienced mentor and fellow peers.

MENTOR: Katie Fellion, Business Development Manager, Post Production, Netflix



Inquisitive to the core, Julie Bowles connects with the ability broadcasting has to share knowledge, art, and entertainment with the world. Julie is a broadcast engineer in Nashville, Tnenessee, working in a studio that supports radio and music performance. She graduated from Western K entucky University and loves what she does.

MENTOR: Christine Du Vall, Solutions Architect - North America, Ross Video



Kathy is currently the Scripting Quality Manager for Deluxe Media where she oversees quality control for the global department. She joined Deluxe in 2014 as an English Editor in its Theatrical Scripting unit. Since then, she has trained editors in Scripting across global offices, standardized processes and workflows, and set best practices for the department.

MENTOR: Hilary Roschke, VP of Strategic Operations, SDVI



Lynsey is the Manager of Recurring Revenue at Ross Video. Relishing her strong relationship building as well as warm personality, Lynsey has been working in the Media, Entertainment and Technology sector for much of her professional career thus far. She enjoys building, establishing, and maintaining relationships, internally and externally. Now, successfully creating and launching her global SLA team, she now looks to greater influence corporate communications and processes to allow her team to be more efficient enabling a drive for more revenue. In her spare time, you will see her on a volleyball court or on the golf course!

MENTOR: Candice Edwards, Global Head Industry Go to Market, Media & Entertainment, Salesforce



At work, Mackenzie is an APM for a digital advertising SaaS company. In her life, she is the bubbly supporting character who flits around chatting with everyone. She currently lives in San Francisco with her cousin/best friend and their cat where she spends her free time reading, painting, and sparking joy.

MENTOR: Liz Guenther, Post Production Audio Localization Executive, Deluxe



After graduating from UCLA with a major in English and a minor in Film, Madison began her career working with Academy Award-winning director James Moll on a documentary project as well as assisting Paul Walker's production company and gained valuable experience in the industry. She continued to pursue her passion for film and tv, working as a music coordinator at DreamWorks TV on shows such as King Julien and Dragons. After DreamWorks, she continued to work in music at a licensing boutique which represents artists from all over the world and placed music in many films, television shows and commercials. Over the last 3 years, she has transitioned into film editing and has worked on several documentaries, developing her skills and honing her craft, and continuing to pursue her passion for storytelling and bringing compelling narratives to life on screen.

MENTOR: Amy McGrath, TV/Film Editor



Megan McEwen is a Hardware Developer currently working with Ross Video’s Camera Motion Systems team, developing technology for their robotic camera solutions. Megan is also an accomplished STEM volunteer, promoting STEM education through multiple community organizations. Recently, Megan was named the 2022 Young Person of the Year by the IABM.

MENTOR: Morgan Prygrocki, Sr. Strategic Development Manager, Adobe



Melissa is a very eager learner and wants to continue to grow in this field with the right mentor to help her get there. She is a hard worker and will always give 110% to anything she is doing.

MENTOR: Terri Davies, President, Trusted Partner Network (TPN), Motion Picture Association



Meryl Hathaway is a lifelong creative, with over 15 years as a professional performer. Born and raised in the Maryland suburbs of DC, she earned her BA in Communications from The Ohio State University and is a Nationally Board Certified Health & Wellness Coach. Alongside her career in commercials, television and film, Meryl also wrote and produced her own creative content and freelanced in many different industries.

MENTOR: Lori Schwartz, CEO & Principal, Curator of Experiences, Storytech



Filmmaker, photographer, songwriter, and teacher Michelle DeLateur has been tethered to the media world ever since playing with VHS tapes. Michelle is currently a contributor for ProVideo Coalition and The Knockturnal. When she’s not writing or editing a project, she can be found experimenting with lenses or on the river fly-fishing.

MENTOR: ErinRose Widner, Global Head of Business Strategy, Emerging and Creative Technologies, Verizon



Nicole, a New England native now living in the Seattle area, is a lover of languages, culture, and stories. She is a professional writer currently working in the media industry. In working within accessibility and localization, she helps deliver content to people all around the world.

MENTOR: Carolyn Crawford, Media Strategic Consultant, Crawford Media LLC



Savannah Lew is an assistant video editor based in Los Angeles, California, and graduated from Chapman University. Raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Savannah’s life experiences have inspired and shaped her passion to combine new media technology with video editing on projects such as interactive, animation, and virtual reality.

MENTOR: En Kelly, Senior Engineering Program Manager, Apple, Inc.



Tiff Pua (she/her) is an Emmy-winning producer and director with technical and content production expertise in live broadcast and client-based commercial video production. Her experience includes broadcast feature and TV series creation, multi-camera directing, strategic marketing, media project management, and event planning for web, video, print, and social media.

MENTOR: Jane Sung, COO, Cinedeck



Graduated in Multimedia Design, Veronica has 17 years of experience working as a Video Editor. Over this period, she has worked with documentaries, music videos, social media content, and educational content for clients such as Nike, the Government of Rio de Janeiro for the 2016 Olympics Games and Age of Learning.

MENTOR: Monica Daniel, TV/Film Editor



Victoria Taylor lives in Los Angeles with her husband and son. After receiving MA in Film and Media Production in 2017 she started working as DIT on sets and later transitioned into a role of an assistant editor. She currently works as a Finishing Assistant Editor at Trailer Park Group.

MENTOR: JoAnne Kim, Owner & Chief Consultant, JoJiKi Productions



Whitney Larkins is a graduate of the University of North Texas with a degree in Radio/TV/Film and a minor in Spanish. She is also a graduate of Florida International University with a Masters of Liberal Studies degree. Currently, she works for a multinational media company working with metadata. She is a film enthusiast who currently resides in the Dallas, Texas area.

MENTOR: Geetanjali Dogra Mehta, Events & Content Manager, Magnifi


North America Mentors 2023



Alexis Martinez is a media and entertainment technology professional based in Santa Monica, CA specializing in content localization. They currently manage systems and tooling for Amazon Studios’ Global Content Localization team where they collaborate with partners across the studio and Prime Video to bring movies and series to global audiences.

MENTEE: Chisom Ohiagu, Sr. Applications Developer, Warner Bros. Discovery



Allison is a Global Operations executive at BBC Studios Americas, leading a team that oversees the creation and management of all descriptive metadata, artwork, and avails deliveries for North America. She is a RISE alumni and knows all too well that the details matter and bad metadata should never happen to good people.

MENTEE: Francesca Tantussi, Subtitling Project Manager, Deluxe Media



Amy McGrath is an established Film and Television editor in Los Angeles. Her most recent works include Netflix's feature film "Dog Gone" directed by Stephen Herek and Jerry Bruckheimer's series for CBS "Fire Country". Her versatile resume includes feature films that premiered at Tribeca Film Festival and SXSW. She is currently represented by Innovative Artists.

MENTEE: Madison McCabe, Assistant Film Editor



Brooke Meredith is an award-winning cross-channel marketing executive with experience in innovation, product development, and scaling immersive content (written, video, audio, experiential, and augmented reality) across platforms. Over the course of her career, she has worked with a number of notable clients, including Verizon, Saks, Walmart, Diageo, American Express, Visa, HBO, and PWC. Brooke joined Aircards in 2022 as the Vice President of Client Partnerships, joining an incredible team to spearhead projects that deliver interactive, impactful and immersive experiences that leverage augmented reality for marketing, advertising, and business to business clients. Before joining Aircards, Brooke led Creative & Business Development and Innovation at RYOT, Yahoo/ Verizon Media's in-house branded content studio, where she delivered custom marketing executions for partners in the CPG, Automotive, Beauty, Retail, Pharmaceutical, and Finance industries. In addition Brooke has experience spearheading partnerships with technology platforms, publishers, social media platforms, and web-developers. She is recognized as an industry expert and served on panels discussing the importance of such topics as augmented reality, audio and podcasting, and long and short form video within a brands story. In addition, Brooke spent the first 16 years of her career developing, selling, casting and producing non-fiction programming for broadcast, cable and streaming platforms. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Theater Studies from Emory University and currently, lives in Brooklyn with her husband and 4 year old daughter (and one more on the way), where they love to make ice cream from scratch, have dance parties, and test out Brooke's arts and crafts abilities."

MENTEE: Candice Lewis, Digital Media Producer




Candice has spent the better part of her career at the intersection of telecommunications, media and technology, expanding her skills to become a trusted advisor in enterprise digital transformation. Her teams focus on driving accelerated growth both direct and through the partner ecosystem channel around cloud based technologies centered on the customer/subscriber. As a veteran in the OTT video industry, she specializes in premium content platform strategy, technology platforms, monetization models, distribution, and data insights to help businesses launch radical streaming experiences, engage and retain their audience, and accelerate their revenue and market growth goals. Candice is most gratified when strategizing with partners, customers, and their teams as they develop disruptive products and services to future proof and evolve their businesses. She has helped launch D2C products for the world’s largest media companies including Disney, Fox, Sony, Warner Bros., Red Bull, and Univision."

MENTEE: Lynsey Reesor, Manager, Renewal and Subscription Sales, Ross Video



Versatile, financially-astute Senior Executive with 20+ years experience across multiple industries including media, technology, telecommunications, consulting services and banking in mid-sized to Fortune 100 companies. Innovative, critical thinker with proven success driving long-term growth through pioneering product/programming development initiatives, content acquisition, and strategic partnerships. Passionate leader skilled at building, motivating, and facilitating talented, cross-functional teams and developing effective leaders. Known as a persuasive communicator, an accomplished negotiator and collaborative business partner. Expertise encompasses start-ups, turnarounds, restructurings and high-growth settings. First direct-broadcast satellite company executive to earn CABLEFAX Magazine's Most Powerful Women in Cable (2013).

MENTEE: Nicole Porcello, Project Coordinator, (previously at) Deluxe Media



Cecelia Gordon joined Starz in August 2017 as Senior Director, Revenue Marketing on the Affiliate Sales & Marketing Team. She was promoted to Vice President, Distribution in April 2020. Cecelia is responsible for securing and executing on revenue and subscriber growth strategies with MVPDs through carriage renewals, multi-tactical consumer marketing campaigns and affiliate sales channel programs.

MENTEE: Aleah Sigler, Social Media Coordinator and Administrative Assistant, Gold Country Media



Christine DuVall has held positions across the broadcast video spectrum since 2006. From operations and editing, to engineering and systems design, to producing and equipment sales, Christine's impact on the industry is experienced by many and matched by few. In her role as Solutions Architect at Ross Video, Christine has been advising high profile clients and broadcasters in mission critical applications large and small. She looks forward to paying back her years of media experience as a gift to Rise."

MENTEE: Julie Bowles, Studio Engineer, Camel City Sound Inc.



En is an Engineering Program Manager leading a team of technical creatives, user researchers, and technical project managers within the Technology Development Group at Apple, Inc. A few of the shipping technologies En has supported include ARKit, RealityKit, and Reality Composer -- enabling augmented reality experiences for iPhone and iPad devices around the world. Prior to coming to Apple, En worked with Microsoft as a producer shipping Microsoft HoloLens, one of the world's first wearable Augmented Reality computers."

MENTEE: Savannah Lew, Assistant Video Editor, Freelance




ErinRose Widner has been a leader in the M&E and technology space for over twenty years, creating Fortune500 transformational partnerships. She is the Global Head of Business Strategy for Emerging & Creative Technologies, M&E for Verizon. She also serves on the board of Rise—supporting gender diversity across media technology.

MENTEE: Michelle DeLateur, Video Production Manager, Social Media Manager, and Media Arts Teacher, Sun Valley Community School



With experience spanning 15+ years in customer service and sales across various sectors such as education, media, technology, and hospitality, I have a passion for customer service and client engagement. Writing is my catharsis; I freelance as a Social Media Manager, website content writer, and run personal Blog and cooking websites. Adaptability and a hunger to learn and explore motivate me.

MENTEE: Whitney Larkins, OTT Production Associate, Red Bee Media



Hilary Roschke is the VP of Strategic Operations at SDVI Corporation and Board Chair of the North American chapter of Rise. With extensive experience in technology-focused operational and strategic roles in the media industry, she excels in optimizing complex ecosystems and driving major transformation initiatives. Hilary's expertise also extends to business management, guiding organizations through critical milestones such as re-branding, re-organization, and large-scale acquisitions. As a passionate advocate for gender diversity, she collaborates with Rise to foster a supportive community and to provide mentorship and education to its members.

MENTEE: Kathy Correia, Scripting Manager, Quality, Deluxe Media



Jane Sung, COO at Cinedeck since 2010, excels in improving video production workflows. With expertise in distributed workflows, she led Cinedeck's shift to software-only and cloud-based solutions. Self-taught, she impresses with extensive knowledge of the broadcast industry. Jane's leadership transformed Cinedeck, inspiring and supporting her team while driving innovation and efficiency.

MENTEE: Tiff Pua, Instructor, TV & Video Production / Producer & Director, Milwaukee Area Technical College / Milwaukee PBS



Television and feature production technologist with an extensive track record in media and entertainment having worked in major Hollywood projects like Dune and Rings of Power. Most recently leading the Production Technology team at Amazon Studios, JoAnne's experience in post production as an engineer, editor, and technology executive includes tenures with 20th Century Fox, Legendary Entertainment, Warner Bros., Comcast NBCUniversal, Sony Pictures, etc. Also an expert in production facility infrastructure and management, studio ops, and asset management innovation.

MENTEE: Victoria Taylor, Finishing Assistant Editor, Trailer Park Group



Julie Miller has been working in marketing communications for three decades. She has led PR and content for global enterprises and small companies, moving between in-house and consulting roles at Digital Domain, Netflix, Avid, Deluxe and others, and contributing to AWS, AJA, Autodesk, Telestream and more through agencies RazPR and HighRez.

MENTEE: Carin Mazaira, Marketing Manager, disguise



Katie Fellion’s career has been shaped by the intersection of technology and creativity. In 2009, she co-founded Light Iron, a post production facility that trail blazed the film to digital transition and which was later acquired by Panavision. Currently, she leads a business development team at Netflix that executes on strategic opportunities across the global production ecosystem. She is a North American board member for RISE as well as a member of the Producers Guild of America.

MENTEE: Jennifer Bohnert, Post Production Supervisor, Freelance



Lauren de la Fuente currently leads marketing and communications for the Telecom Infra Project OpenWiFi initiative at Meta. OpenWiFi is a community-developed, disaggregated Wi-Fi software solution. She has held leadership roles at Nike, MTV, NBCU and Boingo, and consults for leading TMT companies through her Pearl Street Marketing consultancy.

MENTEE: Divya Joshi, Technical Project Manager, Deluxe Media Inc



Liz is a So Cal native and has been part of the Rise NA program since its launch in 2020. Her background is rooted in audio production and has a successful career overseeing a team supporting the end to end localization needs of Deluxe’s studio clientele.

MENTEE: Mackenzie Nicoli, Associate Product Manager, iPromote



LORI H. SCHWARTZ is a true technology catalyst (‘Tech Cat’). As a leading advisor and speaker in marketing and tech innovation, Lori collaborates with executives of multiple brands, tech, and content companies to ensure their understanding of emerging content models. Los Angeles-based, Lori is a CNN Technology contributor. Lori’s StoryTech initiative facilitates communication between storytellers and technology companies. StoryTech's trends briefings, event curation and show floor tour programs have become well known globally through work @CES, @NAB, and @IBC. Previously Lori was a Governor for the Television Academy’s Emerging Media Peer Group, driving thought leadership for the future of interactive media. She was Chief Technology Catalyst for McCann Worldgroup, North America where she drove tech and content innovation and was the key principle to launching the highly regarded IPGLAB where she facilitated emerging media upfronts for Microsoft, Intel, General Motors, Nestlé, and Sony. She has been profiled as one of the “30 Executives Shaping the Evolution of Media and Technology” by Variety and “100 People to Have Lunch With” by MediaPost Publications. An active spokesperson, Lori launched Digital Hollywood’s ‘Women’s Entertainment and Technology Mentor Program’ and is a recipient of the Lucy Hood Digerati Award for her contributions to the Television Academy. She is one of the key principals that helped launch Hollywood’s Infinity Festival, a yearly event focused on storytelling enabled by technology.

MENTEE: Meryl Hathaway, Account Manager, Deluxe On Demand, Fulfillment, Deluxe



Magda Jagucka is a localization professional with over 20 years of experience in the audio visual localization industry. She holds degrees in psycholinguistics and bilingual translation. Magda has always been fascinated by languages and the importance of communication and cultural awareness. She spent several years in the UK and Canada in a variety of client-focused and operational roles. She currently oversees WW Localization operations at Deluxe Media, and is based in Los Angeles.

MENTEE: Eileen Kennedy-MacDonald, UX Researcher, Ross Video Ltd



Monica is a Freelance Editor in Television and Independent Features. She has worked on projects in several editing genres for such networks and companies as BBC America, SyFy, Starz, Miramax, E!, LOGO, Oxygen, Fearnet, Style, and G4TV.

MENTEE: Veronica Dantas Colagrande, Video Editor, Self-Employed



Morgan Prygrocki is a Sr. Strategic Development Manager at Adobe looking after Hollywood post-production video workflows. She has spent the bulk of her career working in high-end camera technology & virtual production solutions, and has been supporting productions ranging from major league sports broadcasts to award-winning films & and commercial productions over the last 15 years.

MENTEE: Megan McEwen, Hardware Developer, Ross Video Ltd



Sandy Nasseri is the President and Co-Founder of MelroseINC, a WOSB and WBENC certified woman-owned business. In 2003, Sandy opened MelroseMAC to meet the accelerating needs in the media, technology sector. She understood the business challenges facing the entertainment marketplace and launched a company that would meet those needs. In less than one year’s time, MelroseMAC’s second location was opened in Burbank to accommodate the immediate needs of major studios. Today, MelroseINC has three distinct divisions: MelroseMAC, our experience centers; MelroseSRC, our national procurement and distribution arm; and MelroseTEC, our systems integrations group that designs end-to-end technology solutions. Sandy’s passion, intuition, and commitment to excellence have fueled her success as a leader of a multi-million- dollar company that is respected by its partners and customers, loved by its employees, and seen as unique in an industry where standing out is nearly impossible. Known as the high-energy CEO, Sandy leads from the bottom up. Her organization has grown to over 80 employees in the last 20 years. And still, her top priority is empowering her teams. Sandy has personally taken on tasks from every position at MelroseINC—including the warehouse staffers—to understand how to support them. “There’s nothing that differentiates one company from another but the people and culture,” Sandy says, proud of the people-centric culture at MelroseINC. “We offer a thriving work environment that encourages professional growth. We help our employees improve their skills, which ultimately nurtures their passion for their work.” As the enterprise side of MelroseINC continues expanding to a myriad of industries, Sandy takes the time to understand each client’s unique needs. She’s a former post production pro who understands all the technical aspects of video footage. Every new enterprise client brings fresh insights on the power of video footage in every industry—from education and healthcare to cannabis and the military. Sandy lives and works with a strong sense of empathy for others, including children, military veterans, and animals. She’s an advisory board member on The Book Foundation, providing books and e-readers to underserved communities. Sandy also serves as an advisory board member of the Avid Channel Board and Apple Reseller board.

MENTEE: Amy Bloom, Owner/Producer, Practical Magic



Terri Davies is President of the Motion Picture Association’s Trusted Partner Network. Davies started her career in post production in London before moving to Los Angeles with Sony Pictures where she was Executive Vice President, Business Operations, Worldwide Product Fulfillment. Davies serves on various boards and is also a mentor at the USC Marshall Business School.

MENTEE: Melissa Navas Ruiz, Manager, Warner Bros Discovery



Vickie Claiborne is a lighting & digital media designer, programmer, and instructor, whose career spans 25 years and has included roles at High End Systems, PRG, and now with disguise as Training Manager for the Americas. She is also the author of Media Servers for Lighting Programmers and is a frequent contributor to industry magazines.

MENTEE: Daniella Singh, Program Manager, Avid Technology, Inc.


Become a Rise Member

Membership to Rise is free and is open to everyone working across, or aspiring to work in, the broadcast and media technology sector.

As part of our community, you will be invited to all of our networking events / conferences / panels, as well as be asked to nominate your colleagues in our annual Rise Awards.

Each member is invited to apply for our annual Mentoring Programme and we are always looking for volunteers for our Rise Up Academy programme and for contributors to our reports too.

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