cascadia international womens film festival board of directors advisory

Cheryl Crooks

Executive Director
She is a professional photographer & writer with a studio in Bellingham. Cheryl began her career as a journalist & arts critic in Phoenix & was selected as a critic fellow of the O’Neill Theatre Institute. Cheryl then wrote for TIME Magazine, becoming the magazine’s West Coast medical reporter. Since moving to Bellingham, she has served on a number of arts & community boards, including the Mount Baker Theatre, the Bellingham Festival of Music, the Campaign for the Arts, and Western Washington University’s College of Fine and Performing Arts.
cascadia international womens film festival board of directors advisory

Amy McIlvaine

Acting President of the Board & Treasurer
Amy moved to Bellingham in 1994 after working in Chicago and New York in institutional fixed income sales. She was employed as a certified financial planner until 2012, when she returned to school to complete a certificate in sustainable food and agriculture. Amy currently operates The Dahlquist Kitchen in downtown Bellingham, which serves as a commissary kitchen for local food entrepreneurs. Amy has served on numerous boards in Bellingham over the past 20 years, and she is currently a member of Sustainable Connections board.
cascadia international womens film festival board of directors advisory

Sheila Goodwin

Actress & Board Member
Sheila Goodwin has been a professional actress for 40 years, working in theater and television. She has guest starred in episodic TV and movies of the week, most notably with Donald Sutherland in Behind the Mask and as Margaret Scully in The X-Files.  She also is a psychotherapist with a practice in Bellingham.  She is married to Bob Goodwin and has two sons, Jesse and Matthew.  She is an avid reader and equestrian.
cascadia international womens film festival board of directors advisory

Sam Ho

Film Historian & Board Member
Sam Ho is a curator, researcher, teacher, writer and critic who specializes in the study of Hong Kong cinema and has written extensively and curated programs on various aspects of cinema, including films from China, the United States and Europe. Sam has served as juror, media panelist or advisor for numerous arts organizations, such as the National Endowment for the Arts; Texas Commission on the Arts; the Cultural Arts Council of Houston/Harris County, Texas;
and the Hong Kong Arts Development Council.
cascadia international womens film festival board of directors advisory

Nisha Bhatt

Visual/Web Designer & Board Member
Nisha Bhatt is a freelance visual artist and web designer who moved to Bellingham in 2014 from Austin, Texas. Bhatt worked as a marketing/pr & graphics intern for the Austin Film Festival and as a branding & graphics designer for the South Asian Film Festival in Dallas-Fort Worth. Prior to launching her own design business, she was the design lead and marketing specialist for POS-X and the visual designer for Victory Dog Design.
cascadia international womens film festival board of directors advisory

Mary Erickson

Professor & Board Member
Dr. Mary Erickson has worked in publicity, production, distribution and education in the arts and film. She is currently visiting assistant professor of communication studies at Western Washington University, where her academic research focuses on regional and independent film, film distribution and marketing, global media and cultural policy. Mary is also associate editor for Media Inc., a trade magazine for the film and media production industry in the Pacific Northwest.

John McGarrity

Financial Manager & Board Member
John McGarrity, president of Value Management Corporation, has more than 40 years of development and financial management experience, including for the New York City Transit Authority and Tricontinental Films. He organized film festivals in the 1970s in Portland, Oregon and New York City, booked new art films for Sunset Cinema, and was a founding member of the Whatcom Film Association.
cascadia international womens film festival board of directors advisory

Megan Taylor

Board Member
Megan Taylor moved to Bellingham in 2010, retiring after a 30-year career in California working on legislative policy, issues management and media relations. In Bellingham, Taylor has served as chair of the Community Advisory Board to the Dean of the College of Fine and Performing Arts, Western Washington University; and president of her neighborhood association.
cascadia international womens film festival board of directors advisory

Andy Clay

CEO of Clay Senior Management, Filmmaker,
& Board Member
Andy Leebron-Clay, CEO of Clay Senior Management, is an advanced practice registered nurse and holds advanced degrees in fine arts and community development. She is a graduate of Vancouver Film School’s program in documentary film making, and two of her documentaries have been shown in festivals in Vermont and Washington. She has served on numerous boards including Whidbey Island Writers Association, Whatcom Humane Society, Sustainable Connections, Harvey Mudd College and ReSources.
team board of directors randi axelsson cascadia international womens film festival board member

Randi Axelsson

Board Member
Randi Axelsson was born in Hollywood, CA. and raised in the San Fernando Valley- a Valley Girl. She spent two years at Pepperdine University in Malibu where she fell in love with theater. She graduated from the University of California Santa Barbara with a Theater Arts degree.  In 1990, she moved to Bellingham with her two children and began to make a name for herself in marketing and sales. She is currently the Director of Sales & Marketing at Holiday Inn & Suites-Bellingham Airport.  Randi also serves on the Advisory Committee for Whatcom Community College’s Hospitality and Tourism Department and is an ambassador to the Bellingham/Whatcom Chamber of Commerce & Industry.
CASCADIA International Women's Film Festival Jeff Purdue Board Team

Jeff Purdue

Board Member
Jeff Purdue is Associate Professor at Western Washington University Libraries, where he is the Learning Commons and Media Librarian.  In addition to his work in the library, he teaches film classes in the Art History department at Western, focusing on Asian cinema and the study of narrative.  For seven years, he curated the Masters of Japanese Cinema film series at Pickford Film Center in Bellingham, Washington.  During that time, nearly 70 films were screened from dozens of directors.  He currently curates the Masters of Asian Cinema series, also at PFC, which features a mixture of recent and classic titles from across Asia.


Polly Miller– Founder, Creative Director, & Marketing Guru

Everett Aison– Director, Screenwriter, & Co-founder of SVA’s Film School

Mel Damski– Director, Emmy & Oscar Nominee

Susie Purves– Executive Director, Pickford Film Center

Bob Goodwin– Executive Producer, Director, & Emmy Nominee

Barbara Vz Howard– Legislation & Political Policy Director

Max Kaiser– Director, Founder of Hand Crank Films

Maria McLeod– Author, Professor, & Media Specialist

Michael Petryni– Screenwriter & Producer

Kit Spicer– Dean, College of Fine & Performing Arts, Western Washington University

F. Lee Van Horn– Behavioral Scientist & Management Consultant

Emily Weiner– Grant Writer, Former Journalist

Sturgis Robinson– Former President & CEO, Prescott College