NYWIFT 2022 Finance Institute


Welcome to the NYWIFT 2022 Finance Institute! 

Join us for this three-part virtual finance series to refine your business strategies.

Gain fresh insights from some of today’s leading experts in the industry and position your projects for optimum success. Hear from industry professionals who have successfully funded their projects, incorporated their businesses, and even learn about how to file taxes under your new business. During this three-part finance institute, panelists will provide insider perspectives and frank advice on what it takes to get your business started.


For NYWIFT Members: $20 per day; or $50 for a 3-day package 
For Non-members: $40 per day; or $100 for a 3-day package

NYWIFT Gold, Platinum, and Leadership Members attend for free!
(Discount is applied after login)

Become a member today to receive discounted access: email membership@nywift.org to join!

New York Women in Film & Television is a non-profit professional association dedicated to helping women reach the highest levels of creative achievement in television, film and media. In addition to providing services to members, NYWIFT plays a vital role in recognizing the contributions of women in media. To learn more about NYWIFT and our programs, please visit www.nywift.org

The NYWIFT 2022 Finance Institute is brought to you by Signature Bank



Day 1: Finance for Your Project


Welcome Address

NYWIFT Board President Jamie Zelermyer


Welcome and Presentation

Peter Marra (Group Director – Senior Vice President, Signature Bank)


Keynote Speaker

Melissa Silverstein (Founder/Publisher, Women and Hollywood)


New York Women in Film & Television (NYWIFT) is not only an organization that brings filmmakers together – it also allows filmmakers to use our resources to fund their next project. This panel will focus on three NYWIFT members who have successfully funded their project through our NYWIFT Fiscal Sponsorship program. Learn about how these filmmakers utilized their sponsorship to gain success and how you can be part of our program.

NYWIFT’s fiscal sponsorship program allows filmmakers to access foundation and government grant funding that may only be accessible to nonprofit organizations or fiscally sponsored projects. It also provides the incentive to donors that their contribution to the project is a charitable deduction for income tax purposes. This program does not fund film projects. Instead, NYWIFT acts as a nonprofit umbrella organization for filmmakers and videomakers who are seeking to raise funds and require nonprofit status to do so. Funds raised by project directors is directed to NYWIFT who administers and disburses those funds back to project directors. There is no application fee. NYWIFT takes an administrative fee of 7% for any funds raised through the fiscal sponsorship program.

This discussion will include Jessica Beshir, Moira Griffin, and Trevite Willis, moderated by NYWIFT Director of Artists’ Programs & Finance Easmanie Michel


Learn More & Register for Day 1



Day 2: Finance for Yourself


Welcome and Presentation

Fioldaliza “Fio” Vidal (Associate Group Director – Vice President, Signature Bank)


Keynote Speaker

Suzanne C. de Janasz, PhD (Professor of Management and Conflict Analysis & Resolution, George Mason University)


This session on taxes will review the business structures available to filmmakers/actors, contrasting the advantages and disadvantages of operating as a Corporation, an LLC and or as a sole proprietor; concepts in tax planning, including some particular to filmmakers; and retirement plans available. Instructed by Certified Public Accountant, Nancy L. Adams.

Certified Financial Planners Gail Linn and William Fischer at Fortis Lux Financial will inform you about the key concepts you need to consider when it comes to saving for retirement, protection strategies, business transition, estate planning, and more. They will clarify some of the more confusing financial issues we face every day and help you focus your efforts on your goals. The presentation will also cover tax savings strategies.


Learn More & Register for Day 2



Day 3: Finance for Your Business


Welcome and Presentation

Kristina Kozikott (Associate Group Director – VP | Commercial and Private Banking, Signature Bank)


Keynote Speaker

S. Mona Sinha (CEO and Founder of The Insight Circle Fund)

Presentation: eMinutes 

Erika Easter (Attorney, eMinutes)

Let’s talk about incorporating your business. You have the idea, now you need to protect your idea. But where to start? Industry expert eMinutes attorney Erika Easter explains how to incorporate your new business and why it’s important. 


You have gone through all the steps to open your business. What is next? How do you influence a community? We speak with experts about running your business and how they work to gain clients. In discussion with Carolyn Hepburn (Motto Pictures), Maria C. Miles (Entertainment Attorney), and Kavery Kaul (riverfilms). Moderated by Alexis Fish


Closing Keynote Speaker

Shannon Nash (Attorney, CPA, and Chief Financial Officer at Wing)


Learn More & Register for Day 3


The NYWIFT 2022 Finance Institute is brought to you by