About the Louisville Film Arts Institute

The Louisville Film Arts Institute, LIFF’s 501(c)(3) non-profit parent, was created to promote and celebrate film arts in Kentucky. We have partnered with the Governor’s Office on a variety of year round initiatives, which will be funded by the festival’s proceeds, to expand educational and economic opportunities in Louisville and around the Commonwealth.

A key mission of LFAI is to support magnet programs for the film arts at Kentucky public high schools. Pilot programs at Ballard, Pleasure Ridge Park, and Fern Creek, offer teachers a unique and proven technique for engaging students in the classroom to make learning fun. Gaining hands-on experience in all aspects of film making – from lighting, sound, and editing, to writing, directing, and performing – to acquire important and practical skills. These include verbal and written communication, time management, budgeting and creativity.

As they complete the program and look to the next level of their education, students will be armed with a concrete and compelling example of their work: a short film that explores the subject of their choice. This project serves the dual purpose of encouraging students to get involved with issues that matter to them, while providing a leg up in the college application process. What’s more, high school graduates enter adulthood with real world skills critical to 21st century employment.

The second educational component funded by the festival is scholarships for students to pursue advanced film studies at Kentucky universities. In conjunction, the two enterprises will afford Kentucky students the opportunities and tools to pursue film careers at a young age and reach professional status without ever leaving the Commonwealth. The advantage for students will be matched only by the long-term benefit to Kentucky. With our rich and diverse landscapes, coupled with a long tradition of artistic talent – from D.W. Griffith to Ned Beatty to George Clooney and Johnny Depp to Ashley Judd to Jennifer Lawrence – Kentucky has the potential to draw major economic investment in film production. By developing educational opportunities, we build the workforce and infrastructure to bring the movie industry to Kentucky as well as the financial boom that comes with it.

As the educational programs continue to grow, LIFF has expanded to include a Student Showcase of Films, creating the opportunity for Kentucky youth to have their work seen by a world-renowned audience of film professionals and aficionados. LFAI also offers workshops, seminars, and internships year-round, giving local students and adults exciting new opportunities to succeed in film and related careers.

The world of film has presented this community and The Commonwealth with some incredible opportunities, and LFAI looks forward to working with all of you to seize those opportunities and help Louisville and all of Kentucky thrive in the future.

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Board of Directors

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Conrad Bachmann

Co-President / Director

Conrad is the Co-Founder and Executive Director of Louisville’s International Festival of Film and Louisville Film Arts Institute. He began his acting career over 50 years ago in the classic TV sitcom, “The Many Loves of Dobie Gillis.” Since, he has gone onto to do hundreds of episode’s, over some 300 commercials, and many feature films. He has been remembered as the ill-fated Dr. Jim in the cult classic, “Tremors” He favors that as one of his best death scenes. He worked with every major actor in Hollywood, and doubled and performed the stunt work for Bing Crosby in the remake of “Stagecoach.” He served his country in the USA Air Force in Special Services where he performed for troops all through the Far East and served on the USA Air Force Entertainment Liaison Board. Among honors he has received is the Easter Seals Lily Award for Philanthropy, and in 2012 the newly built 600-seat Conrad Bachmann Auditorium at his Valley High School, named for him. Conrad served as Governor of the Performers Peer Group for the Academy of Television Arts and Sciences for twelve years and served on the Kentucky Film Commission for four years. He served on Louisville’s Film Commission for two years. He and Kate recently celebrated their 53rd wedding anniversary and have three children and four grandchildren.

His goal with LIFF is to bring greater recognition and create more tourism for his beloved city of
Louisville, Kentucky.

Brett Bachmann, JD LLM

Chief Executive Officer/ Director

Brett is the Chief Executive Officer for Heuser Hearing Institute (HHI). HHI is a not-for-profit organization that serves as a regional hearing center offering services for hearing loss and ear-related disorders. It is the only facility of its kind providing comprehensive diagnostic and treatment services to children and adults of all ages with hearing loss.

Mr. Bachmann became CEO of HHI in May 2013 and brings a unique set of skills and expertise to the role. Prior to joining HHI, Brett served as founder and CEO of The International Commission of Peace (ICOP), a non-profit organization that provides alternative dispute resolution training to war-torn countries. In addition to hands-on mediation and training in Rwanda, Kosovo, and Croatia, ICOP has championed social entrepreneurship and philanthropic pursuits. He also served as Executive Director of ARC, Los Angeles, CA, where he oversaw the expansion of the residential program, modernized the communication and computer systems, and managed the daily operations, yielding the organization positive financial results. A lawyer by trade, Mr. Bachmann also founded and operated his own law firm, specializing in special education law. Closer to home, Mr. Bachmann serves as co-founder of the Louisville’s International Festival of Film (LIFF), now in its twelfth year.

He spearheaded a chief component of the festival which gives back to the community by creating education programs in conjunction with Jefferson County Public Schools (JCPS).

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Brian Cullinan

Co-President / Director

Brian is a co-founder and principal of Cullinan Associates, Inc., a Louisville based investment management firm that combines specialized investment advice with exemplary client service.

A former Vice-President and legal counsel for Commonwealth Investment Group, registered representative for Stifel, Nicolaus & Co., a clerk for the City of Louisville’s Law and Public Works Departments, Brian brings a diverse background and shrewd business expertise to LIFF.

Brian also has a long tenure of charitable service in the Louisville community. He served on the Board of Directors for the Ned Beatty Hope for Children Classic, which has donated hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Louisville Easter Seals Center, and was the organization’s president in 2001. In addition, he has been a volunteer on fundraising committees for the Boy Scouts and the J. Graham Brown Cancer Center. An accomplished attorney with a J.D. from the University of Louisville School of Law and a B.S. in Public Affairs from Indiana University, Brian garnered a Mayor’s Citation in 1988 in recognition of work involving City of Louisville’s lawsuit against asbestos manufacturers. He also sat on the Board of Directors of the Louisville Forum and the Walden School Board of Trustees.

Michelle Care Wix

Director

Michelle D. Care Wix has been with the Louisville Film Arts Institute since its inception. She currently serves as a director and manages intellectual properties, websites and all digital assets. Previously, she served on the Board of the Ned Beatty Hope for Children Classic, which raised funds for the former Louisville Easter Seals Center / Cardinal Hill, along with coordinating The Taste of The Oaks, volunteered with Kosair Children's Hospital and Sparc-Hope.

Michelle has more than three decades of experience in design in print and digital, including the past 20 years as a multimedia developer with Louisville's top advertising agency, The Power Agency. There, she has been part of several ADDY award winning teams. Her work has included both linear and non-linear multimedia presentations, including interactive and non-interactive, prerecorded and live.

She received her bachelor of arts degree from Columbia College, Missouri.  She and her husband, Jeff, currently reside in Kentucky.

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