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Notes from the Reel World: The President's Column, February 2006

By diane estelle Vicari

Dear IDA Community

Happy New Year! 

What an exciting year ahead of us as we move toward our 25th Anniversary in 2007. Looking back at the history of the IDA and at the accomplishments of my predecessors, I am filled with a sense of gratitude and pride in how far we have come as a community! Documentarians continue to stand at the forefront in taking on some of society's most challenging issues. We break new ground and tell new stories, taking our audiences into uncharted territories, educating them on issues of international impact--and, as the box office figures over the past few years have demonstrated, delivering works that are very entertaining.  And while the ever-evolving formats and modes of delivery have made our efforts to be ahead of the curve all the more challenging, in the end, it all comes down to the story.

We have prospered and thrived beyond our wildest dreams!

Our mission at the IDA is to serve and support your efforts and to promote your nonfiction films and videos. We strive to heighten the public's awareness of and appreciation and demand for the documentary form, and we are committed to continuing to represent you on all levels. As we progress further in our outreach efforts, we plan to build a stronger presence with a more dynamic website that would better serve the IDA membership as the primary platform for communications.

We bid farewell to many individuals whose terms on the IDA Board of Directors have ended. Richard Propper leaves after two years as president, to culminate his nine years on the board. With his fellow departing board members, Richard oversaw much growth and change at the IDA. Michael Donaldson, who served three years as IDA President, has been with the IDA from the beginning, serving as our legal counsel until he joined the IDA Board in 2000. I would also like to thank Marina Goldavskaya and Sven Berkemeier, both nine-year veterans; Michael Rose, whose four years on the board included three years as chair of the Magazine Committee; Jeff Swimmer, a three-year veteran; and St. Clair Bourne, who served for two years.

The Nominating Committee reviewed a strong field of candidates for new board members that would reflect the various documentary-related professions that comprise our membership. After much deliberation, we have selected the incoming class of 2006. Please welcome Judy Chaikin, Sara Hutchison, Patty Oertel, Steven Reich, Eddie Schmidt and Jeff Tuchman.

The IDA board members and staff devote many hours to help ensure the ongoing growth of the organization. I encourage you to get to know them, and I look forward to continuing to be of service to you.


With my best wishes for the New Year,

diane estelle Vicari
IDA President