Wednesday, October 21st, 2015

Wednesday, October 21st

6:15 PM - 8:30, Salon II, Open to All Attendees

An Evening of Women's Media

Hosted By: Lori H. Schwartz, Technology Catalyst, Content Strategist and Media Advisor, Radio Host: The Tech Cat Show, Managing Partner @StoryTech, Adjunct Prof at LMU

Session II

We Came, We Saw, We Kicked Ass.  -  Chatting with Woman Visionaries, Leaders and Tech Mavens

Bettina Sherick, Be in Touch Advisors, Founder Hollywood in Pixles, SVP, Digital Strategic Marketing 20th Century Fox International, Storyteller

Jacquie Barnbrook, Reel Vox, Virtual Reality Producer, VRC, Sony Visual Effects Producer, Storyteller

Shannon Blake Gans, CEO & Co-Founder New Deal Studios , Storyteller

Julia Frey, Executive Producer at Baraboom! Studios, VFX Producer, Storyteller

Sandy Abrams,  Founder, Moisture Jamzz, Inc.; Author, YourIdeaInc;  Social Influencer and Entrepreneurial Enthusiast, , Storyteller




Before there was social media, chief digital officers and virtual reality film festivals, there were visionaries, who operationalized new tech platforms,


created new products and engaged new consumer behaviors against the popular tide. While the dialogue has been, there aren’t enough woman in tech, business and leadership roles,  these woman were there from the beginning, breaking ground and making shit happen.  Join Lori H. Schwartz,  leading tech strategist, speaker and radio host (The Tech Cat Show) as she chats with 5 woman on how they’ve forged ahead, creating their own companies and initiatives to blow the status quo up. Join the conversation, bring your war stories and saddle up for a great night of dialogue on how we can keep the mometum going.


Shannon Gans, Co-founder and CEO, New Deal Studios: CEO & Co-Founder, New Deal Studios: As Co-founder and CEO of New Deal Studios, a dynamic 21st Century visual effects and Media Studio, Shannon started her career with 2 projects and 2 partners straight out of the USC Entrepreneur Program. Since then, Shannon has carefully guided the evolution of the company over the past twenty years into a 21st Century Studio which develops and produces film, commercials, TV, web, mobile and virtual reality projects. Though best known for her below the line career in visual effects on over 100 of the biggest films and over 50 commercials, Shannon has crossed the line and has been a co-producer on 4 motion pictures, in addition to shorts, digital media projects, web TV shows and commercials. Shannon is a member of the Producers Guild of America, the Entrepreneur’s Organization (EO), and the Visual Effects Society.


Bettina Sherick, Founder, Be In Touch Advisors, Hollywood in Pixels: Bettina Sherick launched her first website in 1997 as a side project when she was a marketing manager at Strouds, Inc., and ever since has been a passionate teacher and student of digital marketing. She is fascinated by the impact that digital continues to change the way people connect, communicate, and consume. Her 17 years of digital strategy and marketing experience has led her to founding Be.InTouch Advisors. In her previous role as SVP, Digital Strategic Marketing, Bettina Sherick pioneered Digital Marketing for 20th Century Fox International (TCFI). During her 14 years with Fox, she ensured that TCFI consistently stayed at the forefront of innovative marketing. She oversaw over 100+ international digital marketing campaigns, including blockbusters such as THE FAULT IN OUR STARS, LIFE OF PI, the entire X-MEN franchise, both RISE and DAWN OF THE PLANET OF THE APES, AVATAR, all films in the ICE AGE franchise, and THE SIMPSONS MOVIE, the latter of which won the Webby Award and People's Voice Webby Award. She was named an Internationalist of the Year by the Internationalist Magazine in 2010, honoring marketing professionals who "break the mold" with their multinational brand communications. She is the recipient of the 2011 iMedia Visionary Entertainment Marketer Award. Ms. Sherick also authored a chapter on digital history in the book "Digital State: How the Internet is Changing Everything". Ms. Sherick is a member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS). She is also a professional member of the British Academy of Film and Television Arts.  Passionate about international digital marketing, Ms. Sherick regularly speaks at conferences around the world and guest lectures at universities in and around Los Angeles.


Sandy Abrams had an “Ah-ha” moment for a beauty product and turned the idea into a multi-million dollar company. A self-taught entrepreneur without any business background, Sandy inspires others that they too are qualified to be an entrepreneur. She turned her naiveté into success, experience and savvy and guides others through the process with her book titled Your Idea, Inc. Abrams is a featured blogger for the HuffPost SmBiz vertical, where she writes about entrepreneurs and SmBiz. Her virtual office address is @sandyabrams.


Julia Frey – Producer, Writer: Born and raised in Hawai'i, Julia Frey fell in love with movies and came to Los Angeles to study and work in film and became a successful Visual Effects Producer. In her varied career, she worked on such films as Contact, White House Down, Memoirs of a Geisha, Master and Commander, Walk the Line, and the pilot for HBO's Game Of Thrones. Working in both the facility and production sides of VFX, Julia has seen all aspects of the business and created strong relationships with studios, directors and producers. Julia has also worked as a VFX consultant for a variety of filmmakers and studios, including traveling to Macedonia to advise for a VFX studio there. Parallel to her VFX career, Julia has written many screenplays and is currently developing a number of original TV series.


Lori H. Schwartz, Technology Catalyst, Content Strategist and Media Advisor, Radio Host: The Tech Cat Show, Managing Partner @StoryTech, Adjunct Prof at LMU: Lori works with top creative and strategic executives of multiple brands, agencies and content companies to ensure understanding of new and evolving technology as well as emerging business models. Sitting at the center of Hollywood, Madison Avenue and Silicon Valley, Lori translates opportunities across all borders. With a focus on the habits of the consumer and the evolving marketer’s goals, Lori provides the latest solution recommendations for this ever changing media landscape. Previously, Lori was Chief Technology Catalyst for McCann Worldgroup, North America where she was responsible for driving technology innovation at one of the world’s largest marketing communications companies, with a focus on igniting IP creation for marketers and their brands. Lori was also one of the key principals to launch the highly regarded Interpublic Media Lab ( As Senior Vice President and director of the IPG Lab since 2006, Lori oversaw the group’s strategy, helping to keep clients and agencies ahead of the digital curve, driving innovation in the dramatically changing media landscape. She piloted brand interaction opportunities on behalf of Interpublic, as well as facilitated emerging media upfronts and exclusive deals for Interpublic agencies and clients, including Microsoft, Intel, General Motors, Nestlé and Sony. Lori is a managing partner of StoryTech, a strategic consulting and packaging firm dedicated to informed collaboration between storytellers, including brands, and technology companies resulting in profitable business and content ventures. The company defined and sits at the center of the emerging content ecosystem providing production, distribution and engagement strategies.


Jacquie Barnbrook – Producer (BAFTA, SAG-AFTRA, PGA): Jacquie Barnbrook was the Producer of Sony Pictures Imageworks’ first in-house animated short film “The ChubbChubbs!”, winner of the 2002 Academy Award® for Best Animated Short Film. “The ChubbChubbs!”, which was seen in over 2,500 theaters was also honored with a BAFTA nomination and was the recipient of numerous awards. It is the first animated short to have its own DVD release. Ms. Barnbrook is the founder and President of Reel Vox, Inc., an independent film production company based in Los Angeles. She wrote and produced an award-winning short film entitled “Wear Something Nice”. She produced “Inspire: Chicago Spire” an artistic film about the Chicago Spire, intended to be the largest residential building in the western hemisphere. She produced the theatrically released animated short “Live Music” through the power of social networking. She has 20 years of experience in film, primarily in visual effects and animation working with A level Producers and Directors. Some of her credits include, “Contact”, “Haunted Mansion”, “Spider-Man”, “Stuart Little”, “Body of Lies”, “Sex and the City 2”, “Alice in Wonderland”, “Ted”, “The Hunger Games” and “Cosmos: A Space Odyssey,” and most recently she has been consulting on Disney’s “Jungle Book” and “Pirates of the Carribean 5”. Her experience in leading edge technology has led her to producing two VR projects for The Virtual Reality Company; “The Bus to Canton” a VR documentary about Jerome Bettis and his rise to the Football Hall of Fame; “The Martian VR Experience” a narrative interactive experience which would be the first of its kind as an immersive cinema experience.