McClung’s Magazine blogger Nancy Barnett interviews Heather Webb, executive director of WIFT-T at its Crystal Awards on Dec. 5.
McClung’s Magazine blogger Nancy Barnett was invited to attend the Crystal Awards on Dec. 5 held at The Ritz-Carlton Hotel. The 24th annual gala luncheon hosted by the not-for-profit Women in Film and Television Toronto Division (WIFT-T) recognizes and celebrates the achievements of women and men in film, television and digital media. Here, she sits down with Heather Webb, WIFT-T’s executive director, the fifth of six interviews with winners and the women behind WIFT-T to come at McClungs.ca.
By: Nancy Barnett
Feature image via Nancy Barnett.
Heather Webb has held executive management positions in non-profit visual arts and education-based organizations for over ten years. She was appointed executive director of WIFT-T last February.
After working in non-profit visual art for so long, what is it like working in the non-profit media industry now?
The broadcast sector’s a new beast for me but I’m learning quickly about it and loving it. Again WIFT is very much dear to the things I love. I love working for non-profit because everyone there is committed to helping people and to the cause. WIFT is a really exemplary organization for that. It’s all about supporting people and making their career development happen. That’s something I’ve always loved doing. I did it in the visual arts sector and now I’m doing it in this sector.
Do you foresee WIFT offering more mentorship programs to students or beginners without professional credits?
We’re always looking to expand our reach. We’ve been really fortunate in that we have a lot of partnerships with corporations. We try to gear them to different media but also different levels of experience. Some of them are geared towards people who have a couple production credits and some are geared more towards people who are just starting out. We try to hit a wide range so we’re hitting people with emerging experience, and mid-career as well because there’s a need at every level. It’s always a balancing act.
Comedy often doesn’t get the recognition it deserves so I’m happy to see a comedian being honoured. Why did you choose Samantha Bee for this year’s international achievement award?
To be honest, we just all love her and we love the work she does. The international award is something that is decided internally and Sam Bee was at the top of our list. We were really excited that she said yes and could fit us into her schedule. I think sometimes people forget about the comedic actress side of things and always have a focus on the drama. It was really great for us and she’s such a great role model for any young comedian in Canada.