BS, University of Pennsylvania MFA, New York University Tisch School of the Arts MFA, the American Film Institute
Richard Gershman’s long list of credits span theatre, television, and film projects. Highlights include directing episodes of Chicago Hope and Judging Amy, working as an assistant director on Ugly Betty and Gossip Girl, and as first assistant director for the fifth season of Lost. He also served as production manager on Buffy, the Vampire Slayer. Gershman worked in a production capacity on feature films such as The Hunt for Red October and Queen’s Logic. His theatrical experience includes working with Anthony Hopkins on Shakespeare’s The Tempest, directing at Seattle Rep and the Mark Taper Forum, and assisting on the Broadway and London productions of Children of a Lesser God and Neil Simon’s Fools. Gershman has received numerous awards and grants and is a member of the Directors Guild of America and the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.
BA English Education, University of Central Florida MFA Motion Picture, Television, and Recording Arts, Florida State University The founding chair of the Watkins film program, Valorie Stover Quarles has worked as a filmmaker and educator for more than three decades. She has received numerous festival awards and grants for her projects and programs from the Tennessee Arts Commission, the Florida Department of Cultural Affairs, and the Academy of Motion Picture, Arts and Sciences. Quarles has served as the president of the Nashville Film Festival and as a member of the Nashville Screenwriting Conference Advisory Board and the Film Nashville board.
BA English Honors, Tulane University MFA English and Writing, Long Island University
Steven Womack co-wrote the television films Volcano: Fire on the Mountain and Proudheart, which was nominated for the CableAce Award. He is a member of the Writers Guild of America and an award-winning author of ten novels including Dirty Money. His novel Dead Folks’ Blues was honored with the Edgar Allan Poe Award by the Mystery Writers of America. Womack also coedited and wrote the introduction for The True Crime Files of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. His latest novel is By Blood Written.
BFA Film, Watkins College of Art Zac Adams is an accomplished cinematographer, director, and writer. He won an EMMY Award for the documentary Hunger in America and received a second nomination for Nashville Rises. He also has directed music videos, including one for the band of actor Billy Bob Thornton. Adams’s work has appeared on PBS, VH-1, MTV, and CMT.
BS Nursing, Vanderbilt University MFA Creative Writing, Brown University PhD English (Film Studies and American Literature concentrations), Middle Tennessee State University Nancy Roche specializes in American independent film, adaptations, women and film, and cinemas of the 1960s. She is particularly interested in culture studies, narrative, and gender and identity performance. Roche has received various academic awards, including the Harris Award and Feldman Prize in Fiction during her time at Brown University and a Provost Writing Fellowship at MTSU. Her work has appeared in Jacket Magazine,The LGBTQ America Today Encyclopedia, Greenwood Press, The Essential Sopranos Reader, University Press of Kentucky, and Modern American Drama on Screen (Cambridge University Press). Roche is a member of the Modern Language Association, the Pop Culture Association/American Culture Association, and the Society for Cinema and Media Studies. She also is a lecturer in English and Women’s Studies at Vanderbilt University.
BA Education/Communications, University of Wisconsin – Eau Claire With more than 20 years’ experience in lighting and shooting, Mark Schlicher has worked as a director, a director of photography, and a Steadicam operator. His work—which has taken him from Peru to Zambia—has appeared on HBO, PBS, Lifetime, and The Smithsonian Channel. Schlicher’s latest project is the documentary Chipping Away: The Life and Legacy of Sculptor William Edmondson.
BA, Illinois Wesleyan University
Rob Wenner teaches courses in sound production and post-production. He has worked in the area of audio production for more than 30 years as an engineer, designer, and composer. Some of the projects he has worked on include those for the legend Chuck Jones, such as Timberwolf, and animated segments of Mrs. Doubtfire and Stay Tuned. He has worked for such clients as Keds, Oscar Meyer, ServPro, and Goodwill, and on projects that have appeared on HBO, Discovery Kids, and Fox Sports.
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Important Announcement: Watkins College to Merge with Belmont University in Fall 2020