Artistic Director and founding member of Kartemquin Films, Gordon Quinn has been making documentaries for over 50 years. Roger Ebert, of the Chicago Sun Times, called his first film Home for Life (1966) "an extraordinarily moving documentary." With Home for Life Gordon established the direction he would take for the next four decades, making cinéma vérité films that investigate and critique society by documenting the unfolding lives of real people.
Joanna has worked as a producer, director and a former Director of Development for Kartemquin over the past decade. No matter where life takes her, she will always consider Kartemquin her filmmaking home! Currently, living in the Bay Area with her husband and two little girls, Joanna is finishing the Kartemquin film On Beauty about former fashion photographer Rick Guidotti’s campaign to change the way we see the beauty in difference told through the stories of three women with genetic syndromes living in Africa, Upstate New York and the Middle East.
Jerry Blumenthal, one of the founding partners of Kartemquin Films, was a director, producer, editor and sound recordist with Kartemquin from 1967 until his passing on November 13, 2014. His most recent completed work was as Editor on Kartemquin's 2010 documentary, Prisoner Of Her Past. Blumenthal's previous film, Golub: Late Works are the Catastrophes (2004), co-produced with Gordon Quinn, revisited the great American artist thirteen years after the award-winning Golub (1988) and was a selection at the 2004 IDFA.
Howard has covered the arts for the Chicago Tribune since 1978 and joined the staff in 1983. He has written five books: “Portraits in Jazz,” “Let Freedom Swing,” “Jelly’s Blues” (with William Gaines), “Van Cliburn” and “Prisoner of Her Past” (originally published as “The First and Final Nightmare of Sonia Reich”). The latter inspired the Kartemquin documentary film Prisoner of Her Past which Reich wrote, narrated and co-produced.
Zak is an Emmy-winning Documentary Producer who previously served as Director of Production at Kartemquin Films for more than a decade. Most recently, he produced Saving Mes Aynak, which follows an Afghan archaeologist as he and histeam race to save a 2,000-year-old Buddhist archaeological site in Afghanistan from imminent demolition by a Chinese copper mine. Zak also produced the critically acclaimed film Life Itself.
Diane worked in LA for over 17 years before moving back to her hometown of Chicago. While in LA, Diane had a successful career at NBC and at Paramount Pictures where she was last the Vice President of Marketing.