Board of Directors


Board President, Chicago Filmmakers; Owner, Black Cat Productions:
Professor of Instruction, Columbia College Chicago

Sharon Zurek is an award-winning producer and editor with an extensive background in production and postproduction. She specializes in working on independent features and social issue documentaries, especially those focusing on strong women and queer content. Zurek is the co-founder and curator of the popular monthly screening series Dyke Delicious @ Chicago Filmmakers that started in 2003. She is a Professor of Instruction at Columbia College Chicago in Cinema and Television Arts where she prepares her students for a professional career in post-production. Zurek received her B.A. from Columbia College Chicago.



Strategic Marketing, M Strategy Group, Inc.

Laura brings her strategic marketing and project management experience to Chicago Filmmakers. An avid arts supporter, Laura was a founding member of the Dayton Arts Alliance-Young Professionals organization in Dayton, Ohio.  In her current position, Laura is responsible for marketing and sales channel management, development of strategic marketing plans, web analytics and partnership opportunities for US and global clients. Previously, she had spent more than ten years in the computer industry focused on marketing and business development, both in the United States and Germany.  She received her BA in International Business and German from Alma College and her MBA education from the University of Dayton.



Freelance Post Production Supervisor
Post-Production Instructor, Columbia College Chicago

Carol Schaffner is a freelance Post Production Supervisor for independent films. She teaches post-production at Columbia College Chicago and is currently editing her first documentary, A Life By Accident. Previously she worked as Digital Intermediate Coordinator at Filmworkers/Astro Lab and Post Producer/Account Executive at i^3. Prior to that she worked for the video distributor MS Distributing and for the Wisconsin Center for Film and Theater Research. Carol received her BFA at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee.


Executive Director, Chicago Filmmakers

Brenda Webb has been with Chicago Filmmakers since July 1978. She began as Program Director and became Executive Director in 1985. Prior to that she worked as an educational film editor at Treeflower Films in Chicago and taught in the Film Dept. at Columbia College Chicago. She has served on the Board of the National Alliance of Media Arts and Culture and the Association of Independent Video and Filmmakers, and was a founding board member for the Chicago chapter of Women in Film. She has served as a grants panelist for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting as well as for several foundations and government funding agencies. She is founder of Reeling: The Chicago LGBTQ+ International Film Festival. She has a B.A. in Psychology from Indiana University.