STAFF

Caricature created by John Musker
Caricature created by John Musker

Aubry Mintz

Interim Executive Director

Aubry Mintz has worked as a feature animator (ILM, Square USA) and directed projects for Smirnoff, McDonalds, MuchMusic and General Mills and the Canadian rock band Rush.

As animation producer Mintz worked on several projects including; a short animated film about war torn Syria with ASIFA-Hollywood, an animated series “Airship Dracula” with voice talent Paul Sorvino, and Alan Tudyk, and music by The Sadies, and “Nothing to Say” a short animated film (which he also wrote/directed/animated) narrated by Danny Aiello which received official selections at 41 festivals and won awards at Australia Independent Film FestivalArctic Film Festival (a United Nations SDG Initiative), Palm Springs International Animation FestivalAnchorage Film Festival and a finalist at Los Angeles Independent Film FestivalChildren’s Cinema Awards, and Oakland Short Film Festival. Aubry is also currently developing his short film Nothing to Say into a children’s book.

Co-author for the book “Ideas for the Animated Short” 2nd Edition, and writer for Animation MagazineAnimationScoop.com and IndieWire.com, Mintz presented at several companies and conferences including; Disney Feature Animation, Blue Sky Animation Studios and DreamWorks AnimationSan Diego Comic ConSIGGRAPH and CTNX . Aubry was also guest host on TV’s Turner Classic Movies (TCM) for a 4-hour program consulting on the animated short films from the National Film Board of Canada.

As an educator Aubry developed college animation programs as chair of animation at Laguna College of Art and Design, Director of Animation and VFX at Chapman University, and is currently a Professor of Animation at CSULB where he also served as Director of the School of Art. Mintz is currently Interim Executive Director at ASIFA-Hollywood.

Portrait created by Keyara Gotham
Portrait created by Keyara Gotham

Leslie Ezeh

Director of Operations

Leslie has been a staff member at ASIFA-Hollywood since 2017 and currently serves as its Director of Operations. She is also the founder and President of Legends Animated, a 501c3 worker self-directed nonprofit animation company that provides collaborative opportunities to create independent animation that is both engaging and impactful. Leslie enjoys supporting the animation community through both organizations, as well as by participating as a judge at animation festivals and events like the Kaboom Animation Festival, View Conference, and the Los Angeles Animation Festival.

Jeff Wike, Chief Financial Officer

Jeff Wike

Chief Financial Officer

Jeff Wike is Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer for DreamWorks in charge of all aspects of software, hardware and technology strategy and innovation in support of animated film and television production.  Jeff joined DreamWorks in 1996 and has been credited on over 30 animated feature films. Prior to DreamWorks, he had an extensive career developing software for the department of defense, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory and leading R&D projects in the area of 2D and 3D image processing, robotics and artificial intelligence. Jeff received his Bachelor of Science in Engineering from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and his Masters in Computer Engineering from the University of Southern California. He is an active member of the VES, serves on the Department of Energy Exascale Compute Industry Advisory Board, the HPE Global Board of Advisors and has served on the board of ASIFA-Hollywood since 2006.

Michael Paxton, Annie Awards Manager

Michael Paxton

Annie Awards Associate Producer

Michael has been in the film industry for over 40 years, working on a variety of live action, animated and stage productions along the way. He first entered the world of animation at Disney in 1989 as a writer for the Feature Animation Department during The Little Mermaid, followed by production work on a number of animated features and shorts–Rover Dangerfield (with Rodney Dangerfield) for Warner Bros., as Visual Effects Supervisor on Stuart Little 2 for Sony Imageworks, as the Associate Producer on The Lion King 1 ½ for Disney, Bionicle 3: Web of Shadows for Lego/Miramax, Smallville Legends: Kara & The Chronicles of Krypton for Warner Bros. and as the Assistant Director on The Pagemaster for Twentieth Century Fox. His documentary—Ayn Rand: A Sense of Life—won an Oscar nomination and a Golden Satellite Award for Best Documentary Feature in 1997. He also co-directed the documentary short, A Place in the Circle, with Pixote Hunt. He has authored a number of books and lectured at numerous film festivals and universities across the country, while teaching as an adjunct instructor on film production, directing, production design and film history. As a producer/writer/director, he is also currently developing an animated short and a number of feature film projects.

Sara Martin, Social Media Specialist

Sara Martin

Social Media Specialist

Sara Martin works at ASIFA Hollywood as a Social Media Specialist. While she’s not working on Social Media Content, Sara is working at Sony Pictures Animation as a Post Production Coordinator and helps manage all Features and TV shows in the SPA Post Pipeline. She has previously worked as a Post Production Supervisor for an AMC/Titmouse Show called Pantheon and has previously worked at Stoopid Buddy Stoodios as a Post Production Manager for 10+ shows and 20+ commercials with clients like Disney, Nickelodeon, HBO Max, Netflix, etc. Sara has also produced work as an Independent Filmmaker and Producer and has produced Music Videos, Media Campaigns, and Websites for various Clients. Beyond Sara’s Industry work, she is an award-winning experimental/narrative filmmaker that’s been featured in over 50 film festivals worldwide, which include the Vancouver International Film Festival, Hawaii International Film Festival, the Barcelona International Audio-Visual film festival, and many more. Sara graduated from the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) with a BFA in Film/Video.