Film Festival Alliance began as a series of programs at IFP Film Week, under the name IFP Festival Forum, and an annual brunch at the Sundance Film Festival, spearheaded by Amy Dotson.
IFP Festival Forum formalized its relationship with IFP. The programming continued thanks to the leadership of Jody Arlington, Anne Chaisson, Amy Dotson, Jon Gann, Tom Hall, Deirdre Haj, and Kristin McCracken.
IFP Festival Forum expanded its programs and convened at the 2014 Art House Convergence for the first time. Over 50 festivals gathered at the Homestead Resort to discuss best practices, curatorial efficiencies, research and advocacy discussions.
Following the IFP Festival Forum gathering at Art House Convergence, the organizers filed for 501c3 status, renaming itself Film Festival Alliance in the process. Colin Stanfield served as the interim Executive Director, overseeing the non-profit certification process.
FFA continued to expand, with Jon Gann overseeing the annual programming, branding, and membership development. FFA grew our presence at Art House Convergence.
As FFA grew in scope and membership, the organization transitioned from a volunteer-run organization and hired a year-round Executive Director, Lela Meadow-Conner, and consultants to assist with programming, development and communications.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, FFA expanded to virtual programming to ensure access to professionals at all levels and cemented its reputation as a vital industry resource via virtual roundtables, an annual Leadership Lab professional development program, expanding our network of partners, and creating industry working groups and pandemic best practice calls.
FFA launched its own semi annual event, FilmEx; the inaugural FilmEx in January 2021 was virtual, followed by a July virtual conference.
FFA bid a fond farewell to our esteemed Executive Director, Lela Meadow-Conner, who stepped down after five years. Barbara Twist stepped up from Associate Director to Executive Director. FFA held our first in-person event, since January 2020, at the 2022 Atlanta Film Festival, a FilmEx Regional. FFA launched a brand new website + membership experience in partnership with eConverse Media and Blackbird Revolt.