Getting To Know Nora Brown; A Film Commissioner Making A Difference In Our Film Community

Getting To Know Nora Brown; A Film Commissioner Making A Difference In Our Film Community

May 23rd, 2017

You first met Che in Rochester works for actor Che Holloway, an impromptu interview and amble through the Neighborhood of the Arts.

An aspiring and successful actor, Che is deeply immersed in the Rochester cultural scene. So much so, we’ve named him Che of The Town!

Exclusively for Talker, Che has solicited and is conducting interviews from about 60 Rochestarians working in a diversity of creative fields.

For the full series, see Che of The Town: Interviews

Getting To Know Nora Brown; A Film Commissioner Making A Difference In Our Film Community

nora headshot 2

Photos courtesy of Nora Brown

In this highlight we turn our attention to Nora Brown, an executive director of the Rochester/Finger Lakes Film Commission.

Tell us a little about yourself, where you’re from, grew up, what H.S./College you attended etc.

I grew up in Penfield, NY and graduated from Penfield High School (when our football team was the Chiefs….now called the Patriots).

What inspired you to be a Film Commissioner? Early experiences worth sharing?

I never really considered being a film commissioner, it really just happened. I was still working in film production when a position as Deputy Director opened at the Rochester/Finger Lakes Film Commission. I was recruited to fill the position and I was appointed Executive Director a few years later.

Talk about a time where you have faced adversity/conflict and have triumphed.

If you know about film production, then you know that adversity/conflict comes with the job. Weather, schedules, road closures…. are all factors that are movable objects and these changes have to be dealt with.

What do you believe sets you apart from other Film Commissioners?

The most obvious thing that sets our Film Commission apart from others is that our staff is made up of individuals who have all had boots on the ground experience in film production. I have 30+ years experience in the industry prior to being appointed to my current position. Unlike many film commissions, our commission has an educational component.nora 1

Do you have other interests or hobbies?

I love screening films; in fact I watch a film or 2 every day.
I am the Artistic Director for High Falls Film Festival (Celebrating WOMEN in Film); so that keeps me busy watching films along with the Programming Committee members, to select the program for our annual film fest which takes place in November every year.

Music is another interest. I am a singer/songwriter. I play guitar and sort of know my way around a piano. I love to go out and listen to live music

To be honest, cooking is my favorite pastime. I grew up in the restaurant business; and I am always trying out new recipes.nora 2

Any projects you have out or currently working on?

We are currently working with a number of feature films whose producers have decided to shoot them in our region. There is production going on every day in the Rochester/Finger Lakes Region- and we are here to assist with information about support services and regional infrastructure.

Where would you like to see yourself in 5 years?

I have the best job in the world and I hope to continue to do this for many years to come

How can we follow along in your journey? Social media?

Facebook-Rochester/Finger Lakes Film Commission

Twitter- @filmrochester


Josh C. Pies; Innovative Cinematographer and Dedicated Family Man from Che

About The Author

Welcome to Talker of the Town! My name is David Kramer. I have a Ph.D in English and teach at Keuka College. I am a former and still active Fellow at the Nazareth College Center for Public History and a Storyteller in Residence at the SmallMatters Institute. Over the years, I have taught at Monroe Community College, the Rochester Institute of Technology and St. John Fisher College. I have published numerous Guest Essays, Letters, Book Reviews and Opinion pieces in The New York Times, Rochester Democrat and Chronicle, the Buffalo News, the Rochester Patriot, the Providence Journal, the Providence Business News, the Brown Alumni Magazine, the New London Day, the Boston Herald, the Messenger Post Newspapers, the Wedge, the Empty Closet, the CITY, Lake Affect Magazine and Brighton Connections. My poetry appears in The Criterion: An International Journal in English and Rundenalia and my academic writing in War, Literature and the Arts and Twentieth Century Literary Criticism. Starting in February 2013, I wrote for three Democratic and Chronicle  blogs, "Make City Schools Better," "Unite Rochester," and the "Editorial Board." When my tenure at the D & C  ended, I wanted to continue conversations first begun there. And start new ones.  So we created this new space, Talker of the Town, where all are invited to join. I don’t like to say these posts are “mine.” Very few of them are the sole product of my sometimes overheated imagination. Instead, I call them partnerships and collaborations. Or as they say in education, “peer group work.” Talker of the Town might better be Talkers of the Town. The blog won’t thrive without your leads, text, pictures, ideas, facebook shares, tweets, comments and criticisms.


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