ABIGAIL E. DISNEY
President & CEO
Abigail E. Disney is an Emmy-winning director and producer, philanthropist and the CEO and president of Fork Films. An active supporter of peacebuilding, she is passionate about advancing women's roles in the public sphere. Abigail’s films and series focus on social issues and spotlight extraordinary people who speak truth to power.
Having grown up in a family of filmmakers, Abigail turned to documentaries when inspired to tell the story of a brave group of women who used nonviolent protests and sex strikes to bring an end to Liberia’s long civil war. She and renowned filmmaker Gini Reticker made the widely acclaimed PRAY THE DEVIL BACK TO HELL, which is broadly credited with highlighting the achievements of Leymah Gbowee, who received a Nobel Peace Prize in 2011. Abigail and Gini went on to found Fork Films, which is known for making and funding high profile, critically acclaimed documentaries that are seen on PBS, Netflix, HBO and other major outlets.
In addition to producing original films, Fork Films awards grants to non-fiction films that promote peacebuilding, human rights and social justice with a particular emphasis on projects with women behind or in front of the camera. As of June 2017, Fork Films has awarded over $4 million to 90 documentaries including CAMERAPERSON, TRAPPED, 1971, THE MASK YOU LIVE IN, CITIZEN KOCH, HOT GIRLS WANTED, THE INVISIBLE WAR, and SUN COME UP. Fork Films grantees have premiered at top tier film festivals, won major awards and moved the needle on important social issues.
In 2009, Abigail founded Peace is Loud, a nonprofit that inspires action through media and live events that spotlight women leaders on the frontline of peacebuilding worldwide.
Abigail’s directorial debut, Emmy-winning THE ARMOR OF LIGHT, co-directed by Kathleen Hughes, premiered at the 2015 Tribeca Film Festival. The film follows Reverend Rob Schenck, an Evangelical minister, and Lucy McBath, the mother of a teenage shooting victim, who ask, is it possible to be both pro-gun and pro-life? Peace is Loud led the outreach and engagement campaign for THE ARMOR OF LIGHT to restore a moral, ethical, and theological framework to the conversation about gun violence in America. The campaign has initiated and supported dialogue with faith leaders and communities around the country, reaching out beyond the documentary film community to target dozens of conservative evangelical influencers .
In 2012, along with Pamela Hogan and Gini Reticker, Abigail created and executive produced the first-of-its-kind series for PBS, WOMEN, WAR & PEACE. The five-part series looked at women in modern war as active agents for peace and positive change makers in their communities. It garnered the Overseas Press Club’s Edward R. Murrow Award, a Gracie Award, and a Television Academy Honor. Season II of the series is currently in production.
Abigail also recently executive produced the Fork Films original production THE TRIALS OF SPRING, a major multiplatform project that tells the stories of nine women on the front lines of change in the MENA region.
Abigail is the recipient of numerous awards including an honor by the International Women’s Media Foundation for advancing women’s issues and peace initiatives; IDA's Amicus Award, The International Advocate for Peace Award, presented by Cardozo Law School; and the Epic Award presented by The White House Project.
Disney received her Bachelor's degree from Yale University, her Master's degree from Stanford University and her Doctorate from Columbia University. She is a mother of four.
VP of Production
Aideen joined Fork Films in September 2014 and is working closely with executive producers and producers from concept through successful distribution of the company's slate of feature documentaries.
She is a seasoned veteran of documentary production and has successfully overseen numerous projects - from single films to episodic series - through development, production and post production while constantly balancing the non-linear creative process with the business and logistics of production.
Aideen's career began in New York where she worked with Emmy winning and nominated directors, including Michael Moore; THE AWFUL TRUTH, Ellen Weissbrod; FACE TO FACE: THE SCHAPPELL TWINS, Zuzana Justman; VOICE OF THE CHILDREN and RUBY for HBO.
Returning to Ireland, Aideen headed up production at GMarshTv developing its core strengths and increasing its slate of documentaries. She also developed and produced several IFTA award winning documentaries and series for Irish television; RTE, Tg4 and Setanta including The Writing in the Sky, The Irish New Yorkers and The West's Awake.
Aideen recently returned to New York and found the perfect fit at Fork Films.
Development Associate Producer
Alexis joins Fork as Development Associate Producer after spending a year working closely with Gini and Kathy on new project ideas and producing a short radio story. She brings a knowledge of the social justice landscape, nonfiction podcasting, and a passion for documentary film. Prior to joining Fork, she worked in television production management, most recently on the weekly show, Moyers & Company. When she's not at the office, she spends her time plotting trips to all the national parks she wants to visit, and in the meantime happily wiling away hours reading.
Director of Finance and Accounting
Ameena is the Director of Finance and Accounting at Fork Films. In this role, Ameena works closely with the COO, the Head of Production, and the entire Fork Films team and external business office to oversee the fiscal management of the company and its productions.
Prior to joining Fork Films in October 2014, Ameena worked with several notable media-related companies in New York City and Los Angeles, including Conde Nast Entertainment, CBS, Paramount Pictures, Comedy Central, and ITVS.
Ameena holds a B.S. in Finance from the University of Southern California. She currently resides in New York City with her husband and daughter and travels extensively in her free time.
Chief Creative Officer
Chief Creative Officer of Fork Films, Gini Reticker is an Academy Award-nominated and Emmy Award-winning director and producer with a distinguished career that spans more than 20 years.
Reticker helmed THE TRIALS OF SPRING, chronicling a young woman’s journey from an Egyptian village to becoming an international human rights activist. Its release was part of a multi-media project which included six short films launching online on The New York Times. Concurrently, she executive produced the 2017 Emmy-nominated THE ARMOR OF LIGHT.
Reticker directed the widely acclaimed PRAY THE DEVIL BACK TO HELL, an inspiring story of Liberian women whose actions helped bring an end to a brutal civil war. She received an Academy Award nomination for producing the short film ASYLUM, recounting one woman’s journey to political asylum in the U.S. The same year she was nominated for an Emmy for A DECADE UNDER THE INFLUENCE, a look at the heyday of 1970s filmmakers, which garnered the National Review Board's Award for Best Documentary. Her first film THE HEART OF THE MATTER, a groundbreaking film about women and AIDS, won the Sundance Film Festival’s Freedom of Expression Award. Reticker also garnered an Emmy for LADIES FIRST, the story of women rebuilding post-genocide Rwanda. She was a creator and executive producer of the PBS series WOMEN, WAR & PEACE, recipient of the Overseas Press Club’s Edward R. Murrow Award as well as The Academy of Television Honors Award. Reticker co-produced THE BETRAYAL (NERAKHOON) - nominated for both an Academy Award and an Independent Spirit Award.
She served as Executive Producer on numerous Fork Films supported projects including the renowned CAMERAPERSON; the Netflix original HOT GIRLS WANTED; 1971; CITIZEN KOCH; ALIAS RUBY BLADE and SHE’S BEAUTIFUL WHEN SHE’S ANGRY.
Digital Media & Communications Coordinator
Before joining the Fork Films team, Hope worked as a freelancer with various television shows following an internship at THE DAILY SHOW with Jon Stewart. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin, where she majored in Film, English and Gender and Women Studies and worked with several campus publications, both as a writer and a multimedia assistant. In her free time, Hope enjoys creative writing, photography and sketch comedy.
JULI S. KOBAYASHI
VP of Operations
Juli began her career as a script reader and development intern, and then as production coordinator and occasional editor on industrials at a boutique commercial production company. She then went on to freelance on cable specials, live TV, concerts and reality TV for Bravo, MTV, CBS, A&E and Warner Bros. She had varied jobs such a research assistant, green room PA, director’s assistant, casting coordinator, and cue card PA.
Juli then went on to work with K2 Pictures on productions for VH1, Comedy Central, PBS, Sci-Fi Channel, IFC, Court TV, ESPN, and the Sundance Channel, juggling roles such as production coordinator/ manager, graphics designer, editor, and post production supervisor.
She joined Fork Films in 2008 to oversee distribution of the widely acclaimed documentary PRAY THE DEVIL BACK TO HELL and stayed on full time. She has been instrumental in the company’s overall growth and development over the years. As VP of Operations, Kobayashi oversees much of the day to day operations and collaborates with the management team on legal, financial and HR-related matters.
She holds a degree from NYU's Tisch School of the Arts' Film & TV production program. Outside of Fork Films, Juli is a writer and filmmaker, and wrote, produced, edited and directed a narrative short entitled ONE PAST.
Director of Grantmaking
Kat oversees the grant-making and investment arm of Fork Films where she plays a key roll in developing Fork Films grantmaking strategy and review process as well as serving as the primary contact for Fork Films supported filmmakers and grantees.
As a filmmaker her work explores American social and cultural history with a particular interest in gender, popular entertainment, and material culture.
She is currently directing BIG TOP, LITTLE LADY, a feature documentary exploring the lives of female circus performers who thrilled and dazzled the crowds during the height of the American train circuses. Her first film, THIS IS HOW I ROLL, takes a behind the scenes look into the intense subculture that is modern day men’s roller derby. In a sport dominated by women, what happened when the men want to play, too?
She occasionally teaches the course “Launching Your Documentary” at Brooklyn Brainery, a community-driven, crowd sourced educational space.
Prior to joining Fork Films in 2010 her experience included work in theatre, film, television, and commercial production.
Director of Creative Content
Kathleen Hughes is an award-winning producer, director and writer, as well as co-founder of the documentary film company, Okapi Productions. Her most recent film, The Armor of Light, which she produced and co-directed with director Abigail Disney, premiered at the 2015 Tribeca Film Festival. Called “powerful” and “provocative” by Vanity Fair, and “thoughtful and moving” by The Hollywood Reporter, the film tracks a conservative evangelical minister struggling with the morality of America’s gun culture. Among Kathleen’s many other notable films is Two American Families, a 21-year-long look at downward mobility in America, which she produced and directed with Tom Casciato and Bill Moyers for the PBS Frontline series. When it premiered in July of 2013, Variety called it “a potent treaty on the U.S.’ middle class [that] demands to be seen and discussed.” From 2008-11, Kathleen served as the executive producer of WNET’s multi-platform series Blueprint America, where she oversaw the creation of reports about America’s crumbling infrastructure for a wide range of public media outlets including PBS NewsHour, National Public Radio, Bill Moyers’ Journal, Now on PBS, and Need To Know. Blueprint also created two documentary film specials, “Road To the Future” and “Beyond the Motor City.” From 2007 to 2008 Kathleen served as a senior producer at NOW on PBS, managing a team nominated for two Emmy Awards. Kathleen’s Emmy Award-winning Moyers special Buying The War, detailing the media’s failure to examine the Bush Administration’s case for the 2003 invasion of Iraq, was called “one of the most gripping and important pieces of broadcast journalism this year” by the Washington Post. Kathleen’s other documentaries have appeared on PBS’s Frontline, NOW, and Wide Angle, and ABC News’ Turning Point, as well as many Bill Moyers specials. Her work has received numerous awards including two national Emmys, a New York Emmy, the duPont-Columbia Gold Baton, the Gracie Award, the Sidney Hillman Prize, the Dateline Club’s Society of Professional Journalists’ First Amendment Award, the Harry Chapin Media Award, the Christopher Award, and honorable mention for the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award. Her early television career included stints as an associate producer for 60 Minutes, and as a producer the local New York programs The Eleventh Hour and Currents. She is a graduate of the State University of New York at Binghamton and holds a masters in journalism from Columbia University.
Chief Business Development Officer
Molly O’Brien is the CBDO of Fork Films, where she provides strategic leadership and oversight to new initiatives, development, mission based revenue generation, sustainability, and special projects. O’Brien brings with her over two decades of experience producing non-fiction television series, documentary features, shorts, and branded content. Her work as a producer has been featured on Netflix, FoxTV, PBS, Univision, PIVOT, TLC, ABC Family, LinkTV, Oxygen Network and Sundance Channel, and has premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, IDfA, and Full Frame Film Festival among others.
O’Brien was the founding producer of Sundance Institute’s Catalyst Initiative, an innovative annual convening between art and commerce, connecting creative investors to the most highly anticipated independent films in the country.
In 2000, O’Brien won a Primetime Emmy Award for Producing Outstanding Non-Fiction Program (American High, FOX), was nominated for the Primetime Emmy in 2001 (American High) and made a 2010 Sundance Institute Creative Producing Fellow (Cesar's Last Fast, PIVOT/Univision/Netflix). Additionally, she was the Supervising Producer for the branded short #Selfie, which won a Clio Image Award in 2014. O’Brien’s first documentary film, A Pig With Hair, was shortlisted for the Academy Awards in 1998. She lives in Brooklyn, NY.
Director of Operations
Sarah Feuquay came to Fork Films with a dual background in Production and Film Festival work. She has over 10 years of Production experience working across a diversity of projects, from indie narrative features to prime-time ABC News Specials, functioning in multiple roles including production coordinating, logistics, research, licensing, post-production, development and grant writing.
In addition, Sarah has worked both front and back of house positions at film festivals including the Tribeca Film Festival, Rooftop Films and DOC NYC. She holds a Masters Degree in Film Studies from Emory University and a BA in Film Production from Hunter College.