Born in a town outside Havana, Juan Carlos Zaldívar was a teenager when he came to the U.S. with his family during the Mariel boatlift in 1980. He earned a B.F.A. and M.F.A. in film studies at New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts and subsequently taught there. His thesis film, The Story of the Red Rose, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, where he was invited as a juror, and he became a Fellow of the Writers’ Lab in 1998. Zaldívar’s second short, Palingenesis, was nominated for a Student Academy Award. Currently residing in Miami, Zaldívar is a member of the National Association of Latino Independent Producers and the director and programmer of Miami’s first Documentary Film Festival, entitled “The Florida Room.”
Producer Nicole Betancourt is the Executive Director of Media Rights, a nonprofit organization that promotes the use of media for action and dialogue on social issues. Betancourt wrote, directed and produced Before You Go, a documentary about her relationship with her gay father who had AIDS, which premiered on HBO in 1996. It won numerous awards including an Emmy and a Golden Spire at the San Francisco International Film Festival, and received two CableAce nominations. She produced and directed Changing Course, exploring the effects of Hurricane Mitch on Central America, and was a field producer on The Quiet Revolution for Media for International Development and SCETV. She serves on the board of New York Women in Film and Television.