Board Members

Independent Film Arizona Board Members

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Elisa Cota-Francis

President

A Southern AZ Native and Graduate of the University of Arizona, Elisa  Cota-Francis is an award-winning independent filmmaker. She has been in the film and television industry for over 25 years and is currently the CEO of ArcLight Pictures & Vauntify. Most notably Elisa is a vocal and outspoken advocate for the Film industry in Arizona including highlighting the amazing amount of talented cast and crew members that reside in the state.

Erin Benzenhoeher

Vice President

Erin started her film life at Pima Community College in Tucson, Arizona where she obtained her associates degree in film production. From there, Erin went on to study at the Chapman University School of Film & Television in Orange, California where she earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts in film production. Erin has worked on a variety of projects including feature films, short films, web series, infomercials, and commercials. She is affectionately nicknamed JOAT as she is a bit of a “Jill of all trades”. She is a director, producer, and editor, amongst many other things, and is always willing to jump in with both feet to see a project succeed. In 2012 she formed Rising Up Entertainment with the goal of making films that deal with themes of people rising above whatever challenges life throws at them. Her passion is to make projects that represent underrepresented minorities including women, racial and ethnic groups and members of the LGBT+ community.

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Jeff Brack

Secretary

Jeff is a Director, Writer and Producer of short films, a television pilot and feature film screenplays. Attended the University of Arizona in Tucson, Arizona, receiving a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Film & Television. Commercial Producer at FOX/UPN Television in Tucson. Wrote and developed two feature films scripts, Nevada racing flick "Flat Out" and romcom "Window Girls". Short film, "Willow Creek", was very well received at numerous film festivals (Hermosa Beach International Film Festival, Arizona International Film Festival, Sedona International Film Festival, San Tan Short Film Festival), was a semifinalist for the Angelus Awards, and viewed extensively at online portals, like ifilm. Developed and produced the pilot for teen drama series, "The Academy". Joined some friends and colleagues to launch a highly successful premium dine-in movie theater chain, RoadHouse Cinemas, spearheading marketing and production of original screen content. Currently in development of a new feature film project.

Gabriella Trejo

Treasurer

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Rebecca Kososkie

Board Member at Large

Rebecca serves as the Executive Vice President of the Marana Chamber of Commerce  and has been with the Marana Chamber of Commerce since 2010. She has succeeded in increasing membership and retention annually. She has developed many programs, interest groups, and committees unique to this chamber to speak to and promote the wide range of talents of the chamber members. This includes being the only chamber in Arizona with an annual Health Career Scholarship fund awarded each year since 2015. She helped develop the Film & Multimedia Arts Committee, the only one of any chambers in Arizona. This followed with a Grant from the Arizona Commerce Authority that resulted in a bimonthly podcast and a recording studio in the chamber offices that is free for members. Rebecca also is President of an event marketing firm, First Class Marketing, Inc.  that she started in 1994. Her company partners with national associations and sports teams at events.

Laura Cortelyou

Board Member at Large

As the former head of the Town of Marana Film Office Laura served as the Town's Tourism and Marketing Manager. In this role, Laura oversaw Marana’s efforts to position itself as the premier destination in Southern Arizona for visitors seeking all kinds of adventures. Laura had joined the Town of Marana from the Tucson Museum of Art, where she was Director of Marketing and Public Relations. She holds a master's degree from Fielding Graduate University in Human and Organizational Development and a bachelor’s degree from UC Santa Barbara in the History of Art and Architecture. Previously, she directed marketing for Forester Media, Inc., a publisher of civil and environmental engineering journals, and ABC-CLIO, an academic history publisher. She is also a member of the Southern Arizona Attractions Alliance.

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Edgar Ybarra

Board Member at Large

Edgar Ybarra is a two-time Emmy award winner, 18-year broadcast TV news veteran Photojournalist/Editor (currently at NBC affiliate KVOA News 4 Tucson) and an award winning independent short/feature film Writer/Director.  Born and raised in the suburban Los Angeles, Ca area, Ybarra has long since set his sights on producing narrative market value content results that are both compelling and substantive, and will continue to do so unwaveringly.

Alan Williams

Board Member at Large

A Tucson based indie filmmaker, Alan Williams studied film production at the University of Arizona. He went on to direct numerous music videos, short films and other projects, including the short "featurette,"  On A Clear Day (2007), the experimental short The Human Condition (2008) and El Patron (2018) and his documentary on Tucson's infamous 4th Avenue, The Avenue (2011), all of which enjoyed recognition on the festival circuit. He was a Producer on the feature film "The Drama Club" (2017), directed the pilot for a series titled You Only Live Twice (2019) and was an Associate Producer on the feature film Dustwun (2020).  Currently, Alan is developing his feature film Zero Saved, a gritty tale based on his experiences working for two plus decades as a paramedic in a busy EMS system, his sci-fi thriller The Sapien Index and he just directed a feature length psychological thriller called 8000 Feet Up (working title) which is in post-production.

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Anne Dalton

Board Member at Large

Anne Dalton transitioned from being a freelance photojournalist to filmmaker when she produced the film, “The Price of Silence,” on domestic minor sex trafficking in 2011 to raise awareness of this national problem. She went on to produce other short docs focusing on community life in Tucson, AZ with an emphasis on art and health, including the award-winning “Puppies & Poses.” In 2015, she established the IFA Production CoLab to provide training and hands-on experience for beginners in film production. She currently works as a free-lance director and serves on the board of Independent Film Arizona. Her most recent production, “Feeding our Souls,” was premiered at the Tucson International Jewish Film Festival in January, 2021. In 2019, she added film acting to her work and has appeared in five films to date.