Wild & Scenic Film Festival
313 Railroad Ave. Suite 101
Nevada City, CA 95959
Phone: (530) 265-5961
Fax: (530) 265-6232
Melinda Booth, Film Festival Director, (530) 265-5961 ext. 202
Melinda Booth has been the Festival Director for the Wild & Scenic Film Festival, an environmental and adventure festival that uses film to inspire activism, since 2011. Wild & Scenic kicks off in Nevada City, CA in support of river conservation and activism work undertaken by the South Yuba River Citizens League. Next, it travels the globe partnering with more than 150 organizations to increase the groundswell for the environmental movement as a whole and support local campaigns. Before her passion for environmental conservation brought her to the festival, she focused her career on saving iconic species like bears, wolves, and salmon in the American West. Melinda holds a M.S. in Environmental Studies from the University of Montana, where she studied human-bear interactions in the wildland urban interface. Melinda’s publications span scientific journals, periodicals, and books. When not working, Melinda enjoys extreme tubing, hiking with her husband and two dogs and yurt improvement projects.
Stephanie Romanella, Wild & Scenic Film Festival Coordinator, (530) 265-5961 ext. 215
Stephanie was born and raised in New Jersey. She graduated from Rutgers University with an American History/Art History degree and a new found love of the outdoors, camping, hiking and mountain biking. After college, she got a job at MTV in Times Square (pretty much as far from history or the outdoors as one could be) but would still drive out west every year to vacation with her backpack and bike in tow.
She was eventually able to achieve a more harmonious work/life balance when she accepted a marketing job at Backpacker Magazine where she organized, produced and attended all types of fun outdoor events for folks locally and around the country. And she got to travel and experience these adventures herself, everything from backpacking and biking, to rock and ice climbing. She finally made it to California permanently after accepting a job in the marketing department at Gregory Mountain Products, where she focused on branding, strategic planning, market research and all aspects of the fun stuff too – working with non-profits, corporate and athlete sponsorships, online and print media, and being a hands-on brand ambassador.
Stephanie ultimately decided that Nevada County is what’s up and after spending many a weekend battling traffic on the way to Tahoe and the foothills from Sacramento, she left the city and moved to Grass Valley. She is psyched to join the Wild & Scenic Film Festival team and help support the area she lives and loves.
Jess Swigonski, Festival Liaison, (530) 265-5961 ext. 219
Equipped with a degree in Film Production and a natural affinity for the outdoors, Jess’s work with one of the nation’s premiere environmental and adventure film festivals has absolutely been a dream come true. Originally from Erie, PA, Jess moved to California after graduating from Allegheny College (Meadville, PA) in order to work for Wild & Scenic Film Festival as the Filmmaker Liaison. Her greatest passion is the art of story-telling. With a background in communications focusing in documentary film making and experience in executing multiple film festivals at college, Jess has always been intrigued by the stories of individuals, communities, events, creatures, places that often go untold. Jess feels honored to be a facilitator for the telling of some remarkable, vital, and timely stories.
Jess has now transitioned into the role of Festival Liaison, working more closely with the On Tour program and spreading the stories presented at Wild & Scenic far and wide in addition to her roles as Filmmaker Liaison for the home fest. She is growing accustomed to seeing the sunshine more than one month out of the year and is taking full advantage of all the new and exciting opportunities for outdoor adventure here in Nevada City – especially learning about and exploring the beloved Yuba River! Other than that, you can most definitely find her watching films, discovering music, dancing, dreaming, reveling in the time she gets to spend with the amazing and inspiring humans in California, and sitting on her stoop.
Johan Ehde, On Tour Manager, (530) 265-5961 ext. 223
Johan’s path in event production began early in life. Growing up, Johan worked eclectic events at his parent’s art gallery where he helped them plan, curate and interact with the public. In his teenage years, Johan began working for Del Rio Country Club as a member of their banquet staff. There he learned the process of planning, setting, hosting and breaking down an event in full. In his twenties, Johan began working as a freelance event professional for companies who produce large-scale music and art events in California, Nevada, Oregon, Canada and Portugal. Johan is currently the On Tour Manager for the Wild and Scenic Film Festival and is thrilled to be involved with SYRCL assisting in their efforts to protect the Yuba Watershed and inspire environmental activism globally.
Jenn Tamo, Community Engagement Manager, (530) 265-5961 ext. 201
Jenn, a Central Valley native, was raised in the small town of Oakdale on the Stanislaus River. Growing up, she was nestled between the coast of San Francisco and Sierra mountains of Yosemite. Her close proximity to these natural treasures afforded her the opportunity to explore California’s unique geography and cultivate a love of the outdoors.
One of Jenn’s passions is travel. In college, she was fortunate to spend a summer in Central America as a volunteer in Costa Rica. She helped implement low-cost sustainable agriculture and assisted with small-scale enterprise that benefited the local habitat and community. Jenn graduated from UC Berkeley with a degree in International Development. After university, she spent two summers in the backcountry of Yosemite which was the catalyst that launched her in search of stewardship roles in the Sierra Nevada. Jenn recently completed a year of service as SYRCL’s Stewardship Coordinator through the Sierra Nevada AmeriCorps Partnership . She is very excited to being staying in Nevada City with SYRCL as the River People Manager. In her spare time, if not experimenting in the kitchen, Jenn can be found hiking near a river or alpine lake.