Established in 1999, the Spotlight Awards™ have brought together the BC Film community to celebrate the outstanding achievements of BC women in screen-based media. 

Awards will be presented at The Spotlight Awards Gala
March 7th 2013, 6:30pm at VIFF's Vancity Theatre
1181 Seymour St. Vancouver
Reception/ Film Screenings and Awards Ceremony/ Party
Purchase tickets here.


Woman of the Year Award

Tracey Friesen

This award is presented to a woman who has achieved significant success in the field of film or television, and who is recognized for mentoring other women in the industry. Tracey Friesen, former Executive Producer of the National Film Board at the Pacific and Yukon Centre (2007-2013), spearheaded the production of innovative and socially relevant documentaries, animation and original digital content. She is also a champion of emerging filmmaker initiatives in B.C.

 Presented by:

WIFTV Artistic Achievement Award

 Lara Mazur
This award honours a woman who demonstrates filmmaking excellence in the telling of women’s stories. For more than thirty years, Lara Mazur has been weaving stories together - sometimes straw into gold - and bringing out the best in writers, directors and filmmakers who rely on her editing skills, artistry and honest assessments

Presented by: 



Artistic Innovation Award 

Karen Lam

This award honours a woman who demonstrates vision, experimentation and innovation in the telling of women's stories in screen based media, and who has created a significant body of work in these forms. Karen Lam has been cited by the Horrorquest Film Festival as "having the balls to play" in the male-dominated world of horror filmmaking. Her short and feature films have been screened and lauded at festivals worldwide.

 Presented by:

Wayne Black Service Award 

Robyn Wiener

This award honours a woman with a ‘behind-the-scenes’ role and for her continued efforts within the film and television community. With 18 years experience, and more than 50 projects under her belt, independent producer Robyn Wiener launched synergy Cinema inc. in 2010 producing indie projects while also contributing her time to mentor, teach, and participate on juries, sharing generously her professional experience & expertise at every opportunity.


Honoured Friend Award 

Bill Hurst

This award recognizes a person who has played a significant role in supporting women in the industry and, although not a professional member, has promoted the success of the organization. During his tenure as a Content Analyst for Telefilm, Bill Hurst was responsible for helping to develop and nurture the careers of female directors in Western Canada over the past 20 years. He is one of the strongest advocates and supporters of women-driven projects within Telefilm.


Sharon Gibbon Lifetime Member Award 

Roslyn Muir

This award honours a member in recognition of her volunteer work with WIFTV advancing the organization’s goals in the BC film and television community. Roslyn Muir served on the WIFTV board in 2001-2003 as Secretary and President, then again in 2007-2010 as Treasurer in charge of sponsorship and Chair of the Vancouver Women in Film Festival. Being one of only three film festivals in Canada featuring women filmmakers, Roslyn ensured that the VWIFF continued to be available for women filmmakers in B.C.

 Presented by:

The Image Award is awarded to a female director or DOP for excellence in a recent short work that shows excellence in overall production value or a unique, visionary approach to the cinematography or storytelling. This year, the Image Award is given to three outstanding filmmakers:


Elle-Maija Tailfeathers

A young filmmaker who believes in the power of film to address important issues. In 2012, Maija wrote and directed A Red Girl’s Reasoning, a short film produced through Crazy8s. A graphic novel-inspired action film, A Red Girl’s Reasoning is the story of a kick-ass, motorcycle-driving First Nations vigilante getting justice for victims of racially-driven crimes that was denied them by the court system.



Jenn Strom

Jenn shares her passion and curiosity about art and culture through filmmaking. She wrote, directed and animated Assembly, an experimental short film that pays homage to the women filmmakers of NFB’s iconic Studio D. Assembly was created using a hybrid paint-on-glass, rotoscoping and digital compositing technique that Jenn designed. She created 1200 painted images on glass for the film, using black oil paint and markers.



Siobhan Devine

Siobhan's career has taken her from theatre to film to television. In 2012, Siobhan directed the short film OMG, a 10-min comedy about a teenager, a grandma and a cellphone. OMG is an inter-generational film about a 14-year old who thinks she’s at the top of the food chain when it comes to being misunderstood. When her parents become totally unreasonable about her hair, wardrobe and nearly 6000 texts per month, Kaylee turns to the one person who always understood her – G-Ma.



Leadership in Education Award 

Michèle Lonsdale Smith

This award recognizes Vision and Excellence in the teaching of screen-based media and for creating opportunities for and providing mentorship to women students. Michèle Lonsdale Smith is the Artistic Director and Co-Founder of the renowned Lyric School of Acting. As an acting coach and mentor, Michèle is one of the most sought-after acting coaches in Canada, and recently in the U.S. and U.K. She has helped to prepare artists for a variety of film and television roles on international productions.

Presented by:



Please Adjust Your Set Award

Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media

This award is presented by the WIFTV Advocacy committee and the team at, honours a person or organization who has made a major contribution to promote gender equity in film, television or screen based media. The Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media is the only research-based organization working within the media and entertainment industry to engage, educate, and influence the need for gender balance, reducing stereotyping and creating a wide variety of female characters for entertainment targeting children 11 and under.

 Presented by:



Lifetime Achievement Award

Haida Paul

For the first time, WIFTV is presenting the Spotlight Lifetime Achievement Award. Haida Paul is best known as a film and sound editor for dramatic and documentary films, although those who know her, love her and have worked with her will quickly remind you that she is also a teacher and mentor. Her commitment to human rights, including women’s rights, have made her a beloved and revered figure in our film community. Her courage and imagination, along with her technical skills, years of experience and poetic sensibility, combine to make Haida one of our national treasures.

Presented by:


Purchase tickets here.