One of the many roles of the Colorado Office of Film, Television and Media (COFTM) is making connections between filmmakers and organizations. This past year, COFTM coordinated a partnership between the National Governors Association (NGA), the Colorado Film School (CFS) and now-deputy film commissioner Mariel Rodriguez-McGill to create a documentary on the history and impact of the NGA, airing at their summer convention this year.
In the Spring of 2016, COFTM facilitated the production of the documentary with Rodriguez-McGill and the Colorado Film School to create a film educating the public about the NGA. The NGA is the only bipartisan organization of, by and for US governors, based in Washington, DC. The group has two meetings a year, and their Center for Best Practices acts as a think tank on the best information for governor policy. They also have a Corporate Partners program, giving governors access to change-makers in the private-sector.
At the time the film was commissioned, Rodriguez-McGill was a producer and director at Rocky Mountain PBS. She was asked not only to produce and direct the hour-long documentary, but to give local students from the Colorado Film School a chance to work on the project.
Together, Rodriguez-McGill and her team of students and faculty traveled to Des Moines, Iowa to film the 2016 NGA Summer Meeting, where they spent a week of production interviewing Governors, staff and NGA employees and filming numerous panels and presentations, while discovering the role the NGA plays with the governors of the US.
In addition, Rodriguez-McGill traveled to Washington, DC in the winter to film the biennial 2016 Seminar for New Governors and heard first-hand from governors-elect how the NGA creates connections and prepares them for the first day on the job. Over 30 governors, staff and NGA associates were interviewed for the film. Students were also involved in the post-production process.
“Working with the Colorado Film School students was incredible,” said Rodriguez-McGill. “The talent and professionalism of the fifteen students in attendance blew me away.”
Governors Get it Done recounts the history and current relevance of the NGA, now over 100 years old. The film premiered this July in Rhode Island, and will soon air locally and nationally on PBS.