There once was a scientist named Jane. She ran around in tropical forests and western mountains, trying to understand a fundamental building block of life: carbon. Jane's science and teaching adventures led to one unexpected outcome, the realization that scientists have a very hard time showing and telling others what they do. Jane decided to do something about it. She brought some talented filmmakers (who were scientists themselves!) to teach her students how to make short films about their research. One of the filmmakers was named Mo and Jane and Mo hit it off instantly. They talked about science and filmmaking and wondered why there weren't more female filmmakers in the world. There was so much overlap between the challenges facing women scientists and women filmmakers. Thus, an idea was born - Hey Girl Productions.
Not long after, Jane moved to Washington DC to find out how to make science more impactful. Hey Girl Productions could wait, there was science policy to be done! But the universe had a different plan. In the first week in DC, Jane met another scientist named Yula, a kindred spirit. Yula had spent years chasing vultures in central and southeast Asia to figure out why their populations were crashing. In the process, Yula made some very cool films with the Cornell Ornithology Lab. Yula and Jane got to talking and it wasn't long before Yula joined Hey Girl Productions.
Jane Zelikova (the heart)
Jane Zelikova is a scientist, producer, biker, skier, chaser of frisbees, climber of rocks, adventurer, budding filmmaker, avid reader, bad surfer, and obsessive consumer of gummy bears. With a PhD in ecology, Jane is interested in how the world works, is driven by her insatiable FOMO, and truly believes everyone has an amazing, magical, beautiful story inside of them. She is most likely to film everything.
Yula Kapetanakos (the brains)
Yula Kapetanakos is a scientist, producer, hiker, lover of nature, chef, gardner, traveler, wildlife conservationist, visionary, and all around inspiration. Yula has ecology and evolution in her blood and is driven to find innovative ways to protect wildlife, tell stories about conservation and bring an eye for art and design into the world of science. She is most likely to remember to order lunch.
Mo has been sneezed on by a whale, stampeded by bison and almost mistaken for salmon by hungry grizzly bears, all of which she took as great compliments, considering they let her live to spy on wildlife for another day. Mo is a filmmaker and photographer, residing in Gunnison CO. You can see her impressive work at morganheim.com.
Sarah is a modern Renaissance woman. She is a PhD-trained wildlife biologist and award-winning producer with extensive experience in broadcast and digital filmmaking, from development through post-production. She has traveled the globe documenting a wide variety of wildlife, ranging from golden eagles to hedgehogs. Sarah lives in Washington, D.C. with her Brussels Griffon, Minky. You can find her on Instagram @sj_and_minky.
Sophia has an MFA in Science and Natural History Filmmaking and a BA in Biology, merging the scientific method with art and storytelling. She is currently an Earth Science Multimedia Fellow at NASA, where she is the producer and editor. Sophia's spirit animal is a squirrel.
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