Sundance Institute Names Nina Fialkow, Pete Nicks, Kimberly Steward, and Tessa Thompson to Board of Trustees

Park City, UT — October 19, 2023 – The nonprofit Sundance Institute today announced four newly appointed additions to the Institute’s Board of Trustees. Tessa Thompson, Pete Nicks, Nina Fialkow, and Kimberly Steward have joined the leaders who guide and steer the entire organization and also act in an advisory capacity. They add to the Institute’s Board of values-based leaders, building an enduring, evolving community for storytellers. The distinguished new Trustees will work closely with Board Chair Ebs Burnough and CEO Joana Vicente and bring invaluable experience. 

“As Sundance Institute continues to respond to the needs of independent artists, we welcome these new members of our Board, each of whom has an incredible commitment to independent film and a long history with the Institute,” said Sundance Institute Board Chair Ebs Burnough. “Together, the Board is poised to identify new and strengthened ways to uplift independent storytellers.”

“We are so pleased to have Tessa, Pete, Nina, and Kimberly join as Trustees on the Board of Sundance Institute. They bring expertise and valuable perspectives that will be meaningful as we continue to evolve as a cultural organization,” said Sundance Institute CEO Joana Vicente. 

Tessa Thompson is an award-winning actor and producer, Pete Nicks is an award-winning documentary filmmaker, Nina Fialkow is an award-winning producer, and Kimberly Steward is Academy Award-nominated producer, entrepreneur and philanthropist.

“Both the Sundance Film Festival and the Institute have served as an artistic home for me throughout my career.  I’m proud to expand this journey by joining the board to eagerly serve a community that has been so incredibly impactful to me and countless others,” said Tessa Thompson.

Pete Nicks added, “I drove out to my first Sundance in 1999 in what was likely a highly unreliable vehicle. But I made it and got to see my film school professor Jon Else hoist what was then known as the Filmmaker’s Trophy for his documentary Sing Faster: The Stagehands’ Ring Cycle. I was hooked and lucky enough to be invited over the years with my own films. I’m now beyond thrilled to join the board of trustees and play a role in the evolution of this magical organization.”

Kimberly Steward shared, “Sundance Institute is one of the most influential organizations that supports emerging creative talent. They have supported my career and company since its inception in 2013. I am honored to be a part of a community that provides resources and programs to incubate and curate diverse talent on-screen and off-screen.”

Nina Fialkow said, “As a longtime attendee of the Sundance Film Festival and supporter of the institute, I am thrilled to join the board of trustees and look forward to being fully engaged.”

They join current members on the Institute’s Board: Robert Redford, President & Founder; Ebs Burnough, Chair; Sean Bailey, Vice Chair; Gigi Pritzker, Vice Chair; Jason Blum, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Philipp Engelhorn, Caterina Fake, Jeanne Donovan Fisher, Robert J. Frankenberg, Patrick Gaspard, Donna Gruneich, Cindy Harrell Horn, Uzodinma Iweala, Amanda Kelso, Charles D. King, Lyn Davis Lear, Ann Lewnes, Wonya Lucas, Alejandro Ramírez Magaña, Shripriya Mahesh, Pat Mitchell, Bill Plapinger, Amy Redford, Geoffrey K. Sands, Nadine Schiff-Rosen, Barry Tyerman, and Lulu Wang. 


NINA FIALKOW is an Oscar, BAFTA, and Emmy Award-winning producer and a member of Impact Partners, a New York-based film funding group focused on telling stories around social justice. She and her husband David Fialkow also have a production entity, New Lane Media.

Nina served as Chair of the Massachusetts Cultural Council from 2016 until June 2023, an appointment by Governor Charlie Baker. Nina and her husband David have played a direct role in launching the Transmedia Storytelling Initiative at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), which will teach media-based storytelling from film through augmented reality. In addition, she is on the International Council for The Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government. She also serves on the National Committee for Performing Arts at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. where she sits on the Executive Committee. 

PETE NICKS is an Emmy Award-winning cinematographer, producer, and director known for his immersive cinema vérité Oakland trilogy. His critically acclaimed feature documentary The Waiting Room won an Independent Spirit Award and was shortlisted for an Academy Award in 2012. The Force, the second in the trilogy explores the interconnected narratives of health care, criminal justice and education, and won the 2017 Sundance Directing Prize. Homeroom, the final film in the trilogy, won the inaugural Jonathan Oppenheim Editing Award at the 2021 Sundance Film Festival. His most recent film, Stephen Curry: Underrated, about the rise of NBA superstar Stephen Curry, premiered at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival. Nicks co-founded Proximity Media with Ryan Coogler and oversees the Nonfiction Division. He is the recipient of the SFFS/KRF screenwriting grant and a United States Artists Fellow. He received his B.A. from Howard University and his Masters from UC Berkeley. 

KIMBERLY STEWARD is an Academy Award-nominated producer, entrepreneur and philanthropist. Steward produced the six-time Academy Award nominated Manchester By The Sea; Luca Guadagnino’s Suspiria; The True Adventures Of Wolfboy; Topside which premiered at SXSW and the Venice Film Festival; Secret Life Of Bees (theatre); Sing Street (theatre); the Afro-centric documentaries Opposite Field and Through A Lens Darkly: Black Photographers and The Emergence Of A People.

Most recently she produced The Accidental Getaway Driver, which won the US Dramatic Directing Award at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival and The Vanishings at Caddo Lake, which was produced with M. Night Shyamalan.

In 2023, Kimberly and the K Period Media Foundation partnered with Blumhouse and collaborated with Sundance to launch the Screamwriters Fellowship. Kimberly proudly serves on the boards of the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, One Community, Ava DuVernay’s Array Alliance, the Fresh Air Fund, and the Ubuntu Council of the Charlize Theron Africa Outreach Project.

TESSA THOMPSON is an award-winning actor and producer. She most recently reprised her role as ‘Bianca’ in Creed III directed by Michael B. Jordan. In 2020, Thompson starred in Amazon Prime’s Sylvie’s Love, which she Executive Produced. In 2021, Thompson starred in the indie film, Passing, which debuted at the Sundance Film Festival and she also Executive Produced. Thompson’s past credits include Thor: Love and Thunder, Creed, Creed II, Men in Black: International, Thor: Ragnarok, Avengers: Endgame, Little Woods, Annihilation, Sorry to Bother You, Selma, Dear White People, and Westworld.

In 2019, Thompson was featured on the cover of TIME magazine as a trailblazer and “Leader of the Next Generation.” Her upcoming project includes starring in the title role of ‘Hedda Gabler’ in Nia DaCosta’s film Hedda for MGM’s Orion Pictures and Plan B.

With these additions, the Sundance Institute board comprises 32 people, 14 of whom self-identify as BIPOC.  The board is 44% men and 56% women.

Sundance Institute

About the Sundance Institute

As a champion and curator of independent stories, the nonprofit Sundance Institute provides and preserves the space for artists across storytelling media to create and thrive. Founded in 1981 by Robert Redford, the Institute’s signature Labs, granting, and mentorship programs, dedicated to developing new work, take place throughout the year in the U.S. and internationally. Sundance Collab, a digital community platform, brings a global cohort of working artists together to learn from each other and Sundance Advisors and connect in a creative space, developing and sharing works in progress. The Sundance Film Festival and other public programs connect audiences and artists to ignite new ideas, discover original voices, and build a community dedicated to independent storytelling. Through the Sundance Institute artists programs we have supported such projects as Beasts of the Southern Wild, The Big Sick, Bottle Rocket, Boys Don’t Cry, Boys State, Call Me By Your Name, Clemency, CODA, Drunktown’s Finest, The Farewell, Fire of Love, Flee, The Forty-Year-Old Version, Fruitvale Station, Get Out, Half Nelson, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, Hereditary, Honeyland, The Infiltrators, The Last Black Man in San Francisco, Little Woods, Love & Basketball, Me and You and Everyone We Know, Mudbound, Nanny, Navalny, O.J.: Made in America, One Child Nation, Pariah, Raising Victor Vargas, Requiem for a Dream, Reservoir Dogs, RBG, Sin Nombre, Sorry to Bother You, The Souvenir, Strong Island, Summer of Soul (…or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised), Swiss Army Man, Sydney, A Thousand and One, Top of the Lake, Walking and Talking, Won’t You Be My Neighbor?, and Zola. Through year-round artist programs, the Institute also nurtured the early careers of artists such Paul Thomas Anderson, Wes Anderson, Gregg Araki, Darren Aronofsky, Lisa Cholodenko, Ryan Coogler, Nia DaCosta, The Daniels, David Gordon Green, Miranda July, James Mangold, John Cameron Mitchell, Kimberly Peirce, Boots Riley, Ira Sachs, Quentin Tarantino, Taika Waititi, Lulu Wang, and Chloé Zhao. Support Sundance Institute in our commitment to uplifting bold artists and powerful storytelling globally by making a donation at Join  Sundance Institute on Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, X (formerly Twitter), and YouTube.

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