Established in 1997 as the Black Women Film Preservation Project, the organization was founded to preserve the voice of Black women in film and increase the numbers of women of all cultures in the entertainment industry. Rebranded as The Black Women Film Network (BWFN), our mission is to empower women of color to “tell the untold stories” through feature films, documentaries, television and digital media. We provide effective programs that develop film entrepreneurs, engage new audiences and bring awareness to the positive portrayal of women of color.
Founded by Sheryl Riley Gripper
Sheryl Riley Gripper is Founder and executive director of the Black Women Film Network, an organization that prepares women for work in the film industry. The organization has given thousands of dollars in scholarships to women pursuing careers in film, broadcast and related areas.
A multi-Emmy Award winner, Gripper was Vice-President, Community Relations, for WXIA-TV, 11Alive and WATL-TV 36, for 29 years. She is a Community Relations Consultant for WXIA-TV, 11Alive and Atlanta Technical College. A graduate of Spelman College and Georgia State University, she holds Masters Degrees in Education and Film.
Additionally, Gripper was Founding Executive Director of the BronzeLens Film Festival, a festival that promotes diversity in film. She is also founder of Rosey Posey Pictures, LLC, a company that produces film and digital media that encourage and inspire.
The mother of three, she is the wife of Jeff Gripper, Atlanta’s First World Karate Champion. As a member of Elizabeth Baptist Church, she serves in the Intercessory Prayer and Encouragers ministries. Gripper wrote and produced the documentary, I Didn’t Make Him, God Did, the story of three media moms who lose their adult children to murder. Her most recent work is a short film, choreopoem entitled “In the Last Days.”
Why We Exist:
We educate, empower and inform. We celebrate, connect and cultivate.
A 501(c)3 non-profit, BWFN provides student scholarships, hosts screenings and workshops, and honors individuals who have excelled in this difficult industry. We prepare women for work in the film industry. Our organization has given thousands of dollars in scholarships to women pursuing careers in film, broadcast and related areas.