Black History Month is a time to reflect on the progress that has been made in creating a more inclusive and diverse world, as well as the work that still needs to be done. As part of this year’s celebrations, ReDefine and DNEG hosted an internal panel open to all staff and titled ‘Blackout: Navigating Barriers to our Identity in the Workplace’.
Organised by our Black Voices Group, the panel was moderated by Agapi Gessesse, award-winning, influential and fearless changemaker named 2020 Top Black Woman to Watch in Canada, and Executive Director of the CEE Center for Young Black Professionals in Toronto.
The panel featured (from left to right): Corey Turner (Executive Producer, DNEG Los Angeles), Denis-Jose Francois (DFX Supervisor, DNEG Animation) Doe Sebanakitta (User Experience Researcher, DNEG Vancouver), Victoria Adeyeri (Software Developer, Infrastructure, DNEG London) and Luis Placid (Head of Real-time Technologies, DNEG Vancouver).
During the panel, the speakers discussed their personal career journeys and experiences breaking into the film & television industry, while also emphasising the need for increased representation of Black communities in the field.
Another important theme that emerged during the panel was the importance of Black perspectives and representation in emerging technologies and research, and how tools like Unreal Engine are helping to democratise storytelling and dismantling barriers of access, leading to a more diverse and inclusive industry.
In addition to recognizing Black excellence and celebrating Black History, the speakers reflected on their personal and professional experiences that have helped to move the needle for Black representation and empowerment in the industry, as well as future ‘Black History-making’ moments that we can all build towards in order to create a more inclusive and empowering world.
The entire ReDefine team wishes to extend a huge and heartfelt thank you to Agapi Gessesse for her excellent moderation of this insightful session.
Finally, a warm thank you to Corey, Denis-Jose, Doe, Victoria and Luis for taking the time to share their experiences and insights.
Click here to find out more about Equity, Diversity and Inclusion at DNEG and ReDefine. And if you are interested in joining our team and building your career at ReDefine, check out our open positions.
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