The Paul Izbicki Award for Excellence in Media Education will be presented to Ron Bellamy on Saturday, June 14 during the Knoxville Film & Music Festival awards ceremony at Scruffy City Hall on Market Square.
For the past 19 years, Bellamy ran the Video Production Technology program — a program he founded in 1991 — at Pellissippi State Technical Community College. Bellamy developed the entire curriculum, taught as a professor, planned and implemented expansion of facilities (including a state-of-the-art high definition TV/sound production studio believed to be the first of its kind in Tennessee), wrote and co-wrote grants, and helped grow the Video Production Technology student population.
Prior to starting the Video Production Technology program at Pellissippi State, Bellamy served as Senior Writer and Producer for McDonnell-Douglas and as Media Specialist for the Missouri Department of Education at State Fair Community College. During his career, Bellamy produced approximately 300 short and long form informational, instructional and documentary projects in 35mm still, motion picture film, and video formats. He also produced and/or directed live and location CCTV events.
"Ron Bellamy embodies everything we envisioned when we created the Paul Izbicki Award for Excellence in Media Education," said Michael Samstag, Director of the Knoxville Film & Music Festival. "Ron invested a large part of his career to educating and training tomorrow's great media pros — and his work has impacted thousands of talented, young media students."
Bellamy is the first recipient of the Paul Izbicki Award for Excellence in Media Education. Named after Paul Izbicki, a beloved member of the Knoxville film and TV community who passed away last August at the age of 65. Izbicki had been in the field of media production longer than most of his colleagues had been alive. He took to the field with a passion after retiring from the military in the late 1960s and attending both the University of Miami and Boston College.
Izbicki was a world traveler who called Boston "home" for more than 20 years. He left a long and accomplished career there with Fidelity Investments to head the production department at Jewelry Television in 2001, where he stayed until 2005.
"Paul Izbicki was a guy who always had time to share what he knew with a smile and his snappy Boston wit," Samstag said. "Paul was a visionary, and he planted the seed that would eventually grow into the Knoxville Film & Music Festival. He was completely committed to media education, so we wanted the award named after him to reflect that same passion and commitment."
In East Tennessee, Izbicki was on the board and served as president of the community based TV & Film non-profit TIPTOE , which serves Knoxville's independent production community. He was also responsible for creating Knoxville's first 10-hour film festival in 2005 (which eventually became the Knoxville 24 Hour Film Festival). It was at this point that his efforts, expertise, and spirit began to transform a disconnected and stagnant community of filmmakers and independent production professionals into the thriving, collaborative and ultimately viable community of artists we see, enjoy and benefit from today.
The 2014 Knoxville Film & Music Festival — recognized as Knoxville's "indie" film and music event of the year — has been the largest to-date. With world premier movies, the popular "Band-Eat-Band" competition, the fifth annual Knoxville 24 Hour Film Festival, the Paul Izbicki Award for Excellence in Media Education, and special guests including the producers of the hit television show South Park, the Knoxville Film & Music Festival is now a national and international event with a focus on local East Tennessee talent.
All Knoxville Film & Music Festival details and tickets are available at http://www.KnoxvilleFilms.com.