Visual Effects Society Announces Special 2023 Honorees – Distinguished VFX Practitioners to be Recognized This Fall

Los Angeles, CA (August 21, 2023) – Today, the Visual Effects Society (VES), the visual effects industry’s professional global honorary society, announced the Society’s newest Lifetime members and this year’s recipient of the VES Founders Award. The honorees will be celebrated at a special event in October.

Oscar-winning VFX Supervisor and founding VES member Tim McGovern was named recipient of the 2023 VES Founders Award. The Society designated archivist and curator Sandra Joy Aguilar; producer and AMPAS Governor Brooke Breton, VES; VFX artist agent and executive Bob Coleman; and Tim McGovern with Lifetime VES memberships. Additional honorees to be announced.

“Our VES honorees represent a group of exceptional artists, innovators and professionals who have had a profound impact on the field of visual effects, our industry and the Society,” said VES Board Chair Lisa Cooke. “We are proud to recognize those who helped shape our shared legacy and continue to inspire future generations of VFX practitioners.”

Founders Award recipient and Lifetime VES Member: Tim McGovern for his sustained contributions to the art, science or business of visual effects and meritorious service to the Society. An acclaimed Visual Effects Supervisor and Creative Director, McGovern began his career at the inception of digital/computer visual effects, in the otherwise analog VFX industry, doing award-winning, groundbreaking work in VFX and Computer Animation. In addition to winning an Academy Award for Digital Visual Effects for Total Recall, he garnered five Clios, a Hugo and a Mobius award. He was a founding member of Sony Pictures ImageWorks, and ran it as Senior VFX Supervisor, as well as the SVP of Creative and Technical Affairs.

Since leaving Sony, McGovern has worked as an independent Visual Effects Supervisor and filmmaker and has shot for films all over the world. He has supervised VFX for Hollywood Films in Mumbai, and now works at DNEG Mumbai, while also serving as Chief Creative Officer at Whisper Pictures, a development and production company focused on animated family films.

McGovern has played a number of key leadership roles with the VES over the last 20 years. He has been a member of the global Board of Directors for almost 20 years and has served as the Board’s Vice Chair, as a founding Co-Chair of the VES Awards Committee and member of the Virtual Production Committee. McGovern’s insights and tireless volunteer leadership have been key to the Society’s flourishing global expansion as the founding Chair of the VES Committee for Outreach to Developing Regions. He has greatly contributed to the organization’s growth in multiple regions on four continents, including working with VES members to form Sections in Washington State, Georgia, France, Germany, India and assisting to help Montreal and Toronto achieve Section-hood. VES 2023 Honorees vol1

Lifetime VES Member: Sandra Joy Aguilar for meritorious service to the Society and the global industry. Aguilar is a renowned archivist and curator, who currently oversees metadata and indexing at University of Southern California’s Shoah Foundation – The Institute for Visual History and Education, an online educational resource which showcases video life histories of individuals who survived the Holocaust or other genocides. She previously served as Digital Curator at CBS Digital, Director of Archives for USC School of Cinematic Arts’ Warner Bros. and Moving Image Archives and Media Librarian at Industrial Light & Magic, where she served as the company’s first archivist for a 150,000-item post-production visual effects archive and reference library. Aguilar has played a pivotal role in developing the VES library, digital museum and archive projects for the past 20 years. She has had a long tenure on the VES global Board of Directors and as Co-Chair of the VES Archives Committee, and most recently is serving as a consultant on the forthcoming VES Roth Museum of Visual Effects and as a member of the Tech History Subcommittee of the Science and Technology Council of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Lifetime VES Member: Brooke Breton, VES for meritorious service to the Society and the global industry. Breton has been principally involved in a wide variety of prominent live action films, animated films, television series and theme park projects which have received Academy, BAFTA, Emmy, Annie and VES awards and nominations. Recently, Breton served as a producer for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences Museum, where she focused on modern filmmaking techniques and acquisitions. During her career, Breton played an instrumental role in launching James Cameron’s effects house Digital Domain, where she served as Senior Vice President of Production, and was Senior Production Executive and in-house producer for Illumination Entertainment, where she produced the film content for the Annie and VES Award-winning Despicable Me theme park attraction, Minion Mayhem. Breton is an AMPAS governor representing the Visual Effects Branch and chair of the Academy’s Education and Outreach Committee, is a VES Fellow and has served as a three-term member on the VES global Board of Directors.

Lifetime VES Member: Bob Coleman for meritorious service to the Society and the global industry. Coleman is the President and Founder of Digital Artists Agency. With a roster of VFX talent that includes Academy Award, VES Award and Emmy Award winning artisans, DAA is recognized as a preeminent below-the-line agency, exclusively representing VFX artists for feature films, television and commercials. His tenure working in film production, visual effects and post production spans over 40 years and includes senior leadership positions with Victor Duncan Inc., Optimus Inc., Editel Chicago, Lucas Arts, Skywalker Sound, Digital Magic, and Virgin Digital Studios entities 525 and Virgin Television de Mexico. Coleman has served on the VES Awards Committee for 23 years, including nine years as Chair. He has had a long tenure on the VES global Board of Directors and its Executive Committee, as well as providing significant contributions and leadership for the VES Business Labor and Law, Benefits, VES Summit and Membership Committees.

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