Patricia Swinney Kaufman, longtime head of film and television development for New York State, has been named Commissioner of NYC’s Mayor’s Office Of Media and Entertainment.
She succeeds Anne del Castillo, who leaves MOME for a new role as senior advisor at major arts funder, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs.
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Kaufman, a well-known voice in New York government and film circles, currently serves as first deputy commissioner at MOME, overseeing strategies and support for theater, music, advertising, publishing, and digital media.
She served for 19 years as executive director of the New York State Governor’s Office for Motion Picture and Television Development, and as deputy commissioner of Empire State Development, helping craft and shepherd legislation that created the state’s film production tax credit. She also worked to create the standalone post-production tax credit and commercial production incentive programs.
Kaufman was president of the Association of Film Commissioners International (AFCI) between 2003 and 2007. She sits on the board of the Hamptons International Film Festival and the New York Production Alliance. (She is married to Lloyd Kaufman, co-founder of Troma Entertainment of The Toxic Avenger and Tromeo And Juliet fame.)
In her new role, she reports to Deputy Mayor for Housing, Economic Development and Workforce, Maria Torres-Springer. She takes the helm of MOME at a painful time for the entertainment industry amid ongoing strikes by writers and actors and with most film and TV production at a standstill.
“I am extremely grateful to Mayor Adams for trusting me with this enormous responsibility. It’s an honor and a privilege to serve the mayor, New Yorkers, and the creative community,” said Kaufman. “I look forward to continuing the agency’s work of supporting, strengthening, and diversifying New York’s media and entertainment industries, which are integral to the city’s culture and economy. Collaborating with our industry partners and communities will be a core vision of this agency, and together, we expect great opportunities for New York and New Yorkers.”
Kaufman assumed the chief MOME role quietly in an announcement from the city in late June of some senior administration appointments by Mayor Eric Adams.
In an announcement today, MOME unveiled a $1.8 million grant extension for the NYC Women’s Fund for Media, Music and Theatre that brings the city’s total investment in women-led creative projects to $9.3 million. MOME and the New York Foundation for the Arts also opened applications for the program’s fifth round of grants, and noted upcoming NYC premiere dates for Women’s Fund recipients.
“We are thrilled to announce the extension of the NYC Women’s Fund for Media, Music and Theatre for an incredible 5th cycle, and celebrate the accomplishments of past recipients whose work is shining a light on NYC as a global creative capital and providing new jobs in the sector,” said Kaufman. “When NYC’s creative industries thrive, NYC thrives, so we must continue to support those that are telling impactful, humorous, thoughtful and diverse stories, and contributing to the city’s $150 billion creative economy.”
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