Judy Trotter | Educator of the Year Award in Community Service – Career Schools
Hometown: Los Angeles
For her dedication to bringing her students real-world experience and exposure to Hollywood industry professionals, all while serving the community, Judy Trotter, Lecturer, Brooks Institute in Santa Barbara, California won Career Education’s Educator of the Year in the Community Service category for Career Schools.
Judy’s work in the motion picture community in Southern California has afforded her students opportunities to create short films and interact with current producers, editors and writers. Her students benefit from her experience and connections as a longtime member of the Directors Guild of America and an Assistant Director in Hollywood.
As an instructor for Brooks Institute, Judy forged a partnership with the Santa Barbara International Film Festival. Through this partnership, students have the opportunity to create a short film, which the festival submits for a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts.
It also allows students to enter the 10-10-10 Student Filmmaking competition, which takes 5 High School and 5 College teams and puts these students in competition to create a 10-minute film that screens 10 days later. Under her leadership, Brooks Institute has won the college level competition four years in a row.
At this year’s festival, Brooks students also had the opportunity to shoot video of Oprah Winfrey, Cate Blanchett, Robert Redford, Leonardo DiCaprio, Martin Scorsese, Bruce Dern and many other actors and filmmakers. They also were invited to shoot various industry panel discussions. In the process they met industry professionals and learned film-making techniques.
The National Endowment of the Arts grant money allows the festival to run several events that the Brooks students also document. One called “Mike’s Field Trip to the Movies” brings 4,000 5th- and 6th-grade students from 36 schools around Santa Barbara County – many of them low income — to the Arlington Theatre in Santa Barbara to watch an academy award winning animated film. This year the movie was Frozen, and the Oscar-winning directors were there and spoke with the students. Brooks students were invited to speak with these award-winning filmmakers as well as film them.
Nominees in the Community Service category serve as a positive representative of their institution within the local and extended community.
Judy Trotter earned a bachelor’s degree in Theatre Arts/Art from California State University, Northridge in 1974. A member of The Director’s Guild of America for 25 years and a working member of the film industry for over 35 years as an Associate Director, Assistant Director, Stage Manager and Producer, Trotter has worked on Grammy-winning music videos for such artists as Gwen Stefani, Eminem, Bon Jovi, Rod Stewart, Stevie Wonder, Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg, Luis Miguel and the Fugees as well as live all-star concerts with artists including Chuck Berry, B.B. King and Mick Fleetwood. Trotter has worked on hundreds of national television commercials, many of which have won Clio awards for advertisers such as, Kodak, AT& T, Toyota, Honda, McDonald’s, Proctor and Gamble, as well as several seasons of promos for CBS television shows. She has worked on 13 miniseries’ and movies made for television, as well as being the associate producer for two Emmy-nominated television movies and one Emmy-winning children’s made-for-television movie. Trotter recently produced a series of 21 episodes of a web series called Blue Belle, which screened at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival and won best show and best cinematography at the Los Angeles Web Film Festival. She is co-owner of Trotter Productions, a film company that shoots commercials, industrial films and music videos. Trotter has been a part of the Brooks Institute community for 15 years, and a faculty member for the last ten years.