New York Festivals Television & Film Awards Grand Jury 2020 Interview profiles prominent award-winning Broadcast executives from around the globe. As industry leaders, they understand the elements that go into creating compelling award-winning nonfiction content.
Joan Cartan-Hansen has been a producer/reporter/writer/host for Idaho Public Television since 1988. Joan is the lead producer/host for "Science Trek and a producer/reporter/writer for "Outdoor Idaho." In addition, she writes and produces a number of documentaries and has contributed pieces to "The PBS NewsHour." Joan has won a number of awards including several regional Emmy® Awards, gold medals at the New York Festivals, Tellys, CINE Golden Eagles, Platinum prizes at Worldfest. In 2013, Joan was inducted into the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences-NW’s Silver Circle for her contributions to the industry.
NYF: How do you think being an award winner yourself will help evaluate this year’s submission?
Joan Cartan-Hansen: I don’t think being a winner in and of itself helps me evaluate submissions. Not to say I am not honored to win, I am! I hope to win again someday too. I suspect 30+ years of experience and a real desire to learn from what I see helps me when I evaluate. I am always impressed by the talent and creativity of festival entrants.
NYF: Where do you see the industry evolving in the next 5 years?
Joan Cartan-Hansen: Streaming and the new possibilities of NextGen technology will undoubtedly change our business. I am also excited by the educational opportunities of 360°, VR, and AR.
NYF: What are the biggest challenges facing content creators in today’s world?
Joan Cartan-Hansen: I think the biggest challenge is remaining true to the need to tell a good story, to hold to ethical values, and to figure out how to distribute what you create. I live happily in the world of PBS and my local station, but I am also a Trustee for the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. That organization is also wrestling with how to honor excellence in a changing content world.
NYF: What would you love to do as your next project?
Joan Cartan-Hansen: I produce content for my Science Trek (sciencetrek.org) site for elementary age kids and educators and plan to keep doing it, but I would love to produce a documentary or two. One already in the works, when I have time, and one is a dream project about amnosia. There are lots of people who have lost their sense of smell, but society doesn’t really understand the full impact. With all the other diseases and conditions in the world, this one doesn’t seem very important, until it happens to you or someone you know. It upends the sufferer’s whole life. There needs to be more information about there.