Events

Palm Springs Women in Film & TV Announce Their First Honorees for the 2019 Broken Glass Gala Awards Luncheon

WHAT: Palm Springs Women in Film & TV will be holding their 11th annual Broken Glass Awards Luncheon fundraiser to honor extraordinary women who have broken through the glass ceiling, paving the way for others in entertainment, arts and philanthropy. Co-chairs for the 2019 event are Patti Gribow, Kim Waltrip and Kate Spates.

We are proud to announce the first in the lineup of 2019 BGA Honorees: Sierra McCormick, Rising Star Award; Lillana Rodriguez, Desert Diva Award; Melissa Neiderman, Humanitarian Award.

A special scholarship will be presented to a deserving local student college bound to major in arts, communications, or film in honor of the late Denise Dubarry-Hay, a longtime member of PSWIFT and past president.

WHEN: Monday, November 4, 2019

TIME: 11:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.

WHERE: Agua Caliente Casino Resort & Spa in Rancho Mirage: 32-250 Bob Hope Dr., Rancho Mirage, CA 92270

COST: General Ticket – $90.00 early bird special if tickets are purchased before August 31, 2019 and after that date $100.00 per ticket.

CONTACT: Tel: 760-574-1858 • Email: office@pswift.org

ABOUT THE HONOREES:

Sierra McCormick (Rising Star Award): Sierra McCormick was born in Asheville, NC and grew up in Palm Springs, CA. She began performing in film and television at a young age and had a number of roles on different network tv shows throughout the late 2000s, including Criminal Minds, Supernatural, Monk, and Curb Your Enthusiasm. As her career progressed, she worked on larger studio films including Land of the Lost and 20th Century Fox’s Ramona & Beezus. From 2011 to 2013 she was a series regular on the tv show ANT Farm, and in 2014 starred in the horror film Some Kind of Hate, for which she was nominated for the Fangoria Chainsaw Award. Following this, she worked in many genre-spanning features including Lionsgate’s The Honor List and Lifetime’s Sorority Nightmare. She is starring in the upcoming film The Vast of Night, which won the Slamdance Film Festival audience award and the Overlook Film Festival grand jury prize, as well as the ensemble horror piece V.F.W.

Liliana Rodriguez (Desert Diva): Coachella Valley native Liliana Rodriguez cut her teeth as a film projectionist before joining the film festival world in 2013. She became the Program Manager at the Palm Springs Film Society in 2016, programming films for the Palm Springs International Film Festival and the Palm Springs International ShortFest. After transitioning into the roles of Director of Programming at PSIFF and Festival Director of ShortFest, Liliana now serves as the year-round Artistic Director for both festivals and the Film-Society’s year-round programming.

Melissa Neiderman (Humanitarian Award): Born and raised in upstate New York, Melissa Neiderman received her degree in Psychology with a background in Theatre. After moving to California in 1989, she taught for 21 years in both the public and private sectors of education. While being a part of the committee to create the 52nd Charter School in California, Melissa started the elementary school theatre program at Washington Charter School. After moving over to the private school, Palm Valley, she co-created the Lower School Drama Group and established the annual Walk-a-thon benefitting local charities. Since retiring from teaching, she has become a full-time volunteer for the American Cancer Society Local Chapter, serving as event chair, advisory chair, Leadership Council member, and Community Engagement volunteer. She spearheaded the high-profile fundraising effort for Desi Cechin, a young girl who was diagnosed with Stage 4 neuroblastoma and now serves as advisory chair on the Desi Strong Foundation committee. She has also helped raise money for other charities such as ACT for MS, Loving All Animals, and various charitable organizations for the homeless totaling close to one million dollars. Melissa Neiderman has received the Jackie Lee Houston Spirit Award from the American Cancer Society and the Inspiration Award from the Women’s Leadership Forum. Melissa is the daughter of the author Andrew Neiderman who is the ghostwriter for the V.C. Andrews franchise and the mother of Dustin Neiderman, the youngest graphic designer in the film industry’s union in the United States. She is also the wife of Tim Gross, Rick Springfield’s keyboardist and background singer. Melissa has received the Jackie Lee Houston Spirit Award from the American Cancer Society and the Inspiration Award from the Women’s Leadership Forum.

ABOUT THE BROKEN GLASS AWARDS: Every year for the past decade, Palm Springs Women in Film and Television has presented the Broken Glass Awards to pay tribute to women of distinction who have “broken through the glass ceiling” in film, television, the arts and philanthropy, as well as paved the way for others to follow. These extraordinary visionaries and professionals have distinguished themselves as wonderful examples of successful pioneers who have flourished in the entertainment industry.

PAST HONOREES INCLUDE: Gale Anne Hurd, Alfre Woodard, Jennifer & Suzanne Todd, Mary Hart, Shari Belafonte, Jacqueline Bisset, Donna Mills, Shirley Jones, Diane Ladd, Jayne Seymore and Stefanie Powers to name a few.

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