OFF 2020 Board of Directors
Christy Ebert Vrtis
Welcome to new Festival
Co-Director Jack Meggers
Jack Meggers has joined Oneota Film Festival this year as Festival Co-Director. He will take over for veteran Festival Director Christy Ebert Vrtis, when she leaves shortly before the 2020 Festival to supervise Luther students in Malta with her husband Bobby Vrtis and family.
Jack is an Iowa filmmaker with family in Lansing, Iowa. He lives in Des Moines, but travels regularly to NE Iowa. He brings experience as a Hollywood filmmaker and attendee of festivals as a filmmaker and audience member.
The board meets year-round with meetings generally on Mondays at 4pm. Meetings are monthly until just before the Festival when meetings will be held as needed.
The OFF Board is always looking for new members with fresh ideas to continue to support the Mission of OFF.
If you would like to become a board member, please contact Christy or Nancy. Attach a filled out copy of this Application Form to give us a little information about yourself. We will contact you soon.
The mission of the Oneota Film Festival is to build and sustain a community of film lovers through screenings and discussion. We strive to inform, inspire and engage viewers and filmmakers in compelling issues of our time.
The Oneota Film Festival was created and is produced by a dedicated group that includes representatives of host Luther College and local film enthusiasts who have formed a non-profit corporation for the sole purpose of producing the Festival in 2009 Those dedicated people were inspired and incited by Walter Ordway (Luther 1969), a world traveler and filmmaker himself.
In 2015, OFF became a 501c3 non-profit after being a fiscal sponsoree of the Driftless Art Collective in the beginning years. This makes donations to OFF tax-deductable.
As a non-profit organization,we organize an incredible Northeast Iowa Destination Experience at an affordable rate—admission to the Festival is free. Some specific activities in connection with the Festival charge an affordable fee. Following the recipe developed by the first OFF board, we strive to bring in quality films of any genre, and especially those that explore critical issues or address the great challenges of our time, such as environmental change and human rights.
We strive to discover and include films from anywhere created by independent filmmakers and not readily available through commercial networks. We strive to bring independent filmmakers to the Festival, either live or by Skype, to discuss their work with the audiences. We work to involve Decorah area and especially Iowa residents, students, and first-time filmmakers to nominate films for inclusion or to submit their own films.
Decorah and the Upper Iowa River, formerly known as the Oneota River, are located in Northeast Iowa. The name Oneota comes from the culture of people who lived in the river valley from approximately A.D. 1000 to the time of European contact (the end of the 17th century). Luther College hosts the Festival and other venues in the Decorah area host films throughout the year.
Emeritus Founding Board Member
Emeritus Board Members
Dan Belrichard Shirley Vermace John Hall Kristin Torresdall Korbin Paul
Pat Brockett Doug Burks Bailey Mulholland Brooke Stauffer Neal Patten
Rob Larson Sara Friedl-Putnum Cade Loven Deborah Bishop, Historian
The Oneota Film Festival appeals to all ages and people of various backgrounds. The Festival is affordably priced, thanks to the people who subscribe to annual Memberships and generous sponsors' donations. In addition to the late winter Festival, we offer additional screenings and film-centered events throughout the year.