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Roundtable Discussion: “The Trees Remember” Films Series from REI Co-op Studios

Live on Zoom - Wednesday, June 30th at 1:00PM PST

Recently, REI launched a short-film trilogy written and directed by accomplished filmmaker Angela Tucker. Spanning across 60 years, “The Trees Remember” is a series of compelling, reflective, and sometimes humorous short fiction films that feature Black women of different ages growing and thriving in the outdoors and exploring connection through movement, stewardship, and grace. The series is co-produced by REI’s Co-op Studios, the newly announced content arm that challenges the historically narrow definition of the outdoors in storytelling and representation.

As brands producing films move to address historic under-representation, and increase their attention to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), how can they best collaborate with filmmakers to tell stories that come from the community? What are some best practices for finding these filmmakers and stories? How can brands discover under-represented talent, and ensure they aren’t just working with the usual suspects? And what’s the best way to bring these films to market?

Join us for a discussion with director Angela Tucker, REI’s Paolo Mottola and Hanna Boyd, moderated by film consultant Brian Newman.

Please watch the short films in advance at



Paolo Mottola

Director, Content & Media


Paolo Mottola is the director of content and media at REI Co-op, an outdoor retailer and the largest consumer co-operative in the U.S. with 20 million members. He leads REI Co-op Studios, which develops and produces films, podcasts and editorial programs to the inspire audiences to spend more time outside, and serves as editorial director and executive producer for the studio’s projects.

He previously led media planning, SEO and social media programs at REI and has contributed to its most renown, Cannes Lions-winning campaigns, #OptOutside and Force of Nature. His previous brand and communications work includes Microsoft, Samsung, U.S. Army and Eddie Bauer. He is alumnus and faculty at the University of Washington Communications Leadership graduate program and studied journalism at Western Washington University.

Angela Tucker


Angela Tucker is an Emmy and Peabody nominated writer, director, and producer who makes narrative and documentary films. Her production company, TuckerGurl Inc is passionate about stories that highlight underrepresented communities in unconventional ways. Tucker was a Sundance Institute Women Filmmakers Initiative Fellow and a recipient of Firelight Media’s inaugural William Greaves Fund for mid-career filmmakers. She has taught at Tulane University and received her MFA in Film from Columbia University. Tucker is represented by Corrine Aquino and Haley Jones at Artists First.

Hanna Boyd

Program Manager, Video Content Strategy


Hanna Boyd (she/her) is a video producer and program manager at REI Co-op where she works on the organization’s short films, series, and feature entertainment projects with REI Co-op Studios. She previously worked at an NYC-based agency doing content strategy and production for clients including Converse, CNN, Nike, and The Obama White House before heading west to Seattle where she currently resides. She’s alumnus of University of Colorado where she studied finance, entrepreneurship, and media.

Moderated by

Brian Newman



Brian Newman, founder of Sub-Genre, consults on content strategy, distribution and marketing for some of the top brands in the world. Current and former clients include: The Climate Pledge (Amazon), IBM, Keen, Merck KGaA, New York Times, Oatly, Patagonia, REI, Shopify Studios, Sonos, Stripe, Sundance, Unilever, Vulcan Productions, Yeti Coolers, and Zero Point Zero. Brian is the producer of The Outside Story (Tribeca Film Festival, 2020), and Love & Taxes, and executive producer of Shored Up. Brian has served as CEO of the Tribeca Film Institute, and is the founder of the Brand/Foundation Alliance.


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