One of the things I love most about working at MRY is its passion for investing in its own people. Our CEO, Matt Britton, has said that one of his goals is to make sure people come to work happy and recharged. MRY respects and encourages its employees to be dynamic, well-rounded individuals and supports life beyond the workplace. Beyond the “Get a Life” program where employees are allotted $200 a year to spend on bettering their life and having fun, I am an example of MRY’s commitment to their employees.
In 2011, my husband, Eli Hershko, and I made a movie about a trans woman’s journey starring Joslyn Defreece and Laverne Cox, CARL(A). This was Laverne before she was a trans activist, famous actress, Emmy nominee for OITNB, on the cover of Time Magazine and nominated as one of People’s most beautiful people. Eli and I simply wanted to tell a unique and meaningful story, a story about the simple need to feel comfortable in your own skin, and bring awareness and acceptance to a segment of the LGBT community that can be misunderstood and ostracized.
Fast forward four years later to 2015, where I introduced the movie to MRY’s Égalité, an LGBT employee resource group, and they were so inspired and moved by the movie, they wanted to find a way to support it and the story behind it. With the leadership of Égalité’s head, Michael Bollinger, and a deep crew of passionate teammates across both MRY and Starcom MediaVest Group, we set out to produce a true New York City movie premiere for the film. On April 20th, 2015 the Ziegfeld Theatre was packed with press, celebrities, employees and influencers, which makes this one of the first times that an advertising and media agency have come together to support a transgender cause in this way.
Leading up to, during and after the event major media outlets including Huffington Post, Out Magazine, MSNBC.com, CNN and more, took a vested interest in supporting CARL(A).
The premiere was to kick-off a very ambitious campaign with Indiegogo where a large portion of the funds will go to the National Center for Transgender Equality. In exchange for minimum $10 donation, one can access the film online through a very limited release.
The Campaign ends on June 4, 2015 so please visit www.carlathemovie.com to watch the film and give back to the transgender community.
The initiative started as a small at-home passion project for myself and my husband, and thanks to the support of MRY and SMG, it grew into something that is creating positive change in my life and the lives of others. I thank everyone for their support and time and appreciate an agency that understands the value and importance of making their employees happy.
And know when you pursue something from your heart, only good things will follow.