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Judges & Speakers

Karina Hou

  • Famous artist and educator

  • Karina Hou grew up in Hong Kong and now lives in Maryland. She loved art since she was a child, and studied with famous teachers. He has deep attainments in piano, literature, and painting. She is familiar with Eastern and Western cultures and has lived in Montgomery for many years. She is a social activist who is keen on public welfare undertakings.

  • Ms. Hou’s current positions include:
    President of Chinese American Chamber of Commerce of Greater Washington, President of Maryland Film Festival, President of the Maryland Chapter of Organization of Chinese American Women.

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Kira Omans

  • Actor, model, advocate

  • Kira Omans is an actress, known for Dating App Mishap (2020), The Breakdown: A Self-Tape Series (2020) and Batman: Requiem for a Bat (2019). She also played the first Asian American lead in Damn Write Originals’ series Southern Fried Rice.  Kira has a B.F.A. with a concentration in Performance for Stage/Screen from George Mason University, and she attended Governor's School for the Visual & Performing Arts for acting.


Bianca Chen

  • The founder of OX3 TV Production.

  • Bianca, AKA Yijia is more recognized as a documentary producer/director in recent years. Her documentary works include STARTUPS MADE IN THE USA, NEXT: BLOCKCHAIN, HELLO, FUTURE!. NEXT: BLOCKCHAIN was selected as one of the 5 finalists for best documentary project at Cannes 2018 MIPDoc. She used to be a seasoned journalist and presenter for Reuters TV in the Asian market. She appears in prime time on China’s most prominent business channel, CCTV Business, as a financial commentator.


Octavian Kaul

  • Octavian is an active filmmaker and actor born in Vancouver, British Columbia in September 2003.

  • He discovered film when his father won a FLIP Camera at a work event, wrote and directed his first movie at age 8 called "Kids vs Alians".

  • His acting career began in September of 2014 when he was cast as the lead in the "Rollin" music video for the Vancouver Island band, Current Swell. Shortly afterwards, he won the role of Arnie in the short film Strawman (2016) for which he won Best Supporting Actor at the UBC Persistence of Vision Film Festival.


Lexi King

  • Writer and director from Granby, Connecticut.

  • Graduated from Brown University in 2021 with Honors in screenwriting, where she wrote and directed a short film for her senior thesis.

  • She has worked as a development intern for Jason Bateman's production company Aggregate Films and Bryan Unkless's production company Screen Arcade, and she is currently working with writer/producer Tad Quill as he develops new television projects. She also writes and performs stand-up comedy and has written sketch comedy.

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Tim Zhao

  • BA, Art Design, Renmin University of China

  • Independent director, Artistic Director and Founder, Lan Culture LLC

  • Consultant at 2009 Shanghai World Expo

  • Artistic Director, Smart Education Corp.



  • As a film production and acquisitions executive, Eleonora has worked as Vice President and head of the film co-productions and acquisitions division at Turner Pictures. 

  • She served as Senior Vice President at Pandora Films, running their U.S. office and was responsible for film productions and acquisitions.

  • She began her career with RCS Films and Television in Italy, where she held various acquisitions, distribution, and marketing positions and eventually oversaw the company's worldwide acquisitions and productions from Los Angeles. 

  • She is a producer for A Paixão Segundo G.H.(2020), Galore(2013), Monica, and The Crying Steppe(2021).



William Kleinert

  • Famous producer, director, writer and environmentalist

  • William Kleinert is a committed environmentalist, avid student of history and a 40-year veteran of the media business, with in-depth experience across traditional and new technology platforms, content creation and distribution channels. His media production, marketing, sales, management, executive, news and consulting experience spans three continents and fifteen countries.

  • William is the producer, director and/or writer of six documentaries, including, “Aaron Copland: The Composer Conducts” and the three-part “Saving The Environment” series, as well as 600 television commercials, dozens of corporate and association productions and music videos.


Tony Jia

  • Chief Executive Officer of Montgomery International Film Festival, Co-Founder of Asian Art & Film Foundation

  • Tony Jia is a graduate of the University of Maryland, he is Producer of the YouTube Channel Asian Boss, the Advisor of the United Nations Economic & the Pacific, and the Co-Founder of Asiatic Youth Education Ltd. located in Shanghai, China.


QinLing Li

  • Independent director, producer, and editor. 

  • Born and bred in Changsha, Hunan, she studied and practiced journalism in China, Australia, and the United States.

  • Her work has appeared on PBS Frontline, Al Jazeera English, Newsweek Media Group, Politico, the Christian Science Monitor, and among others. Qinling graduated from Columbia Journalism School in 2016 and went back to Columbia as an Adjunct Assistant Professor in 2018.



Cindy Chu

  • Actress born on February 13, 1990 in Detroit, Michigan, USA.

  • Cindy’s parents are first-generation Americans, having immigrated from Taiwan in the late 70s. She enjoyed performing arts all throughout her childhood, from acting in school plays to being in the comedy troupe and her high school show choir. Cindy is also an avid rock climber.

  • She is known for her work on Hawaii Five-0 (2010), MacGyver (2016) and New Girl (2011).


Tianyi Wang

  • Graduated from Beijing Film Academy and Academy of Art University.

  • His works during his student period won the best film at the Houston International Film Festival and the best photography at the Los Angeles Film Festival. Mr. Wang is currently working as a news photographer for Phoenix TV. He photographs many social activities including U.S.  presidential election, hurricanes, racist riots and etc. He started shooting short films with the DV given by his father when he was in high school. He is willing to share his experiences and feelings with future filmmakers and help them pursue their dreams.

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Li He

  • Graduated from China Academy of Art

  • Born in Hangzhou, Engaged in independent creation for many years. Graduated and taught in the first studio of the Department of Integrated Art of China Academy of Art.

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