By: Oct. 09, 2012

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts New York, BAFTA New York, ( announced today the 2012 winners of its new education initiative, "The BAFTA New York Media Scholarship Program." Students attending Hunter College in New York City are the first recipients of the inaugural awards totaling $15,000. The winner of the BAFTA New York-Donald & Eleanor Taffner Award in the amount of $2,500 is Chelsea Franklin. The winner of the BAFTA New York-A+E Networks Award in the amount of $5,000 is BRyan Powers. The winner of the BAFTA-New York - AMC Networks Award in the amount of $2,500 is Dana D'Adamo. The winner of the BAFTA New York - Vibrant TV Award in the amount of $2,500 is Anjuman Hossain. The winner of the BAFTA New York - Cinedigm Award in the amount of $2,500 is Jennifer Guberman. The awards were distributed recently at a private breakfast reception at Cinedigm.

The grant program was established earlier this year to support undergraduate students pursuing media studies at public institutions located within the New York City area. The four-year program, which begins with the Fall 2012 semester, bestows gifts in the amount of $2,500 or $5,000 and is for one year. Funding for the grant is generated two ways: The BAFTA New York - Donald & Eleanor Taffner Award, created in honor of the Taffners' contribution to the global media industry; and corporate sponsored awards.

Harlene Freezer, Chair of BAFTA New York says: "BAFTA New York is always looking for new ways to support our industry and local community. By implementing 'The BAFTA New York Media Scholarship Program' we are addressing the very real issue of rising tuition costs at public colleges and institutions. Media companies such as A+E Networks, AMC Networks, Vibrant TV and Cinedigm recognize this need and we are excited that they have joined us to support Hunter College.

"Donald Taffner, Sr. was among the first media executives to recognize the value of establishing global production relationships. He was a Founding Trustee of BAFTA New York and we miss him very much. His story is the quintessential American dream. A local kid from Brooklyn, NY, who works hard and along with his wife and business partner, Eleanor, becomes one of the industry's most inventive and respected producers and distributors of television programs worldwide. Naming a grant in their honor is a way to respect that legacy and foster a new generation of creatives."

Don Taffner, Jr., President. DLT Entertainment said: "I know that my parents would be deeply honored to have this award presented in their memory. They had a long history in the philanthropic support of the arts and education motivated by their belief that it is crucially important to constantly develop the next generation of creators of entertainment products."

Dr. Libby O'Connell, Senior Vice President, Corporate Outreach, A+E Networks said: "On behalf of A+E Networks, we are delighted to join BAFTA New York and Hunter College's mission to encourage and support students to obtain their educational goals. Congratulations to BRyan Powers and all of the other student winners."

Ellen Kroner, EVP Communications & Marketing, AMC Networks said: "We're proud to support this talented, next generation of industry leaders and congratulate all the recipients on this achievement."

Dan Zifkin, President, Vibrant TV/Zephyr Media Group said: "When I went to school, I was fortunate enough to have help via Student Loans, Grants and Scholarships. I know the value of other people's goodwill and how it can make a difference in a young person's life. We are proud at Vibrant TV to help make a difference and impact a young person to enable them to either create or achieve their dream."

Susan Margolin, Co-President, Cinedigm Entertainment Group said: "Through her studies and internships Jennifer Guberman has already shown an early passion for broadcast media. "We are happy to provide the essential support needed to pursue post-graduate opportunities and look forward to the continued success of these Hunter students."

Jennifer J. Raab, President, Hunter College said: "We are so proud that BAFTA New York has recognized Hunter College students as the recipients of these inaugural education scholarships. Now our incredibly talented film students have the support that enables them to study this vital industry here in the media capital of the world."

To be considered for a BAFTA New York Media Studies Scholarship, students must show a demonstrated financial need, be an undergraduate student with a declared major in media studies with 30-60 completed credits, have an overall GPA of 3.0 or higher and a recommendation from a faculty advisor. They must also submit an essay.

Grantee bios:
Chelsea Franklin, BAFTA New York - Donald & Eleanor Taffner Award winner: Ms. Franklin, a film major at Hunter, has written, directed and produced her own work. Her film Holloway Park won the Best Student Film award at the Hamptons International Film Festival. It was also featured at the New York Independent international Film Festival

BRyan Powers, BAFTA New York - A+E Networks Award winner: Mr. Powers is an aspiring film editor looking forward to a career in movies or television. He moved to New York from Columbus Ohio, and currently lives in Brooklyn. A film major, he is on the Dean's List at Hunter, maintaining a perfect grade-point average of 4.0.

Dana D'Adamo, BAFTA New York - AMC Networks Award winner: Ms. D'Adamo's artistic focus is the development process and pre-production in film, video and TV. While studying at Hunter and majoring in film, she has worked as a development intern at the new Viacom venture NickMom and at Glimmer Productions.

Anjuman Hossain, BAFTA New York - Vibrant TV Award winner: Ms. Hossain is a film major with a special interest and expertise in art direction. She graduated from New York's selective LaGuardia High School of Music & Art and Performing Arts, and is on the Dean's List at Hunter. She was the assistant director in charge of set design for Unsweetened Ice Tea? an award-winning student film.

Jennifer Guberman, BAFTA New York - Cinedigm TV Award winner: Ms. Guberman is preparing for a career in television by majoring in media studies at Hunter, where she is on the Dean's List. Her dream is to work behind the camera, and she has already gained valuable experience as a marketing intern at the web company Stray Boots and a publicity intern at Atlantic Records.

About DLT Entertainment LTD.

With offices in London, New York and Los Angeles, DLT Entertainment Ltd. is engaged in every aspect of television distribution and production around the world, as well as stage production in the US and in the UK. Founded in 1963 as a distribution company by Don Taffner Senior, the company added television production to its portfolio in 1977. DLT Entertainment has enjoyed terrific success over the last forty plus years with legendary hits including the multiple award-winning sitcom My Family, As Time Goes By, Three's Company, Too Close For Comfort and Meet My Folks. In addition DLT has built a reputation as a leading distribution company with classics such as The Benny Hill Show, The World at War, The Adventures of Teddy Ruxpin, Chicken Soup for the Soul, Cinema Europe: The Other Hollywood and The Russ Abbot Show."?

About A+E Networks

A+E Networks is an award-winning, global media content company offering consumers a diverse communications environment ranging from television networks to websites, to home videos/DVDs to gaming and educational software. A+E Networks is comprised of A&E? Network, Lifetime?, History?, Lifetime Movie Network?, BioTM, H2TM, History en Espa?olTM, Crime & Investigation NetworkTM, Military HistoryTM, Lifetime Real Women?, A&E IndieFilms?, A+E Networks International?, A+E Networks Digital? and A+E Networks Consumer ProductsTM. A+E Networks channels and branded programming reach more than 300 million households in over 150 countries. A+E Networks, LLC. is a joint venture of Disney-ABC Television Group and Hearst Corporation.

About AMC Networks

AMC reigns as the only cable network in history to ever win the Emmy? Award for Outstanding Drama Series four years in a row, - reminder: we may need to update this if MM wins again on Sunday. as well as the Golden Globe? Award for Best Television Series - Drama for three consecutive years. Whether commemorating favorite films from every genre and decade or creating acclaimed original programming, the AMC experience is an uncompromising celebration of great stories. AMC's original stories include "Mad Men," "Breaking Bad," "The Walking Dead," and "Hell on Wheels." AMC further demonstrates its commitment to the art of storytelling with its slate of unscripted original series, as well as curated movie franchises like AMC's Can't Get Enough and AMC's Crazy About. AMC is owned and operated by AMC Networks Inc. and its sister networks include IFC, Sundance Channel and WE tv. AMC is available across all platforms, including on-air, online, on demand and mobile. AMC: Story Matters HereSM

About Vibrant TV/Zephyr Media Group

Vibrant TV is an advertiser-supported television channel dedicated to the airing of English-language quality programming from international producers featuring series and specials in a wide range of categories including lifestyle, reality, drama, movies and sports. Vibrant TV is a Zephyr Media Group company. Headquartered in Chicago with offices in Los Angeles, New York, Phoenix and Washington D.C., Zephyr Media Group is a recognized industry leader in media buying, planning and management. Zephyr is industry-recognized for its high profile media representation of major national advertisers and direct response marketers, amassing credits for numerous high-profile campaigns encompassing all major media channels including broadcast, cable, print, radio, digital and outdoor advertising.

About Cinedigm

New Video, a Cinedigm company, is a leading entertainment distributor and the largest aggregator of independent digital content worldwide. Headquartered in New York City, with an international presence in 45 territories, the company delivers feature films, TV programs and web originals via digital download, streaming, video-on-demand, Blu-ray, DVD, and theatrical release. In 2011, New Video bowed Oscar?-nominated Hell and Back Again and international blockbuster Elite Squad: The Enemy Within in U.S. theaters. The company's library includes award-winning documentaries from Docurama Films?, next-gen indies from Flatiron Film Company?, and acclaimed independent films and festival picks through partnerships with The Sundance Institute and Tribeca Film. New Video is proud to distribute many Oscar?-nominated films including GasLand, Waste Land, The Secret of Kells and Chico & Rita. Cinedigm Digital Cinema Corp. (CIDM) is a leader in providing the services, expertise and technology that are critical to transforming movie theaters into digital entertainment centers. Its deployment entity, state-of-the-art distributor and exhibition software, and marketing and distribution platforms are cornerstones of the digital cinema revolution. The company recently acquired New Video to form a full-service, end-to-end digital studio that acquires content for theatrical distribution and across digital, mobile and home media platforms. New titles poised for release in 2012 include The Invisible War, Citadel, In Our Nature and 22 Bullets.

About Hunter College

Hunter College, located in the heart of bustling Manhattan, is the largest college in the City University of New York (CUNY) system. Founded in 1870, it is also one of the oldest public colleges in the country. Currently, over 22,000 students attend Hunter, pursuing both undergraduate and graduate degrees in more than 170 different programs of study.
Hunter College is famous for the diversity of its student body, which is as diverse as New York City itself. For over 140 years, it has provided educational opportunities for women and minorities, and today, students from every walk of life and every corner of the world convene at Hunter in pursuit of the American Dream.

About BAFTA New York

BAFTA New York, founded in February 1996, is comprised of media professionals whose goal is to recognize excellence in the film, television, and digital media arts; and promote the achievements of the British production and entertainment industry in the New York region.
Each year BAFTA New York hosts an extensive roster of feature film and documentary screenings, television events and trending topic panel discussions for its membership and other professionals working within the entertainment industry. Through alliances with established organizations in the moving image, entertainment and publishing industries, BAFTA New York provides exclusive access to actors, filmmakers, writers and creatives working in the media arts.

BAFTA New York is committed to fostering new talent and forges alliances with local businesses and education institutions to establish scholarships and outreach programs to assist teens and adults interested in pursuing a career in the media industry.
For further information, visit

BAFTA New York is a Not-For-Profit 501(c) 3 Public Benefit Corporation.

The British Academy of Film and Television Arts is an independent charity that supports, develops and promotes the art forms of the moving image by identifying and rewarding excellence, inspiring practitioners and benefiting the public. In addition to its Awards ceremonies, BAFTA has a year-round Learning & Events programme that offers unique access to some of the world's most inspiring talent through workshops, masterclasses, lectures and mentoring schemes, connecting with audiences of all ages and backgrounds across the UK, Los Angeles and New York. BAFTA relies on income from membership subscriptions, individual donations, trusts, foundations and corporate partnerships to support its ongoing outreach work. For further information, visit