Past Fellows & Mentors


Nate Dappen

Nate Dappen is a biologist and award-winning photographer and filmmaker based in San Diego, CA. He earning his Ph.D. in Biology in 2012. He is a fellow of the Explorers Club, affiliate of the International League of Conservation Photographers, and committee member of the International Wildlife Film Festival. Nate can’t get enough of surfing or IPAs. Nate co-founded Day’s Edge Productions with Neil Losin in 2012.

Neil Losin

Neil Losin is a biologist, photographer, and filmmaker based in Miami, FL. He was named a National Geographic Young Explorer in 2009 while studying invasive lizardin Florida and Puerto Rico. Neil received an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship and earned his Ph.D. in UCLA’s Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology in 2012. He’s an incorrigible birdwatcher and can juggle more objects than you’d think. Neil cofounded Day’s Edge Productions with Nate Dappen in 2012.

Andy Maser

Andy Maser is an award winning Director/DP with sixteen years’ experience in commercial, broadcast, documentary, non-profit and feature film production. Whether he’s directing a :30 spot or shooting an IMAX feature film, Andy strives to create rich sounding, visually stunning and compelling work that tells the most authentic story possible.

Rob Whitehair

Rob Whitehair is an award winning wildlife filmmaker, artist and chief instigator at Wild Propaganda and CEO/Co-founder of Mammalz, the streaming and sharing app for people who love nature.

Tahria Sheather

Tahria Sheather is an Australian documentary producer and director who has produced broadcast series, 360 video experiences and short documentaries for National Geographic Channel, New York Times and PBS. Her non-profit and commercial brand clients include Columbia Sportswear, Chaco Footwear, The Nature Conservancy, Travel Oregon, and Destination Canada, among others.

Laura Helft

Laura Helft is the Managing Science Editor for the Multimedia Group at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, where she focuses on increasing impact of projects through partnerships and collaborations. Prior to joining the lab, she worked at Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s Tangled Bank Studios as a researcher and science editor.”

Alex Duckles

Alex Duckles joined Tangled Bank Studios in 2017 as a Science Education Fellow to further explore the growing intersect between science storytelling and digital audiences. After producing his first full-length documentary in New Zealand and studying Science Communication at the University of Otago, Alex joined PBS Education and later PBS Digital Studios, working with award-winning digital science series including The Good Stuff and Full-Time Kid. Most recently, Alex managed digital outreach and distribution strategy for the YouTube series I Contain Multitudes starring best-selling author Ed Yong; the series has just finished a 24-week run publishing videos about the human microbiome and our ever-changing relationship with the universe of bacteria that lives inside us.

Janet Hess

Janet Hess is the Series Editor of NATURE, the premier American natural history series fromTHIRTEEN/WNET for PBS. She develops new projects, shapes stories, and works with writers, producers, and editors to make strong narratives a part of the NATURE brand. Janet has written and produced many episodes for the series, among them Pale Male, for which she was awarded the 2004 News and Documentary Emmy for Outstanding Writing. Her script for An Original DUCKumentary was also nominated for a News and Documentary Emmy and for best writing at the 2013 Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival. Her work on the feature doc The Legend of Pale Male received the outstanding writing award at both the Jackson Hole Wildlife Film Festival 2009 and at Wildscreen 2010. Janet is a graduate of Smith College and the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies.

Steven Bedard

Steven Bedard is the Editor-in-Chief of bioGraphic, an online magazine published by the California Academy of Sciences that showcases both the wonder of nature and the most promising solutions for sustaining life on Earth. A former field biologist who spent the early 90s chasing spotted owls and northern goshawks through the woods, Bedard now tags along with scientists and writes and produces media about their work. Having written about archaeology, engineering, and astrophysics, he’s found a much happier place covering the living world for bioGraphic.

Cody Westheimer

When he’s not running, riding his bike, or exploring the wilderness, Cody Westheimer is racking up credits as diverse as they are interesting. To date, he’s amassed nearly 150 hours of music for feature films and documentary series. And in addition to original scoring, his vast library continues to be a resource for networks and independent filmmakers alike.

Eric Bendick

Eric Bendick is an Emmy Award winning Writer, Director and Producer (and occasional unwitting stuntman) for Grizzly Creek Films. He’s led filming expeditions in the Florida Everglades, the Grand Canyon, British Columbia’s Great Bear Rainforest, Kodiak Island, and to the most remote spot in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. His work has been supported by National Geographic, Smithsonian, PBS, History Channel, Animal Planet, Patagonia, Turner Endangered Species Fund, and the U.S. Department of Defense. He is a graduate of Brown University and Montana State University and can frequently be found playing in snow, rock, mud, water, and ice in the mountains of southwest Montana.

Neil Nightingale

Neil Nightingale has made wildlife films for over thirty years, has headed the BBC’s prestigious BBC Natural History Unit and is now Creative Director of BBC Earth, leading teams to create wildlife stories in a wide variety of media, from 3D theatrical films to live events and VR.