Genevieve McGillicuddy is vice president of enterprises and strategic partnerships for Turner Classic Movies (TCM). In this capacity, she is responsible for leading the development and implementation of all enterprise initiatives including revenue-generating businesses, sponsorships, licensing, and merchandising, in order to generate awareness, audience reach and revenue opportunities for TCM. She also serves as executive director of the TCM Classic Film Festival. McGillicuddy is based in Atlanta and reports to Pola Changnon, general manager of TCM.
Previously, McGillicuddy served as senior director of brand marketing at TCM since 2008, where she notably led the development, launch and execution of the TCM Classic Film Festival in addition to supporting the development of the TCM Classic Cruise and other brand partnerships with Bonhams Auction House, the Hollywood Bowl, and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
McGillicuddy joined TCM as a marketing manager in 2004, working on promotional partnerships and licensed merchandise, as well as several consumer-marketing campaigns. Prior to coming to TCM, she served as marketing and publicity director for Madstone Theatres in Atlanta. From 1996 to 2001, McGillicuddy programmed workshops in film and video production as education coordinator for IMAGE Film & Video Center in Atlanta. In 1998, her duties expanded to include programming and producing the Atlanta Film & Video Festival (now known as the Atlanta Film Festival) and Out on Film: Atlanta Lesbian & Gay Film Festival.
McGillicuddy earned a bachelor’s degree from Franklin Pierce College in New Hampshire and a master’s degree in film studies from Atlanta’s Emory University. She serves on the board of the Atlanta Jewish Film Society which produces the annual Atlanta Jewish Film Festival.
Tell us a bit about your day-to-day – and what you love most about what you do?
Because the projects that my department executes impact all areas of the network and require a contribution by many at TCM, I spend a lot of my days in meetings, as we arrange for execution of an event, troubleshoot, and lay the groundwork for what is to come. I really enjoy being able to interact with so many of the awesome people who make TCM the incredible brand that it is — it’s a collaborative effort and we work well together as a team.
How did you get involved with the Atlanta Jewish Film Festival (AJFF) and become a board member?
I got involved as a volunteer for the Festival in 2004 — I was really impressed with the vision for the festival and how inclusive it was, both in programming and audiences. I was recruited to join the first board for the AJFF when it became a stand-alone entity, and am finishing up a second consecutive term on the board this year.
What does being a board member with AJFF entail?
Being a board member is about supporting the organization in different ways — in addition to representing the AJFF where I work and in the community, I have also contributed by co-chairing a committee and volunteering during the event as a speaker.
What was the best piece of career advice you ever received?
To learn how to ‘market’ yourself internally — meaning, sharing with peers and others outside your immediate circle what you work on and have accomplished. It’s not about bragging, it’s about building your brand.
What does success mean to you?
Knowing that a job was well done has been accomplished, working with friends, and having a positive impact on the world.
What has been the most rewarding moment of your career?
Probably the launch of the first TCM Classic Film Festival- it was truly a huge endeavor with high stakes. It was deeply satisfying to see it come to life.
How do you practice self-care?
It’s important to know when to say ‘no’—being overcommitted isn’t going to help you give your best to something, no matter how much you may care. Taking time for personal hobbies and for time off work is really important to recharge batteries and stay true to yourself. I love to cook for friends and travel.
If you could go back and give yourself three pieces of advice when you first started your career – what would you tell yourself?
Nurture relationships inside and outside of work. Consider the impact of your words and how you deliver a message. And it’s usually ok not to answer an email right away (take a beat if needed- no one has all the answers immediately).
What single word or saying do you identify most with?
“If you’re going through hell – keep going.” Winston Churchill
What film wins your Best Picture Award for the AJFF 2020 Festival?
Those Who Remained — this Hungarian film is a wonderful character study of two lost souls who find each other and create their own family after losing their own during the Holocaust.