CHRISTIAN EPPS / FOUNDER & CEO
Christian Epps’s career as a lighting designer started in theatre and dance lighting at Northside School Of The Arts (Atlanta, GA), then attained a Bachelor Of Fine Arts in Technical Theatre from Howard University. Mr. Epps started a freelance career in Washington DC for several years and also taught at Duke Ellington School Of The Arts. Christian relocated to NY when he was awarded a full tuition scholarship to NYU’s Tisch School Of The Arts to study lighting design, and then went on to design for many of NY’s Off-Broadway and dance companies. He then toured nationally and internationally, covering 30-some states, numerous countries in Europe, the Caribbean, and Canada.
In 2006 Mr. Epps went to Nigeria to design the THISDAY! Festival lighting, which took him back several times a year for the next 3 years (Beyonce, Jay-Z, John Legend, Shakira, Snoop Dogg, Usher, Rihanna). In 2012 critically acclaimed Nigerian Director Andrew Dosunmo brought Christian in to work with him, which led to Christian forming an ongoing relationship with Jungle Films, leading to designs for Star Quest and Maltina (Nigerian Breweries), as well as The Headies Awards. The 2016 Africa Magic Viewer’s Choice Awards was broadcast live across the entire continent of Africa, was designed by Mr. Epps, and was for the first time supplied by all Nigerian vendors and crew. It was universally considered the biggest and best one to date by the viewers and by all involved as well.
In 2013 Christian incorporated Lights, Camera, Diaspora! The organization builds bridges between technicians across Africa with those in the African diaspora. Focusing on the below-the-line areas such as camera, lighting, sound, grip, and production coordinator departments. The main focus of LCD! is to provide collaboration in a hands-on, on-the-job environment. In light of this, Christian has gaff’ed two Nollywood movies with Emem Isong, one of the biggest Nollywood producer in the market, with skills-sharing as an equally important element of the job duties. Mr. Epps is continuing to design lighting for some of the biggest shows in Nigeria as well. LCD! has accomplished projects in Lagos, Nigeria, Kigali, Rwanda, Harare, Zimbabwe, Johannesburg, South Africa, and Durban, South Africa. Christian recently completed a design project at the JOMBA! Dance Festival at The Center For Creative Arts, University Of KwaZulu-Natal (Durban, SA). LCD!’s 2016 schedule includes a return to all of those locations as well as Senegal, Ghana, and Zambia. LCD! has become the major focus of Christian’s career and promises to reap benefits for many in the industry on both sides of the ocean!
In the Early 90’s Christian added film to his resume when he joined Spike Lee’s team, remaining there for more than a decade. Along the way Christian began to work in tv, specializing in multi-camera lighting for live broadcasts. Live broadcasts; President Bill Clinton at the White House; 1996 Centennial Olympic Games; John Leguizamo’s Broadway show FREAK. Live Events; American Black Film Festival, The Stellar Awards, Trumpet Awards, Black Movie Awards, St. Lucia Jazz Fest, Trinidad & Tobago Jazz Festival. FILMS; Selma (Oscar winner), Ain’t Them Bodies Saints (Sundance Winner), Clockers, Belly, Mo’Better Blues, Middle Of Nowhere (Sundance winner). Collaborators: Spike Lee, Ava DuVernay, Bradford Young, Hype Williams, Malik Sayeed, Disney’s Blue Sky concept program. Commercials; ESPN, Nike, McDonalds, Sprite. Networks; NBC, HBO, TBS, TNT, Showtime, A&E, BET, Nickelodeon
Jeffri Epps / VP Marketing
Jeffri’s career has enabled her to work on businesses from Fortune 100 companies to entrepreneurial start-ups and non-profit entities. Additionally, she has also had significant experience working with new products and innovations. As a strategic marketer she is able to tie high level business concepts to impact on the P&L and in-market execution. Jeffri has held leadership positions with The Coca-Cola Company, Chupa Chups USA, W H Smith and Ralston Purina. Jeffri’s clients have included Consumer Electronics Association, The Haystack Group, Atlanta International Consulting Group, The National Black MBA Association, Abundant Closet, Production Design Associates, Asthon Brand Group, Iosue Associates, The Coca-Cola Company, DeKalb County Board of Health; Steps to a Healthier DeKalb, and Greater Women’s Business Council. “No matter the size, every organization thinks they have a resource deficit. Knowledge, creativity and persistence are limitless and the keys to success.” In 2006 Jeffri was a finalist for the Atlanta Business league Super Tuesday award for “Success Against the Odds”. She was also a nominee for the NAWBO WE Award in 2009. Jeffri speaks and trains frequently on marketing topics.
Jeffri is very active in her community. She has served on the Board of Project One Junior Golf Academy and is an alumnus of the United Way VIP nonprofit board training program. She serves on the board for Marriott’s Grande Ocean. Jeffri advises the Junior League of Atlanta Capacity Building council and serves Georgetown University working with Undergraduate Admissions. She is a lifetime member of the National Black MBA Association.
Jeffri frequently speaks and conducts workshops on marketing topics for organizations including The DeKalb Chamber of Commerce, Inventors Associates of Georgia, Georgia State University Entrepreneurs, DeKalb Microenterprise Institute, The National Black MBA Association, SBDC/Congressman Hank Johnson Small Business Development Conference, Georgia Minority Supplier Development Council (GMSDC),
Jeffri has earned her Bachelors in Finance from Georgetown University. She has attended Atlanta University graduating Magna Cum Laude with an MBA in Marketing. She has also completed the SBDC FastTrac program.
Jeffri enjoys playing tennis, cooking and traveling. She has a personal goal of 50 states and 7 continents with just 8 states and 3 continents left to visit.
Monalisa Nwokike is a Nigerian born film and television producer with over ten years of experience. Her background in lighting and art direction has proven invaluable in productions for such notable film and music artists as Kim Basinger, Mickey Rourke, Akon and Brian McKnight.
Monalisa got her first big break in the 2006 Venezuela award winning short film “Conversando co Jr”. Directed by Carmen Cabana, Monalisa worked as an art director and film editor. Her passion and inspiration of the projects coming out of Nigeria, “Nollywood”, has been instrumental in Monalisa working as a consultant to bring these projects to the United States. Recently, Monalisa has been producing music videos for Nigerian’s top artists. The movie “Black November” saw Monalisa work tirelessly to bring the Nigerian based, internationally cast film to Hollywood’s attention.
Educated at Full Sail University Florida with a degree in Film Production.