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Paul Martin

Paul Martin, Board of Advisors

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Paul Martin

Paul Martin is the Senior Vice President and Chief Diversity Officer for Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE), a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE’s global operations encompass motion picture, motion picture production, acquisition and distribution; music; television, digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; and development of new entertainment products, services and technology. SPE’s Motion Picture Group production organizations include Columbia Pictures, Screen Gems, TriStar Pictures, Sony Pictures Animation and Sony Pictures Classics. Martin is responsible for global talent strategies at all levels within the organization. As the Chief Diversity Officer, he brings together people reflecting the culturally diverse world in which we live to create an innovative workplace.

Since joining Sony Pictures Entertainment in 2008, Martin has successfully implemented a multi-prong inclusion and cross-cultural strategy that has elevated traditional diversity boundaries in order to build an environment of global inclusion. He has introduced partnerships and programs with the goal of targeting emerging and culturally diverse creative talents as content suppliers, writers, producers and directors whose stories will inspire and entertain global audiences.  He also manages several global strategic initiatives aimed at continuing to increase diverse representation throughout the organization as well as building a culture of inclusion.  Most recently, Martin spearheaded the launch of Sony Pictures Action, a racial justice and inclusion strategy, based on four pillars – Our People, Our Content, Our Partners and Our Community. He is the Co-Chair of the Action Council, an organization comprised of 14 senior executives and 7 global subcommittees that oversees all Sony Pictures Action initiatives. One of the flagship programs Martin created and continues to manage is SPE’s 13 Employee Business Resource Groups (EBRGs) with more than 1,400 global employees participating and sharing common interests that foster inclusion and belonging as well as elevate professional development.

Martin’s expertise and unique leadership style has earned him many professional recognitions, including the African American Film Critics Association, California Diversity Council, Walter Kaitz Foundation, Diversity Vanguard Award, for achievements in Diversity & Inclusion and he is a two-time recipient of Sony’s HR Compass Award, Sony Corporate’s highest annual award given for high impact programs. He has also been recognized by Variety in their 2019 Inclusion Impact Report, and Black Enterprise Magazine as one of top inclusion executives in the country.

Prior to joining SPE, Martin was Vice President of Worldwide Recruitment for Warner Bros. Entertainment. Martin holds a B.A. from Wesleyan University and a J.D. from University Of Southern California (USC) Law School. Martin resides in Los Angeles, California with his wife Laury, his son Aaron and his three dogs – Symba, Buster and Blueberry.

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Lauren Appelbaum

Lauren Appelbaum is the VP, Communications and Entertainment & News Media, of RespectAbility, a nonprofit organization fighting stigmas and advancing opportunities so all people with disabilities can fully participate in every aspect of community. As an individual with an acquired nonvisible disability – Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy – she works at the intersection of disability, employment, Hollywood and politics. She regularly conducts trainings on the why and how to be more inclusive and accessible for entertainment executives throughout the industry. Appelbaum partners with studios, production companies and writers’ rooms to create equitable and accessible opportunities to increase the number of people with lived disability experience throughout the overall story-telling process. These initiatives increase diverse and authentic representation of disabled people on screen, leading to systemic change in how society views and values people with disabilities. She has consulted on more than 100 TV episodes and films with A&E, Bunim-Murray Productions, NBCUniversal, Netflix, ViacomCBS, and The Walt Disney Company, among others. She represents RespectAbility on the CAA Full Story Initiative Advisory Council, Disney+ Content Advisory Council, MTV Entertainment Group Culture Code and Sundance Institute’s Allied Organization Initiative. She is the author of The Hollywood Disability Inclusion Toolkit and the creator of an innovative Lab Program for entertainment professionals with disabilities working in development, production and post-production. She is a recipient of the 2020 Roddenberry Foundation Impact Award for this Lab. To reach her, email [email protected]

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