RespectAbility Entertainment Professionals Lab, Summer 2023
Annie Hayes is a proud native New Yorker who still hasn’t decided whether LA’s superior sunsets make up for its horrendous subway system. She was a staff writer on season 4 of The CW’s In the Dark after serving as the show’s script coordinator in seasons 2 and 3. Prior to that, she was the assistant to creators/showrunners/directors Jarrad Paul & Andy Mogel on the brilliant but tragically short-lived Netflix comedy Huge in France. She currently writes micro-fiction short stories on her weekly Substack. Despite all that, she really peaked in middle school, when she competed in chess tournaments, was starting second baseman on her all-boys baseball team, and played first violin in the school orchestra, all while managing daily treatments for cystic fibrosis and wearing a back brace for scoliosis 16 hours a day—a level of productivity she’ll never again come close to achieving. In the years since, she has also amassed an in-depth knowledge of all things Frasier, Seinfeld, and Billy Joel.
After an extensive search and interview process, 20 individuals were invited to participate in the Los Angeles Cohort of RespectAbility’s 2023 Entertainment Lab taking place May 1 – June 9, 2023. This 6-week Lab aims to develop and elevate the talent pipeline of disabled entertainment professional working behind-the-scenes in television, film, and streaming, while connecting them with industry professionals and creatives. Participants include people with physical, cognitive, sensory, mental health, and other disabilities ranging in age the 20’s through the 50’s. The Lab is a recipient of The Roddenberry Foundation Impact Award.