UWM alumnus creates celebrated film festival for Milwaukee

Jonathan Jackson’s (BFA Film ’02) experiences running the UWM Student Film & Video Festival foreshadowed incredible things to come professionally. Now CEO of Milwaukee Film, an organization he helped found in 2008, Jackson grew the Milwaukee International Film Festival into one of the nation’s largest. During the annual event’s 15-day run, more than 85,000 attendees choose among 350 films in eight venues and more than 500 unique events. Jackson also orchestrated the organization’s acquisition, renovation and management of Milwaukee’s historic Oriental Theatre, and he serves as the president of the East Side Business Improvement District Board. Jackson received the distinguished alumni achievement award at the 2022 UWM Alumni Association Awards.