The Filmmakers

Tim Kirkman (writer/director) was educated in the North Carolina public schools and graduated from the School of Design at N.C. State University with a degree in Visual Design and a minor in Journalism. After moving to New York City, he worked as an art director for Miramax Films, designing many Academy Awards campaigns for more than a decade. While getting his Master's Degree in Media Studies at The New School, he made DEAR JESSE, his first film. Since then he has directed four feature films: Lazy Eye and Loggerheads (which he wrote) and The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me, and 2nd Serve.

Mary Beth Mann Grealey (producer) was born and raised in North Carolina, attended North Carolina State University and worked as a social worker in New York City in the early 1990s. While in New York, she discovered filmmaking and worked on several features, including Abel Ferrara's BAD LIEUTENANT and Jonathan Stack's award-winning documentary HARLEM DIARY. A dedicated activist for LGBTQ, HIV/AIDS, children, and women's rights in her church and community, Mary Beth lives in Pittsboro, North Carolina with her husband, two children, and dogs. 

Gill Holland (executive producer) has produced, co-produced or executive produced over 100 feature films and documentaries. DEAR JESSE was his first of five collaborations with Tim Kirkman. A North Carolina native, Gill's films have screened at Sundance, TriBeCa, SxSW, Cannes, Toronto, and Berlin, and other festivals around the world. A Spirit Award nominee, Gill has produced some of the most acclaimed independent films of the last twenty years. He and his wife and children live in Louisville, Kentucky. 

Joe Klotz (editor) is an American film editor. A graduate of Syracuse University, Klotz fell into the film editing industry while trying to pay off student loans. After editing for local commercials, news stations, and television shows in New York City he moved into the world of film editing. He edited Phil Morrison's Junebug, Lee Daniels' The Butler, and John Cameron Mitchell's Rabbit Hole. Klotz was nominated for a 2009 Academy Award for Best Editing for Precious.

Norwood Cheek (cinematographer) is a filmmaker and musician known for his music videos, the Flicker Film Festival and his work with Super 8. He is in the band Cardinal Family Singers along with Peyton Reed.His music videos range from bands such as She & Him, the EELS, Superchunk, Squirrel Nut Zippers, Ben Folds Five  and many others. His short films have played in festivals around the world. The Cucalorus Film Festival had a retrospective of his short films and videos in 2011. He is featured in the JJ Abrams' Super 8 Blu-ray documentary "8mm Revolution" He directed and ran the Flicker Film Festival [6] in Chapel Hill and Los Angeles from 1994-2010 and wrote the Flicker Guide to the World of Super 8 filmmaking.

John Crooke (composer) is a singer, songwriter, multi-instrumentalist and producer. A childhood friend of the director, John composed the score for DEAR JESSE and lent his voice to a featured song with his band, Jolene (Sire Records). The song, "Welcome to the Plowshare" is featured on Jolene's 1995 EP and plays in the opening of the film.   

Director Tim Kirkman from the film Dear Jesse.

Director Tim Kirkman from the film Dear Jesse.