Employee Spotlight – Kim Davis

“I have always found the entertainment industry to be very fast moving, never black and white.”
Our Employee Spotlight this month features Kim Davis: Talent & Licensing Coordinator. Kim manages everything from sourcing, negotiating to coordinating of all talent payments for Union and non-union projects.
Check out the full interview with Kim below!

How long have you been at Mills James?

I started with Mills James in May of 2021.

Where were you before Mills James?

Prior to Mills James, I was working for Falcon Paymasters, an Entertainment Payroll company.

What brought you into this industry?

Luck! In 2001, I was looking for a new career path and a friend of mine informed me that AFTRA (now SAG-AFTRA) was hiring for an Administrative Assistant.  I started working for AFTRA in December, 2001. In 2003 I was promoted to the Contract Administrator for the local region and a few years later, I became the Assistant Executive Director of the OH/Pittsburgh Region. I have always found the entertainment industry to be very fast moving, never black and white. I love the energy from the performers along with the creativity of the agencies.

What is a project that you’ve worked on that sticks out to you compared to the others?

In 2022, one of our clients, Sazerac (Buffalo Trace) had reached out for a need with a campaign they were working on. Although not typical Mills James work, I jumped at the opportunity to partner with this great brand. The campaign launched in 2022 where they gave away 2,022 bottles of their bourbon to charity. Out of over 3,000 entries, we selected 1,000 charitable organizations who would receive the bottles. Once selected, I coordinated the shipment of the donation to the charity for them to auction or raffle at an event. I also had to keep track of the date of their event, the bottles they received and the total dollars raised. It was amazing to see how grateful each charity was to receive the donation. Some of them raised several thousands of dollars off of the donation of $500 in liquor. Here is a link to the winning charities:  https://www.buffalotracedistillery.com/landing-pages/2022-bottle-donation-winning-charities.html.

What’s the biggest challenge you see in this industry and how do we overcome it? Or how has the industry evolved over the years?

The evolution of entertainment from traditional to digital media has been marked by significant milestones that have reshaped the way we consume content. Electronic media, encompassing television, radio, and cinema, has played a pivotal role in this transformation. The biggest trend is streaming technology. AI is also changing the entertainment industry. As we saw with the new SAG-AFTRA Theatrical Agreement, Producers must give actors 48 hours notice and obtain clear and conspicuous consent from performers to use their likeness and pay them for it.

What do you like to do outside of work?

I have a 17 year old daughter who is my favorite person to hang out with. Anytime she will spend time with me, I’ll take it!  We also spend a lot of time with family and friends on the weekends grilling out, playing games, etc. I also volunteer 2 nights a week at the American Legion Hall for Veterans.