About Us

EST. 1999

The Chicago Irish Film Festival (CIFF), dedicated to presenting the works of Irish filmmakers since 1999, opens for Chicago audiences a window into the color and complexity of Irish life. Contemporary Irish films bring the lyrical and self-reflective richness of a long artistic tradition to bear on unique stories and pressing social issues with a gaze both critical and loving. CIFF strives to include a broad representation of current Irish cinema in both English and Irish language, and encourages submissions that highlight the extraordinary diversity and creativity that is the mark of Irish filmmaking wherever in the world it may occur.

CIFF’s passion for supporting Irish films and filmmakers translates into a commitment to broadening its reach through marketing and social media to audiences in the Chicago area and beyond. We wholeheartedly thank our sponsors, donors and filmmakers, and look forward to a vibrant festival season. Don’t miss it!


Our Team

Meet the folks that make it all happen.

Board of Directors

  • Michael Nix
  • Christopher Kamyszew
  • Benjamin Nitka
  • Colleen Doherty

Festival Director & Manager

  • Jude Blackburn, CIFF Director
  • Cliff Reens​, CIFF Manager

Advisory Committee

  • Ferdia Doherty
  • Imelda Gallagher
  • Edward Galvin
  • Angela McLaughlin
  • Robin McCown
  • John McEnaeny
  • Aris Byrne

Festival Staff

  • Seth Adams, film tech
  • Mark Bettenhausen, graphic design
  • Sam Blackburn, social media volunteer
  • Ayman Hishmeh, video production
  • Chris Matusek, graphic and web design

Theatre Directors & Manager