Message from the Chair
The Assistant Directors Training Program of the Directors Guild-Producer Training Plan is a unique institution, annually admitting a select group of candidates and allowing them the opportunity to prepare for a career in television and film production. For over 50 years, the Program has trained hundreds of men and women from diverse backgrounds, graduating them as qualified to work as 2nd Assistant Directors. Many graduates have continued on to successful careers as 1st Assistant Directors, Production Managers, and Producers, as well as other senior production positions. The program offers a life-changing opportunity both for those already working in production and those who have never set foot on a set yet have a demonstrated interest and aptitude for this career.
I know this as well as anyone. My name is Kenneth Silverstein, and I was admitted to the Program 30 years ago (on my 3rd attempt). I was a newcomer to production, but wanted the best possible training and opportunity to succeed. I graduated in 1990, joined the Directors Guild, and began working as a 2nd A.D. I eventually became a 1st A.D., Unit Production Manager, and for the last 10 years, a Line Producer in television production.
The Trustees of the Plan are appointed by either the Directors Guild of America or by the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, as required by the collective bargaining agreement which established this institution. The Board works together to oversee the Training Program, offer safety and harassment prevention training for DGA members, as well as a program of continuing education for Unit Production Managers.
I was appointed as a Trustee in 2015, and was selected as Chair for 2019. Though my appointment is as a Producer Trustee, I am honored to be a member of the Directors Guild for 29 years. It is a privilege to serve on this board. It also gives me great satisfaction to contribute in helping train the next generation of excellent assistant directors and to help ensure a safe and non-discriminatory work environment in television and film production.