CalArtian and President of Nickelodeon Animation Ramsey Naito (Art MFA 95) discussed the importance of representing a diversity of voices through entertainment at the 2021 Women In Animation (WIA) Virtual Summit at Annecy, which ran from June 14-19.
The 2021 theme was “The Business Case For Diversity,” which WIA Secretary/DEI Chair Julie Ann Crommett expressed hope that the summit “begins to model what transparency and action can and should be in our industry.” The summit featured a series of films and discussions by women in the animation industry. Naito participated in the Greenlighting Diverse Voices panel, moderated by Netflix’s Director of Original Animated Film Janet Wu.
“For Nickelodeon, we’re a global brand, we speak to kids and families across the globe,” Naito said during the panel. “And 50 percent of our core audience, which is [kids aged] six to 11, are statistically nonwhite. It is so important that we make content that speaks to these kids, so that they can see themselves in our content, or we’re not doing our jobs.”
As of June 20, the full program is available to the public via the WIA website.
Naito is an Academy Award-nominated producer who was appointed president of Nickelodeon Animation in 2020, having been promoted from her previous position as the studio’s executive VP of animation production and development. Recently, Naito delivered the keynote address at the CalArts 2021 Virtual Graduation.
Read more about Naito’s appointment as president of Nickelodeon Animation in an exclusive interview in Issue 8 of The Pool.