Art Director, Film Buyer, Graphic Designer, and Developer of US Public Library Media Collections
IES Abroad Vienna Alumna, 1968
Mary Kirby, a native Chicagoan, has enjoyed a long career in the theater and movie distribution business beginning as a film buyer for Brotman Theatres and ultimately as Assistant Marketing Director and Associate Film Buyer for Plitt Movie Theaters which was at the time the largest privately owned movie theatre chain in America.
Mary has experience serving as on the jury for the Chicago International Film Festival Documentary Division. Mary continued her lifelong study of the history of cinema through 10 years of study with the University of Chicago Film Studies taught by the Pulitzer Prize-winning film critic, Roger Ebert.
Mary was the Executive Director of the non-profit, Library Media Project, which established the first independent educational documentary media collections in many US public libraries. The project was originally funded by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation in order to assist librarians in their education media collection development. As of 2008, the Library Media Project collections are in over 2,800 libraries that served over 280 million people across America.
Mary has a BA from Cabrini University in Literature, and she did her graduate studies at the University of Wisconsin- Madison in Communication Arts.