Ilya Tovbis joins the VAFF after 10 years as the Artistic and Managing Director of JxJ: The Washington Jewish Film and Music Festival. He became the Washington Jewish Film Festival (WJFF) Director in 2012, and took on managing the Music Festival (WJMF) in 2016; he is the founding director of JxJ, which merged the two festivals under one new brand.
Ilya has extensive programming experience in both the Jewish and broader film worlds, having previously worked with the Mill Valley Film Festival, The Picture House, the Carole Zabar Center for Film, the San Francisco IndieFest, and the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival.
Prior to taking on the leadership of WJFF, Ilya was the Director of Programming at The Picture House, a historic arthouse cinema located in Southern Westchester. The theater annually attracted over 25,000 people to a varied selection of programming with a focus on international, documentary, and independent film.