Meet the team.
Kevin Truong is the director, producer and director of photography for “Mai American.” Born in a refugee camp for Vietnamese boat people in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Kevin and his family immigrated to the United States the following year. He first received recognition for his work with The Gay Men Project, a photo project in which he has documented the lives of gay and queer men across 37 countries. His subjects include the first openly gay member of Congress in Peru, HIV outreach workers in South Africa, a retired Justice of the Australian High Court and a gay prince in India. As a journalist he has written stories for NBC Digital at NBC News and Motherboard Tech by VICE. His work often explores the LGBTQ and Asian American experiences. “Mai American” is Kevin's first documentary feature film working as a director, but he brings to it over ten years of experience in visual storytelling and five years of experience in journalistic practice. He has also recently spent seven weeks traveling across the country as a director of photography for an unnamed documentary feature project, filming queer students at religious universities in the United States. Kevin has a B.S. in economics from Portland State University, a B.F.A. in photography from Pratt Institute and a M.A. in journalism with a specialization in documentary filmmaking from the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY.
Mary Conlon is an associate producer on “Mai American.” Mary is a video journalist based in New York City. She graduated from the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY with her Master’s in Spanish-language Journalism in December of 2020. Her written and visual stories have been published by Univision, City Limits, the NYCity News Service, iPondr, and Latino Rebels, and her documentary short titled “Jornada” screened at the Queens World Film Festival this past June. In addition to her work as a freelance videographer, she previously interned with the documentary team at Reveal from The Center for Investigative Reporting. Currently, she is the Storytelling Fellow for the Times Square Alliance.
Ariel Goodman is an associate producer on “Mai American.” Ariel is a bilingual multimedia journalist based in Philadelphia. After many years facilitating award winning youth media and community radio programs in Philly, she recently graduated from the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at CUNY with a Master’s in Spanish-language Journalism and Documentary. Her work centers around creating engaged, reciprocal journalism that builds relationships of trust and community power. From a multimedia art installation about women in Sanctuary in rural Colorado, to a podcast on the fight for lead free schools in Philadelphia, to reporting on the pandemic's effects on immigrant communities in NYC through WhatsApp, Ariel's work spans a variety of topics and mediums. She is currently a Tow Fellow at The Marshall Project where she creates collaborative journalism with communities impacted by the criminal justice system.
Juan Andrés Vergara is the composer for “Mai American.” Juan is a composer, producer and guitarist. He creates immersive music environments with an intuitive approach to explore them in different areas and contribute to collaborative settings; from studio work, to songwriting, concert music, performing with indie projects and film. His music is presented as subtle pointillistic textures that morph gradually with a balance of delicacy and organic chaos. His work has been showcased in festivals like Sheffield, Cannes Marche du Film, Maine, Morelia and Rotterdam International Film Festivals; as well as programming the Open Source Music Festival, Manuel Enríquez International Music Forum, Cervantino Festival, and UNESCO ́s 51st International Rostrum of Composers in Estonia. His latest projects include the score for the film Black Minutes, a piece for JACK Quartet, songs for his band Plano and remixes for friends. He completed a Master’s degree in Screen Scoring at NYU under a Fulbright Scholarship, participated in the LA Philharmonic National Composers Intensive, holds Licentiate degrees in Music Theory and Composition from London College of Music and an Undergraduate degree in Contemporary Concert Composition from Mexico ́s Centro de Investigación y Estudios de la Música.