Cara Mertes is director of Ford Foundation’s JustFilms initiative, a global effort that supports emerging and established filmmakers whose work addresses the most urgent social issues of our time. JustFilms also supports key organizations that explore and sustain the art of contemporary-issue, nonfiction storytelling. The initiative seeks to expand networks and resources for the community of independent filmmakers around the world and to increase the artistry and impact of their stories. Throughout her two-decade career, Cara has championed the artist’s role in society and embodied the power of independent filmmaking to raise awareness on issues of critical importance. Before joining the foundation in 2013, she was director of the Sundance Institute Documentary Film Program and Fund.