Name: Katie Shapiro
Marital status: Single
Children: My Goldendoodle, Gittel
Career: Owner and founder, Katie Shapiro Media
Hometown: Akron, Ohio
Where do you call home today? Denver
Bundle of energy Katie Shapiro is the owner and founder of the local public relations firm Katie Shapiro Media. Her experience in public relations has helped her develop a niche working with the film industry, and a growing Denver presence in locally-produced films. For example, Shapiro is one of four producers of the upcoming documentary Rolling Papers, which details the cannabis culture—both the positive and the negative—in Colorado as told through the reporting and coverage of The Denver Post and The Cannabist. Shapiro, who also has her master’s degree in journalism from the University of Colorado at Boulder, is also a freelance writer and is one of the growing Colorado contingents of young minds who are thoroughly committed to advocating for the arts in Colorado. Ten years from now, given her commitment and passion for local arts and film in particular, expect Shapiro to be the unquestioned leader in experience in the Colorado film industry.
CE: What took you down this career path?
KS: I moved to New York City shortly after college and worked in the fashion and beauty industry—one of which was straight out of a movie (The Devil Wears Prada). My various jobs there gave me unparalleled experience to start my own business a few years after landing in Colorado.
CE: Whom do you most admire?
KS: My parents. They’ve been together for 40 years are still crazy about each other. I feel lucky to have such a strong support system–they’ve never questioned any of my wild ideas and endeavors.
CE: Favorite Denver restaurant?
KS: There’s so many exciting things happening on the culinary scene in Denver, so I try and mix it up. But I love Zaidy’s in Cherry Creek…it feels like home to me.
CE: What are your hobbies?
KS: Skiing, hiking, and traveling.
CE: Are you involved with any charities?
KS: The Denver Film Society, of course. And I support the MCA Denver, Denver Art Museum and Aspen Art Museum. I’m also a part of an exciting new collaboration of young professionals: Cross Cultured. It's goal is to bring us all together in through collaborative events so we can expose our members and new audiences to the many amazing cultural nonprofits in our city.
CE: What surprises people about you?
KS: I have a serious aversion to public speaking.
CE: How do people describe you?
KS: Driven, loyal…and I’d like to think funny.
CE: What was the last great book you read?
KS: Command and Control by Eric Schlosser. He was also the executive producer on the documentary Hanna Ranch I worked on, which premiered in Denver last year.
CE: What is your most memorable Colorado experience?
KS: Climbing my first 14’er. Coming from New York City, it was overwhelming and was the moment that I knew Colorado was where I was supposed to be.
CE: What one word describes Coloradans to you?
CE: What is your favorite spot in Colorado to visit?
KS: Any one of our 14,000 ft. peaks.
CE: What is one thing that you absolutely can’t live without?
KS: Family…Gittel included.
CE: What was your last major purchase?
KS: A trip to Europe last fall with one of my best friends. We went for the Venice Film Festival, but traveled through Italy before and sailed down the coast of Croatia after.
CE: What gadget can you not live without?
KS: I can’t live without my iPhone.
CE: What is your biggest fashion faux pas?
KS: My Dansko clogs—however unsightly, I love them.
CE: What is the most difficult project you have worked on at Katie Shapiro Media?
KS: It’s never the project, but more so a daily balancing act since I wear a few different hats. Sometimes I am the writer, producer, publicist, and in charge of events at the same time.
CE: What is the most memorable project you have worked on at the firm?
KS: It’s happening now actually. I’m a producer on Rolling Papers with an extremely talented group of people that I am honored to be working with. It’s a feature documentary on cannabis culture in Colorado as told through The Denver Post and The Cannabist.
CE: What piece of advice would you give a local business just getting started?
KS: A consistent and strong digital presence. And using those outlets to personally engage with your audience or customers is essential.
CE: How and why have you developed the partnership you have with the Denver Film Society?
KS: After attending the Starz Denver Film Festival in 2009 for the first time, my friend and I (Jenny Bloom) wanted to get more involved in the organization and looked to join their young professionals group. There wasn't anything official at the time, so we decided to start one and presented the DFS with our idea for Reel Social Club. The staff was so supportive with our launch in 2010 and continues to help us grow the program every day.
CE: You are a self-described cinephile. What are your two favorite films?
KS: This is a tough one. Let’s just say my favorite genre is documentaries.
CE: What are the differences between working for your clients in Aspen and Denver?
KS: Denver is a little bit more fast-paced and uses the power of social media to its advantage. I was surprised to find how important traditional media outlets still are in Aspen (there’s more print media in town than most major cities), but it's something I completely appreciate. I'm really fortunate to be able to work in both places.
BIO: Scott S. Evans is graduate of Dartmouth College and the University of Virginia School of Law and is now a single father of two, a business litigation attorney, writer and high school lacrosse coach living in Centennial. Scott has freelanced for various newspapers, magazines, journals and academic publications including the Wall Street Journal and the Manchester Union Leader.