Jim Virga has been a professional visual storyteller for more than 20 years. He has worked as a still photojournalist, cinematographer, director, producer, and has taught photojournalism for three universities. He is currently teaching in the Visual Journalism department at The University of Miami.
After completing his undergraduate degree at The University of Florida, Virga worked as a staff photographer for The Sun-Sentinel for ten years (1989-1999), and previously as a staffer for The Orlando Sentinel and The Leesburg Commercial. His photographs from assignments covering history in such spots as Cuba, Panama, and Honduras have received national recognition. A seasoned photojournalist, Virga's work has appeared in a wide variety of newspapers and magazines.
Virga has participated as a multimedia coach at The Eddie Adams Workshop, Beyond Bootcamp Workshop, and Special Olympics Live. He is currently working as a director/producer for The Knight Center on a documentary about international women photojournalists.
In 2001 Virga was awarded an MA in Visual Arts and Communications from the Newhouse School of Communication at Syracuse University. While at Newhouse, he studied digital filmmaking, and received a $50,000 grant to direct “Dancing on Mother Earth,” a documentary for Native American Public Television about a year in the life of singer/activist Joanne Shenandoah. The film was broadcast on PBS, and played at several film festivals. In 2006, Virga’s short documentary “El Charango” was an official selection at the SILVERDOCS AFI/DISCOVERY Documentary Film Festival. “El Charango” is distributed by Third World Newsreel.