Brian Kaufman is the Executive Video Producer at the Detroit Free Press, where he bridges the gap between video journalism and documentary film. Kaufman’s work spans a broad range, from news-driven shorts to feature films on social and environmental issues. The National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences has recognized Kaufman‘s work with three Emmy awards and a nomination in the craft category of Nature and Wildlife Cinematography.
Currently, Kaufman is co-directing and editing Coldwater Kitchen, a character-driven film set in a Michigan prison, where soft-spoken chef Jimmy Lee Hill runs a highly regarded culinary training program, offering inmates a renewed sense of purpose through the craft of fine dining. Formerly, Kaufman directed and edited The Wall, a feature film about President Trump’s proposed border wall that was part of the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Explanatory Reporting. To commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Detroit rebellion, Kaufman directed and edited 12th and Clairmount, an entirely-archival feature film that Variety described as, “a revelatory portrait of the city … illuminating and innovatively crafted.”
Kaufman’s career began with a Visual Journalism degree at Brooks Institute of Photography in California and a job at the Naples Daily News in Florida, where he helped launch the first newspaper-based television newscast in the country. Since joining the Detroit Free Press, Kaufman has been instrumental in facilitating the education of video journalism to other newspaper photographers and reporters, including a USA Today Network initiative that dramatically increased video traffic in newsrooms nationwide.
In his spare time, Kaufman pursues adventure, solitude and fine art photography in wilderness.