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April 7, 2017

Meet Rachel Kahn Taylor

As an Associate Producer for WLIW, Rachel Kahn Taylor is working on several Treasures of New York films that are currently in production, as well as the upcoming series Treasures of New Jersey. “My roles in these projects include research, assisting on shoots, and fact checking,” Rachel says. Read on to learn about Rachel’s work on these popular local series, her favorite places in Brooklyn, and more.

Rachel Kahn Taylor

Rachel Kahn Taylor

What is your background, and how did you land at WNET?

I majored in documentary film and was so fortunate that my very first internship after graduating in 2010 was working at WNET on Women, War and Peace. After that amazing experience came to an end, I kept looking for projects that would bring me back to WNET. In the meantime, I did freelance work for a variety of companies, doing everything from long-form documentaries like the PBS series Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide to working as an associate producer and production manager on branded content for the web.

You’re working on several upcoming Treasures of New York films. Tell us about these exciting premieres and your work on them.

The Drama League, which aired in March, was the first Treasure I worked on from start to finish, so it was great to see the process of getting that on air. The next one to finish will be Treasures of New Jersey: Fairleigh Dickinson University – Florham. For that one, I’ve been assisting on the shoots, as well as working on licensing archival material and fact checking. The next two Treasures of New York episodes I’m working on are Rails-to-Trails, which is in edit and will air in May, and The Jerome L. Greene Center, which we’ve just started to edit. For those two, I’ve been doing similar tasks: research, archival, and fact checking.

Treasures of New Jersey reunites you with Sally Garner, with whom you worked on Military Medicine: Beyond the Battlefield. Can you talk about your role in these NJTV productions?

It was a really great experience to work on Military Medicine. I’ve been interested in issues relating to the military for a long time and it was such an honor to help tell the stories of these incredible men and women. I came in halfway through production, so all of the filming had been completed. My job was working with Sally, Ally Gimbel, and our editor Lisa to get archival material and to fact check the script.

Working on Treasures of New Jersey has also been an incredible learning experience. The debut episode is about a Gilded Age mansion in New Jersey owned by a Vanderbilt family. It’s a whole part of history that I knew little about before working on this project.

For our Media with Impact campaign, we’ve been asking viewers to share stories describing how THIRTEEN has influenced their life. How has THIRTEEN (or the PBS station of your childhood) inspired you?

I grew up in Seattle, so my PBS station was KCTS or channel 9. My parents were really strict with TV when I was young, but of course I was allowed to watch PBS. I usually watched Shining Time Station or The Magic School Bus. I’m still convinced that everything I know about science is from Ms. Frizzle.

Which three shows airing on our stations this month are you most likely to watch, stream, or record?

I’m interested in the documentary Newtown from Independent Lens, the three-part American Experience series The Great War, and this month’s new SciTech Now episode.

Where do you live, and what are some of your favorite places in your neighborhood?

I live just south of Atlantic Terminal in Brooklyn, basically at the intersection of Park Slope, Gowanus, and Boerum Hill. My favorite coffee shop is Hungry Ghost on Flatbush Avenue. I love going there to relax with a good book on the weekend. I’m a member of the Park Slope Food Coop. It’s a total cult, but I love shopping there and feeling like I’m part of a community. I also enjoy living close to Prospect Park in the warmer months, especially with the free outdoor concerts.

What book are you currently reading?

I’m just finishing up Erik Larson’s Dead Wake about the sinking of the Lusitania. I’m not sure if it is the inner filmmaker in me, but I keep thinking it would make a great series for PBS, a little Downton Abbey meets Titanic.

Do you have a special interest or hobby outside of work? If so, tell us about it!

I don’t have a specific hobby, but I do enjoy spending time with my friends and cooking. My friends and I often do “family dinner” where we get together and cook a Sunday night dinner.

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