Ross has been part of the entertainment and technology industry for more than 30 years, leading companies to more than 15 Academy Award nominations and seven Oscars. Ross first lit up the industry in the 1980s when he led George Lucas’ vast entertainment empire as general manager of Lucasfilm’s Industrial Light and Magic. Under his direction, ILM won five Academy Awards for Visual Effects. In the early 1990s, he was promoted to vice president of LucasArts Entertainment Group.
Ross branched out on his own three years later to create Digital Domain, a large and respected digital production studio in the motion picture and advertising industries. With Ross at the helm, the company was honored with eight Academy Award nominations and received Oscars in 1997. Digital Domain’s commercials division won dozens of Clio Awards as well.
“I’m honored and excited to work with SCAD because of the strength and comprehensiveness of its film and digital media programs,” says Ross. “There’s not another university in the world making this kind of commitment to prepare talented students for creative careers like this university.”
Ross will assist in the university with the strategic planning and equipping of its new location in Hong Kong for excellence in digital media. Scheduled to open in Fall 2010, SCAD’s vision is to make its Hong Kong location the leading site for the study of digital media in Asia.
“This is an exciting time to work with SCAD. The new location will provide unique opportunities for students in Hong Kong, Asia, and the United States,” says Ross. “Hong Kong is widely recognized as the gateway to Asia, where the film and digital media industry is quickly rising in worldwide significance and excellence. SCAD will bring a whole new dimension to preparing students for careers in the industry in Asia.”
In addition to work on SCAD-Hong Kong, Ross will help launch the new SCAD Digital Media Center in Atlanta. Slated to open in September 2009, the Atlanta center expands the university’s digital media programs in the heart of the eighth largest media market in the United States.
“SCAD students already have numerous opportunities to intern and work for leading film, digital media and television companies, but now they have another advantage,” Ross says. “The new Digital Media Center in Atlanta provides them with a cutting-edge learning environment and outstanding faculty. SCAD alumni make great employees because they can step straight from the classroom into the workplace. SCAD’s Digital Media Center will enable them to bring even more value to their employers.”
Ross will assist in equipping this new facility and give classroom lectures at SCAD in both Atlanta and Savannah. In addition, he will participate in student and industry workshops at the university’s annual Savannah Film Festival, scheduled for Oct. 31-Nov. 7.