Steps Int’l rebrands as Why Foundation, names CEO

Steps International, the Copenhagen-based non-profit group that organized the "Why Poverty?" doc series, has rebranded as The Why Foundation, and named Christoffer Guldbrandsen (pictured) as its CEO.
September 23, 2014

Steps International, the Copenhagen-based non-profit group that organized the “Why Poverty?” doc series, has rebranded as The Why Foundation, and named Danish filmmaker Christoffer Guldbrandsen (pictured) as its CEO.

The appointment – made by the organization’s board of directors – will be effective on October 1, with Guldbrandsen replacing outgoing CEO Don Edkins, who oversaw the group for 10 years.

As CEO, Guldbrandsen will helm the production, commission and distribution of the organization’s social justice-oriented films and international events.

The Why Foundation oversaw 2007’s “Why Democracy?” series, which featured 10 docs, and most recently, 2012’s “Why Poverty?” series of eight films. Guldbrandsen’s doc Stealing Africa was part of the latter production.

“Christoffer Guldbrandsen comes with a strong background as an acclaimed filmmaker, commissioning editor and public broadcaster,” said Nick Fraser, co-founder of the The Why Foundation and commissioning editor of BBC4’s ‘Storyville’ strand.

“Guldbrandsen’s notion of the current development of media on all platforms is extremely advanced and progressive,” he added. “With [him] on board, The Why Foundation is ready to strengthen and expand its role as an enabler for factual filmmakers around the globe.”

Guldbrandsen added: “The results of The Why Foundation are quite impressive. It is an organisation characterized by a top-level integrity with a staggering potential. I believe there is a real need for films that turns complex issues into personal, strong and accurate storytelling. I’m truly honored, and can’t wait to get started.”

In addition to Fraser, the foundation’s board of directors includes Klara Grunning-Harris, film commissioner at the Danish Film Institute; Mette Hoffmann Meyer, head of documentaries at Danish Broadcaster DR2; Carne Ross, founder and director of Independent Diplomat; and Dan Cogan, co-founder of Impact Partners.

About The Author
Andrew Jeffrey joined Realscreen in 2021 as its news editor. Here, he helps to oversee assignment, reporting and editing for Realscreen's daily newsletter. Prior to his work covering documentary and non-fiction film and TV, he worked as a reporter and associate producer for CBC Edmonton, and as a reporter for The Star Calgary, where he covered daily news on beats such as local and provincial politics, health care and harm reduction, sports and education. His work has appeared in other Canadian news outlets such as TVO, the Edmonton Journal and Avenue Magazine.