Ashley Smith is an Executive Assistant in Business Affairs at Lucasfilm, which means that she supports attorneys in her department who make and paper the talent deals for episodic and feature projects across animation and live-action. Her three-year anniversary with The Walt Disney Company will be in June.
What do you find most rewarding about your experience as a BERG (Business Employee Resource Groups) member?
I’m a Global Co-Lead of Circuit, a BERG for underrepresented genders at Lucasfilm. Meeting folks around the globe, learning more about the visual effects industry, collaborating with leadership at Lucasfilm and ILM, and meeting so many lovely people across the enterprise has made this experience so rewarding. I’ve been given room to grow and blossom, learn more about my strengths, and really step into my power as a communicator and collaborator.
What does a reimagined tomorrow look like for you?
Personally, I’d like to see more tolerance, more patience, and more empathy everywhere. Professionally, we are humans before we are Cast Members and I hope that as we reimagine what it looks like to work here that we give folks space to be human. That means flexibility and environments in which folks feel safe to voice dissent and pursue their interests. It means challenging the status quo inside of our own organizations in pursuit of the future we all want to see.
What makes Disney an exceptional place for storytelling?
Exceptional storytelling happens here at The Walt Disney Company and certainly at Lucasfilm, not only because of the vast intellectual property catalog at our fingertips but because of the folks who are passionate about telling these stories and using their imagination to go deeper into these worlds. This shows up in my work as animated characters move into live-action, as live-action characters move across shows, and like those shows continue to explore new reaches of this galaxy far, far away.
Why is innovation so important when it comes to Disney’s stories?
Innovation is so important because we must constantly be moving forward. Whether it’s sharing fresh perspectives, highlighting different voices, approaching problems from various angles, or using new technology to transport audiences. If we don’t, the stories are not satisfying to produce nor consume.
Business Employee Resource Groups (BERGs) are formed around a shared identity, interest, or pursuits. These employee-led groups bring together employees for insights, support, career development, and community engagement. All colleagues are welcomed and encouraged to join.
by Disney Career Recruitment