Black Harvest Film Festival Awards

Richard and Ellen Sandor Family Prize

2023 marks the sixth year that the Richard and Ellen Sandor Family Black Harvest Film Festival Prize will be awarded to a short film, and the third year the prize has been expanded to also honor a feature film. The prize awards $2500 to the best feature film and $1000 to the best short film. Learn more about the members of this year’s distinguished jury of filmmakers, producers, and cultural leaders: Maya S. Cade, Justice Singleton, and Paige Taul.

All three jury members will be in attendance at Opening Night of Black Harvest, where they will announce the winning films. The winning films will be presented at the Gene Siskel Film Center during the 29th Black Harvest Film Festival, held November 3-16.

Sandor Prize Jury Members


Maya S. Cade headshotMAYA S. CADE (she/her) is the creator and curator of Black Film Archive – a first-of-its-kind digital archive likened to be the definitive history of Black cinema by – an inaugural scholar-in-residence at the Library of Congress, and writer. Cade is the only person in history to win multiple esteemed special critic awards in the same season, receiving special distinctions by the New York Film Critics Circle, the National Society of Film Critics, and the Alliance of Women Film Journalists. Since Black Film Archive’s 2021 launch, Cade’s achievement has been featured in The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, The Hollywood Reporter, NPR, The Paris Review, Vulture, Sight & Sound, and Entertainment Weekly, among countless other publications. In July 2023, Cade was listed on Fast Company’s annual Most Creative Person list. Originally hailing from New Orleans, Cade is based in Brooklyn.


Justice Singleton headshotJUSTICE SINGLETON (he/him) is a Black Transmasculine screenwriter, director, actor, poet, stand-up comedian and drag burlesque artist who lives in New Orleans.  Born and raised in Los Angeles, California, Justice observed the filmmaking process and industry through the mentorship of his late father, director, John Singleton. Justice was inspired by his love of filmmaking and spiritual faith to create a meditative writers’ program called Justify Writers Room. The writer’s workshop enlists BIPOC creators to build community and dismantle “writer’s block” and systemic storytelling. In addition to working as a full-time television and film imagineer, Justice performs stand-up comedy and co-stars in a podcast called Imposter Syndrome Survivor’s Club. The podcast is spiritual audio exploring “Imposter Syndrome” within the creative industry. Currently, Justice Singleton spends time writing, teaching workshops, producing films and performing drag shows and comedy in New Orleans.


PPaige Taul headshotAIGE TAUL (she/her) is an Oakland, CA native who received her B.A. in Studio Art with a concentration in cinematography from the University of Virginia and her M.F.A in Moving Image from the University of Illinois at Chicago.  Her work engages with and challenges assumptions of black cultural expression and notions of belonging through experimental cinematography. As a part of her filmmaking practice, she tests the boundaries of identity and self-identification through autoethnography to approach notions of racial authenticity. She is a visiting artist at the School of the Art Institute in Chicago, IL.