Leelai Demoz joined Steppenwolf as Associate Artistic Director in 2019. He has had a varied career in the arts, on stage, in front and behind the camera. He is a founding partner of Small Ax, a digital production company/agency based in Venice, CA. Demoz produced the award-winning film DIFRET (2014 Sundance World Cinema and 2014 Berlin Panorama Audience Awards). He was nominated for an Academy and Emmy Award for the documentary film On TipToe, which is a profile of Ladysmith Black Mambazo and was directed by ensemble member Eric Simonson. His other work has been seen on MTV, Discovery, Travel Channel and BET. He also directed a set of ‘get out the vote’ public service announcements for the William Jefferson Clinton Foundation, featuring LL Cool J and Alicia Keys. As an actor he has appeared at several Chicago area theaters as well as The Kennedy Center, The National Theater of Great Britain and Broadway. His first professional stage production was at Steppenwolf Theatre in The Grapes of Wrath. Outside of the arts, Mr. Demoz has consulted with the United Institute of Peace and served on a working group for a project with The William Jefferson Clinton Foundations Rwanda initiative. He is a board member of The Schoolhouse Foundation and of Action Civics California (Mikva Challenge).