Raised in the NW, Michael attended the University of Washington and Western Washington University. After he procured an MA in Literature (with a focus on film), Michael taught at Utah State University, Santa Fe Community College and at the College of Santa Fe in their Moving Image Arts program. He continued teaching film and writing at Whatcom Community College in Bellingham, WA. He has been the Program Director for the last 20 years at Pickford Film Center, where he founded and continues to program Doctober Film Festival, an annual celebration of the best docs of the year with 50+ films appearing annually throughout the month of October. In 2014, Michael and his wife, Susan Tive, launched City Lights Cinemas, a hybrid commercial-arthouse-performing arts 4-plex in the small coastal community of Florence, Oregon, witnessing all over again the power of community cinema to make the world a better place.
Born in Pennsylvania, Susan has been migrating West since her first trip to the Grand Canyon while in high school. After escaping the East Coast she settled in Santa Fe, New Mexico and raised three children, built an off-the-grid adobe house, and earned a BA in Science and an MA in Liberal Arts. 25 years later, she headed further West (and North) to Bellingham WA and co-founded Red Wheelbarrow Writers collaborative and conceived of and edited Beyond Belief, an anthology of women’s stories about extreme religions published by Seal Press. She also worked as the Development Director for Pickford Film Center. Since 2010 she has been the Head of Philanthropy for Salt Lake Film Society in Salt Lake City, Utah and since 2014, with her husband Michael Falter, the co-owner of City Lights Cinemas, in Florence, Oregon.
Alex started his career at City Lights Cinemas as an aspiring film director, musician, and local community theater actor. He's performed in musicals like the Last Resort Player's productions of Cabaret and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and acted in plays like Class Act Theater's productions of Sylvia and Proof. He's also written and directed short films of his own and worked as a Production Assistant on the 2020 feature film Clementine, shot and filmed mainly in Florence, Oregon. City Lights Cinemas became the perfect place for him to express his love of cinema and the arts by getting to see a side of the movie-making process he rarely had the opportunity to witness. Alex moved from a full-time popcorn-slinger to the Digital Marketing Manager in charge of advertising and marketing before becoming Manager and Director of Operations in 2020. When he's not at City Lights, Alex likes to write screenplays and hopes to someday direct a film that he can show at City Lights.
Jared began his position at City Lights while he was an instructor with Lane Community College (LCC) at Florence, teaching film history classes on topics ranging from the Screwball Comedy genre to Humphrey Bogart. After a brief stint in Hollywood during the light 90s, he learned he was more interested in the history of film and theater than the industry itself. Jared graduated from the University of Utah with a degree in theater studies while supporting himself doing medical research for the United States Veterans Administration. His eye turned to teaching, and he began to pursue a career in teaching. But an unexpected move to Florence led Jared to seek other ways to teach. He began leading local discussions on the history of cinema, which he had focused on in college, including editing film history textbooks for historical accuracy, including Catholics in the Movies. Soon after, he was approached by LCC to lead a discussion group for them. This led Jared to reach out to Michael Falter, asking if the theater could be used to hold the discussion, along with screenings of the films. A friendship developed between Jared and the staff and owners of City Lights, where he was hired on as the Education Director including special events such as playing HAL 9000 from 2001: A Space Odyssey to Alfred Hitchcock introducing his film Vertigo. It’s a tradition that Jared hopes to continue in 2021 and beyond.