Black and white portrait of a light skinned female with shoulder length brown hair, black turtle neck sweater and fringe earrings.

Colleen Thurston

Tulsa, Oklahoma

Colleen Thurston received the Creative Capital Award in 2024. Colleen Thurston is a filmmaker, curator and educator from Tulsa, Oklahoma. Colleen has produced for the Smithsonian Channel, Vox, illumiNATIVE and museums, public television stations, and federal and tribal organizations. Her work has been supported by ITVS, Vision Maker Media, Firelight Media, Nia Tero, NEH, the Redford Center, Patagonia and the Sundance Institute, screened at international film festivals and the Smithsonian Institution, and been broadcast nationwide. Colleen has served as the co-Executive Director of the Fayetteville Film Festival, the Film Programming Assistant at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian, the founding Director of Programming of Tulsa American Film Festival and is currently a programmer for Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival and Make Believe Film Festival. She has curated film programs for the Momentary (Bentonville, AR), SWAIA’s Native Cinema Showcase (Santa Fe, NM), UCLA Film and Television Archive (Los Angeles, CA) and the National Gallery of Art (Washington, DC). She is an Assistant Professor at the University of Oklahoma, and serves as the Project Producer for Native Lens, an Indigenous digital series for Rocky Mountain PBS and KSUT Tribal Radio. Colleen is a citizen of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma.