Judy Hoffman is a member of the award-winning documentary group, Kartemquin Films, and played a major role in their formation. She was active in the Alternative Television Movement of the 1970’s, experimenting in the use of small format video equipment, and was a producer on It’s A Living, based on Studs Terkel’s book “Working.” The first woman film Camera Assistant in Chicago, Hoffman was a union apprentice on feature films such as The Breakfast Club, but ultimately chose documentary. Her credits include numerous productions with independent filmmakers such as: Albert Maysles; Ken Burns; Barbara Kopple; Jill Godmilow; Michelle Citron; and Kartemquin Films.
As a student, she worked with the French ethnographic filmmaker Jean Rouch, and became deeply influenced by his innovative work in cinéma vérité and shared anthropology. A major focus of Hoffman’s work has been with the ‘Namgis First Nation of British Columbia, producing films and videotapes about the reclaiming of Native culture.
Hoffman received a VOICE Media Activism Award from Chicago's Center for Community and Media, and received the Nelson Algren Committee Award for “community activists making a significant contribution to Chicago life.” She received her MFA from Northwestern University, and holds an appointment as Professor of Practice in the Arts in the Department of Cinema and Media Studies at the University of Chicago.