Mike Gray is an educator and filmmaker who currently teaches film and communications at South Puget Sound Community College in Olympia, Washington.
His creative work includes the award-winning short film and color extravaganza The Arachnafist, Akron/Family’s music video “Silly Bears,” as seen on MTV2, the web-series Terry Tucker the Midnight Trucker, which follows truck driver Terry and his impromptu conversations with his eclectic ride-a-longs, and LJ’s Trip, a bawdy web-series about the exploits of a bumbling time-traveling educator. Most recently his short film Turkey Breasts was included as part of opening night in the ReelAbilities Disability Film Festival in St. Paul, Minnesota.
He has also created film and video for community organizations, non-profits, and artists with missions of social justice. For the disabilities advocacy groups End the Wait Now in Maryland and the ARC of North Carolina, he produced the respective videos “Caroline,” with 80,000+ hits, and “Kira,” with 30,000+ hits; the latter was also featured on Upworthy.com. For the youth leadership program Mentoring Peace Through Art, which serves young individuals with social needs from diverse communities, he has worked with internationally recognized Chicano artist Jimmy Longoria to create a range of video documentation while also providing filmmaking training. Most recently, Mike also completed a documentary on a community mural led by artist Olivia Levins Holden at 4200 Cedar Ave. in Minneapolis for the Independent Filmmaker Project and Forecast Public Art.
As an educator, Mike has taught a wide array of courses at South Puget Sound Community College, North Hennepin Community College, Ohio University, The University of Essex, and Georgian Court University. The courses have included: film production both traditional (16mm) and digital, communications, screenwriting, film studies and history, TV studies, mass and popular culture, introduction to American literature, and special topic classes on writers in Hollywood and Roger Corman.
Gray holds an MFA in filmmaking from Ohio University as well as a Ph.D. from the University of Essex (U.K.) where his research dealt with Southern American novelist William Faulkner and his screenplays written in Hollywood.
Mike resides in Olympia, Washington, and still finds time on Sundays to play old-school pen-and-paper RPGs with his friends.