In Memoriam: Julia Reichart, 1946-2022

Julia Reichert, the Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker and long-time faculty member at Wright State University in Ohio, died on December 1 at her home in Yellow Springs, Ohio. She was 76 years old and had suffered from urothelial cancer.

A native of Princeton, New Jersey, Reichart began her long career in film as an undergraduate at Antioch College in Yellow Springs. There, her first film – Growing Up Female – was a 49-minute documentary that was made for $2,000. In 2011, Growing Up Female was added to the Library of Congress’s National Film Registry. The film is considered the first feature documentary of the modern women’s liberation movement.

Reichert received Academy Awards nominations for the films Union Maids in 1977, Seeing Red in 1984, and The Last Truck: Closing of a GM Plant in 2010. She won the Academy Award for American Factory in 2020, which focuses on the opening of the Fuyao Glass America plant at the site of a former General Motors truck plant in Moraine, Ohio. The documentary captures the complicated relationship between Fuyao, the Chinese windshield glass manufacturer that owns the new plant, and its American employees, some of whom worked at the GM truck plant before it closed in 2008, putting more than 1,000 workers out of jobs. The film was financially backed by Barack and Michelle Obama. Reichart also won two primetime Emmy Awards.

Reichart joined the faculty at Wright State University in 1985 and taught there for more than a quarter century.

Filed Under: In Memoriam


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