By trade Brandon Cohen is a talent manager, working with actors, musicians and fashion model clients under the banner of his bicoastal management company BAC Talent. He also serves as an associate producer on the Daytime Emmy Awards Events with P&L media.
But Cohen has also kept a firm toehold in the world of philanthropy, namely when it comes to helping children with autism and special needs. Over the past decade, Cohen has partnered to help raise funds for Autism Speaks and other autism-focused charity initiatives.
Not only is Cohen a manager, but a certified occupational therapist, a service he continues to practice on a part-time basis. Several times a month, you can also find Cohen volunteering with children with autism, taking them to dinner, the park and helping them with their homework.
“My mother was a leading educator of special needs children for over 30 years and inspired me to become an occupational therapist,” says Cohen. “Then, over a decade ago, my client Raoul Mongilardi produced one of the first distributed and groundbreaking documentaries on the subject, ‘The Changing Face of Autism.’ More recently, just a few years ago in fact, we co-produced with Lisa Lew, a fundraiser for the local Los Angeles chapter of Autism Speaks, Gifting Your Spectrum.”
Cohen has produced a slew of other fundraisers as well, including those for Project angel Food and Bailey House, an org that provides support for those with HIV.
“Each event is like a film in that it has a life in development, production and post-production or recap,” says Cohen. “Producing events require patience, give and take, trouble-shooting, and a need to stay flexible with your team and talent to make the event shine, and most importantly, to keep the spotlight on the purpose of the event.”