Milton I. Moritz has announced that he will be retiring from his position as President & CEO of the National Association of Theatre Owners of California/Nevada, after having served in that capacity for the past 23 years. The trade association represents California and Nevada member theatres in matters of common interest related to trade practices, legislative issues and lobbying, among other areas.
Moritz’s retirement is effective January 31, 2022, the Association’s Executive Committee is undertaking a search for his successor.
Under Moritz’s stewardship, the Association has grown from 35 member companies to 63 companies, today representing 4,682 screens in California and Nevada. Among the Association’s programs he introduced are college and vocational school scholarship grants awarded to field level member theatres’ employees and family members, and scholarship grants to aspiring filmmakers attending the film schools at UCLA and USC.
Moritz also began the Association’s community outreach efforts, with grants being presented to deserving organizations serving underprivileged and at-risk youth, feeding the hungry, combating substance abuse, and programs aiding children with disabilities and members of the LGBTQ community. Between the college scholarship grants and the grants to community organizations, the Association has distributed in excess of $8,000,000.00.
A longtime motion picture industry executive, Moritz headed the advertising and publicity department from its inception at American Releasing Corporation, later to become American International Pictures (AIP), where he served as Senior Vice President, Advertising, Publicity and Promotion until his departure in 1979 when the company was acquired by Filmways to form his own marketing/consulting firm, the Milton I. Moritz Company.
While at AIP, Moritz was responsible for the campaigns that distinguished the company’s youth oriented and action films which defined America’s pop culture of the 1950’s, 60’s and 70’s, including a series of “Beach Party” movies, a string of Vincent Price horror films, Pam Grier’s succession of urban action films, and such classics as “I was a Teenage Werewolf,” “The Wild Angles,” “The Amityville Horror,” among many others.
Prior to assuming his position at NATO of California/Nevada, Moritz served as Vice President, Advertising & Publicity for Los Angeles-based Pacific Theatres for six years.
“It has been a privilege to serve NATO of California/Nevada for the past 23 years and to have remained so intimately involved in an industry which I have always loved,” said Moritz. “I can think of no more fitting way of concluding my working years than leaving a position in the same field I entered when I had my own theatre at the age of 21.”