City Media Meet the team

City Media is a full-service creative entertainment company delivering every aspect of a project from concept to completion. We specialize in creating award-winning compelling content through their fresh approach and expertise in casting, development, and production.

We have also built a successful digital marketing department, specializing in building brand partnerships that organically cultivate and grow targeted audiences for their respective clients.

Rebecca Reczek

Principal

As a proud Los Angeles native, Rebecca was born with an unwavering determination to accomplish whatever she set her sights on. Raised in a tight knit family who taught her the value of hard work, her father came to the U.S. to pursue the “American Dream.” From him, Rebecca learned the art of the hustle, acquiring a strong business sense and street smarts, while developing a spirited desire to one day become her own boss. Living in the film and television mecca of the world, the entertainment industry has always been in her blood. After obtaining her degree in Management and Economics from the University of California, San Diego, Rebecca knew she was destined to start her own business and she made it her mission to do just that. She began working in the world of reality television casting and has never looked back. Her expertise in business management gives her the ability to craft a unique model for success in every project she undertakes. Always hungry for the next big challenge, Rebecca’s resume spans shows for 14 different networks, including game shows such as Don’t Forget the Lyrics, and Duel; dating shows including Baggage and Must Love Kids; competition shows such as America’s Toughest Jobs and Bullrun; and social experiment shows including Trading Spouses. After teaming with Jodi Thomas to form City Media Entertainment in 2011, Rebecca has taken her skills to the next level through casting such shows as FOX’s The Four: Battle for Stardom, NBC’s Best Time Ever with Neil Patrick Harris and FOX’s Superhuman, just to name a few. When she isn’t working on a show, you can find Rebecca socializing with friends in Hermosa Beach or strengthening her L.A. roots by connecting with family.

Jodi Thomas

Principal

Jodi comes with a wealth of experience in pilot and series casting. Her diverse credits include game shows such as Deal or No Deal; competition shows like The Biggest Loser and Beauty and the Geek; dating shows such as Tough Love and Age of Love and docu-series like Extreme Weight Loss. Before discovering her love for reality television in 2004, Jodi came from a background in public relations and high-profile event production working in conjunction with the Emmys, People’s Choice Awards, ESPY’s and Golden Globe Awards. Her extensive experience with the public and media has given her a one-of-a-kind edge in developing creative strategies and targeting niche casting pools. Jodi first discovered her talent for interviewing and finding captivating personalities while working as a news reporter for an NBC affiliate while attending college. She graduated from Texas Tech University with a Bachelor of Arts in Communications and continued her career at the local news station. She moved to Dallas and quickly began building experience in cable and network television, working on scripted shows such as Walker, Texas Ranger and PBS’s Wishbone series. To this day, she holds a sharp production sense and unwavering passion for entertainment, industry networking, project development and website design (her personal passion). Since forming City Media Entertainment with Rebecca Reczek in 2011, Jodi has refined her skills through the casting of such shows as FOX’s The Four: Battle for Stardom, NBC’s Hollywood Game Night and FOX’s Hell's Kitchen, just to name a few. When Jodi isn’t working in the office or in client meetings, you can find her at home in the South Bay spending time with her son, Bronson.

DJ Feldman

Principal

With more than 20 years of entertainment industry experience, DJ has developed a diverse skillset, allowing him to constantly adapt to the ever-changing needs of the entertainment industry. After graduating from Ohio State University with a degree in broadcasting, DJ packed up his car and headed west to Los Angeles, where he began pursuing a career as a sports and entertainment reporter. After a few months in LA, he switched paths and began performing stand-up comedy at various local clubs and venues, opening up for some of his favorite comedians. One thing led to another, and DJ was hired to work for the legendary comic, Garry Shandling, as a production assistant on the hit HBO series, The Larry Sanders Show, at CBS- Radford. He also worked in television and feature development at Jason Alexander’s company, AngelArk. After several years in scripted TV production, DJ entered the world of unscripted casting, where he worked on the hit game show The Weakest Link in 2001, as well as the CBS reboot of Star Search where he served as the Comedy Talent Producer. He joined the casting team of the NBC weight loss series The Biggest Loser, where he worked for 15 seasons. He has also helped cast other major reality franchises, including Beauty and The Geek, America’s Got Talent, American Ninja Warrior, Bar Rescue and Extreme Weight Loss. His personal passion for sports and wrestling have served DJ well during the casting of competition shows such as Pros vs. Joes, Shaq Vs., and 4th and Long with Michael Irvin. He has also served as a consultant for WWE, having “discovered” several current and former stars on WWE’s Tough Enough, RAW, and Smackdown. DJ has truly come a long way since his days as an assistant on the CBS lot. He married the love of his life, Megan, in 2013, and four years later, they welcomed their son into the world. When he isn’t working on a show, DJ can be found spending time with his family, hiking, watching the WWE network and reliving his youth by going to 80’s hair metal band concerts.

Josh Thrower

Team Manager

Originally from Colorado, Josh grew up in the Rocky Mountains playing basketball and football and spending time enjoying the great outdoors. He earned his degree in Film Studies at The University of Colorado at Boulder. Josh has worked in the Los Angeles film & television industry for more than a decade, in casting, production, and performing. He’s a long-time member of SAG-AFTRA and has worked in front of the camera on shows such as The Young & The Restless and was a series regular on the Daytime Emmy-nominated digital drama series Winterthorne. Josh joined City Media Entertainment in 2015, but has worked with Rebecca Reczek since 2007. His skillset ranges from office coordinating and audio/visual expertise to digital marketing, copywriting, and project management. Aside from his professional passions, Josh is a self-proclaimed aficionado of all things rap and hip-hop. He’s admittedly a huge Tupac fan as well and can recite the lyrics from nearly all his songs. When Josh isn’t working on a show, you can find him spending quality time with his girlfriend, Crystal, out in nature hiking, camping, running marathons and exploring national parks.

Sarah Michelson

Brand Partnerships / Social Media

Growing up in Miami, Florida, Sarah was surrounded by a diverse melting pot of arts and culture from a young age. Singing was always her first love and she knew from the first time she sang for an audience that the entertainment industry would be in her future. She eventually received a music scholarship from American Heritage, a prestigious performing arts school, where she continued to cultivate her talent. This opportunity led her to win many vocal awards across the country, as well as on a global level, when she performed for more than 15,000 people in the Philippines. She was also featured as an Emerging Artist on MTV Asia. Sarah went on to attend UCLA and Musicians Institute to further hone in on her craft. While working on degree in Ethnomusicology, she began posting videos on YouTube and quickly earned more than 200,000 views on her first video. She soon signed with a popular YouTube network and quickly fell in love with the business side of music. She loved working behind the scenes and saw where the future of entertainment was headed. She began developing creative concepts with talent and soon attracted brand partnerships with premium beauty, lifestyle, and fashion digital influencers (1 million to 10 million+ subscriber range). Through her digital marketing management experience with several leading networks and studios, Sarah has accelerated her skillset in helping well-known influencers partner with brands such as L’Oreal, Sephora, and Postmates, among others. She has overseen events, red carpets, and meet & greets at VidCon, BeautyCon, Playlist LIVE, Generation Beauty, Coachella, and more. Sarah continues to focus on building cross-promotional business relationships, as she joins the City Media Entertainment team. She brings several years of entertainment industry insight and digital branding experience to the table, already proving to be a valuable asset as City Media strengthens its’ efforts on all aspects of the industry. When Sarah isn’t building digital relationships and coordinating large-scale events, she can be found singing for L.A. audiences, traveling the world and strengthening her yoga/meditation practice, as well as deepening her connections to her family, boyfriend and close friends.

EXTENDED TEAM

Amber Wines

Sr Casting Director

Amber is originally from Des Moines, IA, but has called LA home for the last 10 years. She received a BFA in Musical Theatre from Rockford University and traveled around the country for many years performing before settling down in Los Angeles. In the last 10 years, Amber has worked her way up the ranks in the casting world. She has worked for networks such as NBC, ABC, FOX, MTV, VH1, Game Show Network and Spike to name a few. Some of her favorite shows to cast have been "The Four: Battle for Stardom", "Bring The Funny", "Hollywood Game Night", "Extreme Chef", "Divided", "Hell's Kitchen" and "Caraoke Showdown". Amber has been working on and off with City Media Ent since the beginning, she was actually in the room when they decided to form the company. When not casting, Amber can be found hanging out with her fiancé, Mike, cuddling her puppies, Jasper and Buttercup, or belting it out at local Karaoke bars.

Nathan Baker

Sr Casting Director

An Austin, TX native, Nathan has been living in Los Angeles for the last 12 years. After graduating from Pepperdine University in 2012, he quickly worked his way up in the casting world. Nathan has worked on a variety of unscripted shows, from competition and game shows to dating shows and beyond. Some of his most notable credits include American Ninja Warrior, Undercover Boss, and Dating #NoFilter, to name a few. When Nathan is not casting, he can be found with a camera in hand shooting weddings and family portraits.

MICHAEL CIMINO

Casting Director

With more than 10 years in the industry, Michael has worked in nearly every facet of production from development and casting to producing and post production on shows running the gamut from Undercover Boss (CBS) to The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills (BRAVO). His passion for people combined with his experience heavily rooted in casting, he has built a reputation for his strong interview skills, consistently aiming to pull out the best from the people he’s speaking with. Michael’s strong sense of wanderlust and desire for experiencing other cultures has brought him to Southeast Asia over the past several months, where he is currently working remotely. He is grateful for the opportunity to explore the world while casting projects he is passionate about.

Wayo Benavides

Casting Producer

Wayo Benavides is an award winning Director and Producer as well as an accomplished Writer, Editor and Videographer, keeping a hand in all levels of Production. His dedication for leadership and teamwork have always been truly evident in his work, but became obvious during his studies at The Art Institute of Dallas where he thrived and discovered his love of all things entertainment and has since developed into a remarkable filmmaker whose talents have earned him manifold awards, including a “Silver Telly” which was granted to him for his work with Camp Summit. From Texas to Los Angeles his countless abilities were noted throughout his 10 years in the industry. Now working as a Casting Producer Wayo has worked with networks such as Netflix, NBC, ABC, Fox, Nickelodeon, Food Network and shows like Hell's Kitchen, Bring The Funny, Teen Mom OG, Big Brother, and now Making the Band. As Benavides walks onto a new project, it is instantaneously cloaked with his bright, infectious, and undeniable energy that lends his crew the determination and passion needed to complete the job at hand and accomplish a successful production. This energy is prominent in everything Wayo does, whether it be casting a film, editing a project, or simply having a conversation and creating new ties and connections with anyone he speaks with. Wayo Benavides is a man of zealous character and displays fervent passion and the pure simplicity of just truly caring for everything he does and wishes only to create and share it with everyone he can.

TORRIEL SIMON

Sr Casting Producer

Torriel has been a casting producer for many years. She has worked on Showtime at the Apollo for FOX, Signed for MTV, Rhythm and Flow for Netflix and many more. She is currently the senior casting producer on MTV Making the Band for Majors Casting and City Media Ent. 

JOSHUA HEART

Casting Producer

Joshua Heart is a Casting Producer, singer/songwriter from Atlanta, Georgia who has worked and performed with artist such as Ciara, Mariah Carey, A Tribe Called Quest, Beyonce and more.   After moving to Los Angeles, Joshua immersed himself in other areas of entertainment and began casting shows such as The Wall (NBC), The Bachelor (season 21 / ABC), The Game of Dating (TV ONE), The Four (season 1 & 2 / FOX) and MTV’s Making The Band’ (reboot) with Sean “Diddy” Combs just to name a few.

JAZMYN MICHEL

Casting Producer

Grammy-winning singer-songwriter who has written and worked with the likes of Beyonce, Tori Kelly, Chris Brown, Dr. Dre, Diddy, etcetera. She continues to be on the leading edge of discovering new talent as a Casting Producer/A&R for unscripted music tv - America’s Got Talent, American Idol, Showtime at The Apollo, The Four and currently MTV/Diddy’s Making The Band (reboot).

JERRY WAYNE

Casting Producer

Jerry is a Casting Producer who confidently believes 87% of his jokes are funny and that Nas' album 'It Was Written' was even better than 'Illmatic.' He hails from Evanston, IL and is a proud University of Pittsburgh alum even though he doesn't donate. Over the last 10 years, Jerry has been a part of some amazing projects as a writer, producer, or casting producer including his current project, MTV's Making The Band reboot with Majors Casting and City Media. Other projects include Netflix's Rhythm + Flow, Comedy Central's Legends of Chamberlain Heights, NFL Network's Total Access and more.

JEREL WILHORT

Casting Associate

Jerel got his start in the entertainment world by operating cameras and editing footage for TMZ. But, he got his start in reality TV casting shortly after an internship with MTV; helping the network cast one of its most popular dating shows - Parental Control. Since then he has contributed to several major production companies, casting shows such as CBS’s Undercover Boss, Patti Stanger’s Millionaire Matchmaker, ABC’s To Tell the Truth, USA Network’s Temptation Island, and many more. Jerel has been an integral part of the teams that have cast pilots that have gone onto series - such as TLC’s Married by Mom & Dad, MTV’s Epic Win, Lifetime’s We Do, to name a few. He recently entered the world of commercial casting and was the Casting Director for three national Folgers Coffee commercials. Jerel has worked on a variety of genres – from dating to game shows to docuseries to animals to national commercials. He is a one-stop-shop in the casting world. He’s able to create professional flyers, setup & operate camera, conduct compelling interviews, and create/edit riveting casting reels. He loves casting and that is reflected in his work.

DIMITRI VILLANUEVA

Casting Associate

Dimitri was born and raised in the western suburbs of Chicago. Graduating from Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa, he received his BA in TV Production/Media Studies, and a Minor in Music. Dimitri's life long dream was to move to Los Angeles and produce in the entertainment industry - and in the fall of 2019, he did just that. Dimitri jumped right into casting, and has worked for networks such as NBC, CBS, ABC, and Netflix. In his spare time, Dimitri enjoys making videos, and staying active by hiking, snowboarding, skating, and playing sports. He also loves to sing and play his piano and guitar.

KENYAN PENCEAL

Casting Assoc Producer

Kenyan “Ken Pen” Penceal is a native of Brooklyn,New York, raised in church where he discovered his passion for music. He’s a graduate of Baruch College where he majored in Entrepreneurship & Music Business. As a young man, he was heavily influenced by music impresarios Berry Gordy, LA Reid and Sean "Diddy" Combs. He is a professional songwriter and music executive who has worked as an A&R most recently for Sony music. In 2018, he completed a stint with Fox’s #1 rated music television show “The Four” where he assisted as a talent scout. Most recently, under the aegis of his entertainment company WilPen, he relaunched his musical showcase “NEXT”, a platform designed for emerging talent in various genres of music and geared towards artist development. He is currently gearing up for the release of his “Trap Soul” artist King Midas’ debut project “ADHP”. Kenyan believes in being mentored by those more seasoned even as he is by industry veterans Mario Winans and Gordon Chambers. He’s an advocate for being a student of whatever industry you’re in or aspire to occupy. His philosophy is preparation precedes platform. If you work diligently, do your best behind closed doors, then those with the key will eventually find you, consequently granting you access to the rooms they are in.