Mary Pergola Parent

Mary Pergola Parent headshot

Adjunct Assistant Professional Specialist in Film, Television, and Theatre
LL.M International Human Rights Law, Notre Dame Law School 
J.D., Ave Maria School of Law
B.A., University of Notre Dame


Area of Specialization: the exploration of the law and jurisprudential themes in films, television shows, documentaries, and newscasts. 

Classes: Perspectives on Law & Order; Law and Film: Images of Justice;  Lights, Camera, Murder:  Film, Television, and the Law

Mary Pergola Parent comes from a filmmaker lineage and grew up in the television and film industry.  Her grandfather Vincent “Jimmy” Pergola, traveled the world as a Fox Movie Tone & Pathe’ News “newsreel cameraman.”  Mary watched and learned from her father, Director of Photography, James C. Pergola A.S.C.  She spent her childhood on the movie sets of major motion pictures, Emmy Award winning television specials, and classic TV shows like Flipper and Baywatch.  After graduating from the University of Notre Dame in 1986 with a degree in Communication and Theatre, Mary worked on numerous films, television pilots, and commercials.  In 1989, she embraced television journalism and joined both the production and news teams of CBS affiliate WCSC-TV. During her years in television news, she worked as Director of Public Service Productions, Production Coordinator, and Audio Director.

Mary earned the On-Air position of Movie Critic, and enjoyed producing her unique vox populi Movie Reviews for many years.  In 1990, Mary was honored to be part of the WCSC-TV Production and News teams that won the George Foster Peabody Award for their coverage of Hurricane Hugo. 

Intrigued by stories of justice and injustice, Mary decided to pursue a law degree.  While earning her Juris Doctorate, Mary won the St. Thomas More & St. Thomas Aquinas Award, as well as the St. Ives Award - In Defense of the Catholic Faith

Mary is dedicated to supporting students in their journey as filmmakers.  She has established two Endowments at the University of Notre Dame to benefit the student filmmakers in the Department of Film, Television, and Theatre: The Broad Avenue Filmmakers Award and the Mary Pergola Parent and Dr. Thomas Parent Endowment for Excellence in Filmmaking.