News & InfoEP StoreAcademySupportCommunityProducts by Country
Blog Home

Spotlight: Davida Lara, Executive Vice President, Payroll Services

Meet the dynamic leader who challenges what it means to be in payroll
February 18, 2021

Staff Writer

Davida Lara, CCP, Entertainment Partners’ Executive Vice President of Payroll Services doesn’t fit the traditional mold of a payroll head, and that suits her just fine. With a background that spans 20+ years in industries including music, food, pharmaceuticals, and private equity, Davida leads with passion and takes pride in innovation.

”Payroll is the bridge between livelihood and life – it’s the lifeblood of the working world. It’s fast-paced, exciting, impactful. It’s sexy!”

Davida is equally well known for her campaign to change the perception of payroll as dull and inflexible, maintaining that “Payroll is Sexy!” For Davida, payroll isn’t about numbers, it’s about people and human capital. “You need to understand the people you touch. There are amazing people behind the paychecks we are creating,” Davida says. ”Payroll is the bridge between livelihood and life – it’s the lifeblood of the working world. It’s fast-paced, exciting, impactful. It’s sexy!”

And that philosophy means that Davida pushes EP’s payroll team to reach beyond the traditional role and become a partner to the business, bringing full workforce management support. Her team members are prepared to directly address the very real challenges of the ever-changing laws and regulations, especially during this COVID period, and the need to continuously assess, update, and integrate technology solutions. They don’t believe simply referring a client to the legal team is sufficient. Instead, they are ready to articulate the impact of issues like paid family leave, the differences in requirements across state lines in the US and whether someone’s interpretation of the law is correct. Under Davida’s leadership, payroll brings added value to clients in a true spirit of collaboration.

Immediately before joining EP, Davida was Senior Vice President and Head of Global Payroll for The Blackstone Group, and prior to that she was Head of Global HRIS and Payroll at Harman International Industries, directing system strategy and implementation for more than 23 countries. Davida brings a global perspective to her role, with years of payroll experience serving clients with millions of employees. One of her core takeaways from these years was that fundamentally, everyone in payroll speaks one common language: “You do whatever it takes to overcome any challenge to make sure everyone gets their checks on time.”

When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, Davida’s philosophy and passionate sense of urgency led to EP’s successful digitization of the back offices of film and television production. The result was data flowing through an integrated, efficient, paperless process while preserving the military-level security required. Davida and her team managed the quick transition away from the conventional paper-heavy and manual processes and established the strategies to ensure clients felt confident with their support.

Leading through a crisis when it’s even more important that people are paid - and paid on time - is just another day in the life of Davida Lara.

Topic: Spotlight

Related Content

PayTalk: The Recipe for a Successful Payroll 2022 (Part One)

Davida Lara joins the PayTalk podcast to share strategies for leading successful teams
Topic: Payroll
EP Blog_SQUARE_Penka Kouneva-2

Meet the Composer

A conversation with award-winning orchestrator and composer Penka Kouneva (‘Revenge,’ ‘Pirates of the...
Jennifer Liscio

Spotlight: Jennifer Liscio, VP of Legal Affairs and Tax Incentives

Meet EP's Canadian legal affairs and tax incentives domain expert, Jennifer Liscio, and learn how she’s...

Producing with Purpose

Creative Producer, Kimberly Goodman ('Selling Sunset', 'Project Runway') shares insights on creating...
EP Blog_SQUARE_meet the cinematographer-dan-laustsen

Meet the Cinematographer

A conversation with Dan Laustsen ('John Wick', 'Nightmare Alley').
Bradley Cooper-nightmare alley

Meet the Assistant Director

A conversation with Myron Hoffert ('Nightmare Alley')
Anthony De La Rosa-EVP-Residuals

Spotlight: Anthony De La Rosa, Executive Vice President, Residuals

Meet EP’s resident residual domain expert, Anthony De La Rosa, and learn what inspired him to enhance and...
EP Blog_SQUARE-Sound Mixer-Lora Hirschberg

Meet the Sound Mixer

A conversation with Oscar-winning re-recording mixer, Lora Hirschberg ('Inception', Skywalker Sound)
EP Blog_Uncovering Treasures_IndieCollect

Uncovering Lost Treasures of Independent Film

How IndieCollect is preserving Black independent films to reflect a more honest view of America and of...

Meet the Executive Producer

A conversation with Mike Drake ('Just Mercy') on the path to becoming and EP, and the role of social...
Grand Theft Classification Expanded for Wage Payment Violations

Grand Theft Classification Expanded for Wage Payment Violations

The California Legislature has signaled law enforcement agencies to consider the criminal route more...
New York State Makes Retirement Savings Program Mandatory Through Payroll Deduction

New York State Makes Retirement Savings Program Mandatory Through Payroll Deduction

New York state employers that do not offer a qualified retirement plan will soon be required to...

Meet the Editor

‘Chucky’ editors Randy Bricker and Shiran Amir on navigating the entertainment industry and how they...

Payroll & Finances

PayrollResidualsSmartStartNew SmartTimeProduction PortalEP On LocationSmartAccountingEP LiveSmartPOCASHétPayPaymaster Rate GuideEP Residency

Manage Multiple Productions

AssetHubSmartHubSmartHub Vault
Subscribe now

Be an industry insider with EP's
newsletters and alerts

LegalPrivacy NoticeSecurity
© 2022 Entertainment Partners. All rights reserved.