Karaivanova is replacing acting director Kamen Balkanski, who has been running the national institution during the last two years.
She graduated in acting from the National Academy for Theatre and Film Art Кrastio Sarafov in 1984 and started a successful carrier at the Ivan Vazov National Theatre. Up until 1997, when Karaivanova moved to New York, she had already performed 30 theatrical and 15 film roles.
After having collaborated on the shooting of several international coproductions in Bulgaria she continued her studies in film production at the City University of New York and Columbia University.
In 2000 she founded the first Bulgarian Film Festival in New York. Ten years later she launched the Sofia Independent Film Festival, screening American, European and Bulgarian low budget and experimental films in Bulgaria.
In 2016 Karaivonova signed a partnership agreement with the American Independent Filmmaker Project “No Borders” feature film script development platform, wherein the Sofia Independent Film Festival is exclusively collecting Bulgarian applications.
Known for her activities in Bulgarian-American cultural exchanges, Karaivanova promised to implement her experience in the future activities of the Bulgarian National Film Center during her five-year mandate.