2018 Peacemakers’ Panel Discussion (80 min)
Sunday March 11th, 2018 approx. 1:44 pm
Ken Butigan, Moderator
Ken Butigan is an educator, writer and advocate for nonviolent change. For three decades he has organized or participated in numerous movements for social transformation, including movements for a nuclear-free future, an end to homelessness, and freedom for East Timor. From 1987 to 1990, he was the national coordinator of the Pledge of Resistance, a network of 100,000 people in 400 local groups that organized coordinated nonviolent action for peace in Central America.
Since retiring in 2013 from a career in public service as a lawyer for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Barbara has devoted her time to volunteer work; a leadership role in a grassroots political organization devoted to electing Democrats locally, statewide, and nationally; and international travel. The opportunity to visit Israel and the West Bank in 2016 on a “dual narrative” tour organized by Rabbi Dov Taylor was irresistible, and the experience was moving.
Buck Blodgett is the founder of The LOVE hate Project which was created in honor of his late daughter, Jessie. The purpose of LOVE hate is to spread love and forgiveness and eradicate male on female violence from our planet. Dr Blodgett is chiropractor who lives in Harford, WI, with his wife and soul mate, Joy. inspiring, and deeply disturbing in equal measure.
Hassan El Tayyab
Hassan El Tayyab is the Policy and Organizing Director of Chicago Area Peace Action (CAPA); an affiliate (1978) of Peace Action the largest and oldest peace advocacy group in America, since 1957. CAPA works to reduce and eliminate the danger of nuclear weapons and runaway militarism, promote peace and reject warfare, and embrace a world free of the devastation of climate change. Hassan is also front man of the band American Nomad and an award winning singer songwriter. He was honored as a finalist in the 2017 Telluride Troubadour Song Competition, for best vocal performance in the 2013 Berkeley Old Time Music Competition, and as a finalist in the 2011 International songwriting.
Born in Tehran, Iran, Iraj started his political activities when he was 17 years old. In 1979, Iraj was studying in the US, there a member of “Iranian Confederation of Students” when the Iranian revolution broke out. Iraj rushed back to Iran and actively participated in the revolution, an joined the “Mujahedin Khalgh”, he was arrested by the new Islamic regime in 1980; and spent ten years in various prisons; after his release because of constant surveillance and harassment by the Islamic authorities he fled Iran with his wife, who had spent 5 years in prison, and their new-born son, and resettled in Sweden where Iraj resumed his political activities, bringing the atrocities of the Islamic Republic to the attention of International Human Rights organizations.
Erik L. Jennings Simões
Erik L. Jennings Simões is a neurosurgeon who works deep in the Amazon rainforest. He was the founder of the first public service of neurosurgery in the interior of the Brazilian Amazon. For over 18 years, has been operated on patients with specific neurological diseases contracted in the forest, and he divides his time between the neurological service of the municipal hospital of the city of Santarém and a small hospital in the middle of the forest. Dr Simões is an environmental activist and defender of the rights and culture of indigenous peoples; currently a consultant to the Ministry of Health for health matters involving isolated indigenous peoples of recent contact, it is here he advocates for cultural, environmental and social preservation as the major provider of health care for these peoples.
In 2009, Noah Schultz was arrested for attempted murder sentenced and incarcerated for seven years. Noah pushed to better himself and to challenge our perceptions of what it means to be an inmate, Noah took advantage of every program, workshop and educational service provided. From gang member and drug dealer, to college grad, author, and TEDx speaker, Noah’s determination and spirit have launched him to success; and he continues to advocate for programs in youth correctional facilities, in hopes to achieve reform of our prison systems nation’s widespread.
2018 Filmmakers’ Panel Discussion (80 min)
Saturday March 10th, 2018 approx. 1:10 pm
Milos Stehlik, Moderator
Milos Stehlik was born in Slaný, central Bohemia, immigrated to the US, via Australia with his mother in 1962, and soon after joining his father and a family move to Chicago. It was in his 20s that he became interested in film. At the time he owned a shop called Action Bookstore, where he occasionally showed films to link in with literary events. After a while, he took his film programming to a nearby theatre called The Drama Shelter, where he met his future business partner, Nicole Dreiske, with whom he founded Facets.
Delnaz Abadi, Director, The Secret Fatwa (Feature Documentary, USA, 55 min)
‘The Secret Fatwa’ uncovers a crime unknown to the world and unique in the history of state crimes. In 1988 the Islamic Republic of Iran in a modern day medieval inquisition and religious purging, sent to death 4,000 political prisoners. Filmmaker, Delnaz Abadi, reaches out to former political prisoners who had fled Iran to uncover this horrific story.
Mandar Apte, Director, From India With Love (Short Documentary, USA/India, 45 min)
Six Americans from varied backgrounds — a single mother whose son was murdered in a tragic school shooting (from Sandy Hook) and her friend (from Atlanta), an ex-gang leader (from Los Angeles), an educator (from Newark), and two advocates of the Movement for Black Lives (Oakland) — who have all experienced violence come together for a shared experience of healing and transformation during a 10-day pilgrimage to India, following the intention behind Rev. Martin Luther King, nearly sixty years ago. What will they discover in India that can help reinvigorate nonviolence in America today?
Patty L Collins, Director, Ancestors We Hear You (Short Documentary, USA, 24 min)
If our planet and all living beings are to survive, we must transform our thoughts and behavior, and live in reciprocity with one another, and all creation. We can change the current paradigm of power and control over people, land, water, and religion. We can restore and mend our relationship with one another and all creation. Spiritual tribal elders. Ancestor Thomas Banyacya (Hopi), Jorge Luis Delgado (Inca), Richard Moves Camp (Lakota), Rosanna Kagenveama (Hopi), and Leon Rattler (Blackfeet), remind us all that our thoughts, prayers, and behavior affect all creation.
Marcos Colon, Director, Beyond Fordlandia (Feature Documentary, Brazil, 75 min)
An environmental account ninety years after Henry Ford and the Ford Motor Companys’ attempt to establish rubber plantations on the Tapajós River, a primary tributary of the Amazon. The film further addresses the recent transition from failed rubber to successful soybean cultivation for export, and its implication for land usage, the impact on the Amazon and its people, and the insidious actions of corporations in defiance of court orders.
Kern Konwiser, Director, Make It Work: The Launch (Short Documentary, USA/Ecuador, 30 min)
A neurobiology PhD student seeks to fulfill a childhood dream of bringing state of the art prosthetics to the third world. Made from parts costing less than $50, his robotic hand is indestructible and delivers sensory feedback to the wearer that doesn’t exist in even the most expensive commercial devices. Now he’s ready to take it out of the lab and into the world on “patient #1”, a Muslim spiritual leader thousands of miles away in Ecuador.
Julie Mallozzi, Director, Circle Up (Feature Documentary, USA, 69 min)
After the brutal slaying of her teenage son, Janet Connors reaches out to her son’s killer to offer a chance for forgiveness. They team up with a group of mothers of murdered children to help young people in their community break the chain of violence and revenge. “If I look at them as monsters I let them off the hook.” [However], “if I look at them in humanity, then I hold them accountable.” J. Connors.
Anthony Pellino, Director, Sullivan (Short Documentary, USA, 6 min)
Chicago’s Rogers Park is a neighborhood that is home to thousands of refugees, asylum-seekers and immigrants, and Sullivan HS. The school’s boys soccer team reflects that diversity, fusing players from all over the world into a cohesive team.
Greg Sucharew, Director, The Bicycle City (Feature Documentary, USA/Nicaragua, 61 min)
The transformation of a war torn community with the simple implementation of ‘the bicycle’. After his Peace Corps stint in Ecuador, where only his landlord had a bicycle, David Schweidenback had the bright idea to send used American bicycles to developing world towns as economic development aid. Nicaraguan city of Rivas was the first city to begin receiving used bikes in 1991, and where, with local help, the program has been proven a success, and we see how the bicycle has impacted this developing world town.