About

MISSION + VISION
We are building a global community of storytellers to explore human possibility. We aim to educate, incubate, and inspire change makers through stories that voice the ability to adapt, innovate, and prosper.
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BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Alice Ackermann
Director, Development

Alice Ackermann is senior advisor and affiliate at the Herbert C. Kelman Institute for Conflict Transformation (Vienna). She has served at the United Nations mission in Mogadishu/Somalia and at the Vienna-based Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), in addition to holding positions as consultant,  professor and university administrator in the United States, Europe and Central Asia.

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Sanjeev Chatterjee
President/Founder

Sanjeev Chatterjee is a professor, visual storyteller and mentor to numerous media makers. His award-winning documentary work has been seen internationally on National Geographic, Discovery, The History Channel, PBS, ARTE, CCTV (China) and Doordarshan (India) among others. Sanjeev received the Fulbright-Nehru scholarship twice (2011 and 2018). 

He is a Fellow of the Salzburg Global Seminar. He is a tenured professor at the School of Communication, University of Miami where he teaches filmmaking and journalism.
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Donna Coker
Secretary and Director, Reimagining the Movement to End Gender Violence

Donna Coker is engaged in reimagining the ways we think about "gender violence."   She advocates for moving away from focusing on criminal system responses, to instead a focus on changing the structural inequalities that maintain violence.   Her research documents the negative impact that crime-centered policies have on those who are marginalized as a function of poverty, race, immigration status, sexual orientation, and gender identity.

She is a leading researcher in the use of restorative justice responses to intimate partner violence and sexual harm.  She is also engaged in work to end mass incarceration and to respond to violence perpetrated by criminal legal system actors. She is a law professor at the University of Miami.  She has more than 30 years of activism and scholarship in ending gender violence.Donna holds an MSW from the University of Arkansas at Little Rock and a J.D. from Stanford University School of Law. She was named a Dean's Distinguished Scholar in 2019.
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Nina Mukerjee Furstenau
Director, Food Project

Nina Mukerjee Furstenau is a journalist, author and editor of the Food Story book series for the University of Iowa Press. She has penned award-winning books, articles and essays focused on food identity and history, and received a Fulbright-Nehru research grant in 2018-19. 

Nina served in the U.S. Peace Corps (1984-86) and was one of its delegates for the U.N. World Conference on Women in Nairobi, Kenya. She was director of Food Systems Communication for the University of Missouri's Science and Agricultural Journalism program (2010-2018) and completed food/nutrition projects in Ghana and Mozambique for U.S. AID and the McKnight Foundation.
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Kim Grinfeder
Director, Online Initiatives

Kim Grinfeder Is the Director of the Interactive Media Program at the University of Miami. Kim likes to take complex ideas and distill them into clear messaging and visual concepts. His production skill set wavers between design, film, and code with a strong focus on user experience.

As an entrepreneur, Kim has successfully established and sold two companies. He joined the faculty at the School of Communication in 2003 and holds a Master’s degree in Interactive Telecommunications from New York University and a Bachelor of Arts in History from the University of Miami. His work often explores new media tech across the spectrum including immersive storytelling, interactive installations, UI Design, branching narratives & emerging communication technologies. His current research and creative work interests are in producing 360º films, immersive storytelling, and non-linear narratives.
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Mohit Gulati
Director, Education Initiatives

Mohit Gulati is an independent filmmaker who explores avenues to use new age media to bridge the gap between alternative narratives and encourage dialogue to foster communities. Mohit has worked on various documentary projects, brand films, social impact studies, and fiction short films. 

Mohit launched Paridrishya in 2017 as an initiative to democratize storytelling in rural India. Mohit is a Young India Fellow and Alumnus of NIT Jalandhar and MICA. He founded Xooplabs, a content production studio in 2018.
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Gonzalo Mejia
Director, Organizational Administration

Gonzalo Mejia, originally from Ecuador, is a filmmaker with an extensive list of credits which include Documentaries, Films, and Web Content.  He is also an entrepreneur, having founded Bananas Films in 2004 in which they have produced media content for top brands around the world.

Currently, Gonzalo lives in Miami and works as the Director of Media of Production Services for the Frost School of Music at the University of  Miami. He has also been involved with Media for Change since 2016, in which he shares all his knowledge and experience to promote well-crafted media worldwide.
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Chad Tingle
Director, Incubations

Chad Tingle is a Miami-based filmmaker and director with screening credits at SXSW, Aspen Shortsfest, The Miami International Film Festival, Maryland Film Festival, and the Cleveland Film Festival. His commercial directing includes spots for Anthemâ’s Simply Healthcare, Oakley lifestyle campaigns, Resorts World Casinos, and Broward Health, one of the 10th largest health systems in the U.S.

 

Chad's began his career creating documentaries on Miami's social and cultural issues such as race-based gentrification, African-American church customs, and the soul music scene of the 1960s.
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Sumita Chatterjee
Director, Research
Sumita Chatterjee is a historian specialising in modern India and the English Caribbean, with focus on women’s work, and the role of gender, caste, race, and religious identities in the South Asian diaspora. She has a M. A. and M.Phil. in Modern Indian History from Jawaharlal Nehru University, and a Ph.D. from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She has published in the journal Himal – South Asia, an edited anthology, Empire and Community: South Asians in Diaspora, and co-authored with Arva Parks and Kathleen O’Connor, Florida’s Third District Court Of Appeals: Balancing Justice.
She currently holds a dual appointment as lecturer in the Department of History and Gender and Sexuality Studies Program at the University of Miami. She was the University of Miami’s Engaged Faculty Fellow in 2015-16. She continues to work with community organizations in Miami-Dade county such as Refugee Assistance Alliance and City Year Miami. She has received the Mellon CREATE grant to archive stories of South Asian immigrants in South Florida for the year 2020-2021. Sumita enjoys teaching, research, and civic engagement in her local community.
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ADVISORS

Lucy Lehman
Agent Provocateur

Lucy Lehman graduated from the University of Wisconsin (BS ART, 1963) and later worked at the Art Institute of Chicago in the Department of Oriental Art. 

She had a successful career in wholesale sterling silver jewelry business. Ms. Lehman is a noted philanthropist who has raised funds for arts organizations and well as healthcare organizations focused on access and equity. With her son Peter, Ms. Lehman is the founder of Race Fans for Change, dedicated to helping motor race fans on political issues.
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Paul Mihailidis
Associate Professor, Emerson College and Director, Salzburg Academy on Media and Global Change

Paul Mihailidis is Associate Professor and Graduate Program Director of Media Design at Emerson College, Boston. His work straddles the fields of media literacy, civic and community engagement and activism. 

Paul serves as the Director of Salzburg Academy on Media and Global Change. His recent books, Civic Media Literacies (Routledge), Civic Media: Technology, Design, Practice (w/ Eric Gordon, MIT Press) and Media Literacy and the Emerging Citizen: Youth, Engagement and Participation in Digital Culture(Peter Lang) explore the ways in which citizens use media to meaningful participate in civic life in the digital age.
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Rick Ray
Investor and Media Entrepreneur

Rick Ray graduated from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and grew up in television . He as Chief Executive Officer and his wife, Dee as President started Raycom Inc. in 1979 and led a trend in televising college athletics on a broader basis. They have 4 children.

Rick and Dee have a history of service in their communities ,with several Universities and NGOs

1995- RAYCOM was regularly producing over 600 events, major bowl games and golf tournaments and basketball events, produced / sold college basketball for ABC network and the CollegeFootball championship / merged with a group of 13 television stations. 1998- RAYCOM was sold to RSA 2002-2003  investor/ member of the board of Action Performance, 2008- present  investor and consultant for Woodfield Partners 2010 -present  Operating partner in Palo Alto based Virgo Investment Group. 2011 -2012 Chief Executive Officer of “Nightly Business Report”, an award- winning  business news program selected as one of 4 best programs of the year on PBS stations sold to CNBC. 2018 – present Advisor to the Board / Board Member of Bitcentral the largest  supplier of television news production software and hardware in the US.
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Gyan Sinha
Finance Professional
Gyan Sinha is a Portfolio Manager at Linden Advisors, LP. Gyan has over 25 years of experience in researching, trading, structuring and managing securitized products. Gyan joined Linden from Godolphin Capital Management (a data-science focused private credit fund) where he was the CIO. Prior to Godolphin, he was a Partner/Portfolio manager at KLS Diversified Asset Management and a member of KLS’ Investment Committee. At KLS, he co-managed and supervised the day-to-day workings of the Structured Product group.
Gyan headed the Global Structured Credit Research group at Bear Stearns, which was well known for its groundbreaking ABS/MBS prepayment and credit analysis and its cash CDO research. Over the past decade, he was consistently one of the top-ranked analysts in Institutional Investor’s (II) All-America Fixed Income Research survey for his work in asset-backed securities, notably in prepayments, ARMs and CDOs. For 7 years, his work on ABS prepayments garnered him the first rank in the annual II polls. His work on CDOs has also been recognized as worthy of the top spot for 2 years in a row during this period. Gyan joined Bear Stearns in 1996 and was with the firm for almost 12 years. Prior to joining Bear Stearns, he was a Vice President at CS First Boston in the Mortgage Research area. He started his career on Wall Street at Donaldson, Lufkin and Jenrette (DLJ) where he focused on, among other things, some of the earliest sub-prime transactions in the mortgage market. Prior to his Wall Street experience, Gyan was an Assistant Professor in the faculty of commerce at the University of British Columbia from 1991 to 1993. Mr. Sinha earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics in 1985 from Delhi University and a Ph.D in Economics from Syracuse University in 1991.
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Michael Smolens
Founder dotSUB, Entrepreneur

For the first 32 years of his career, he started 8 garment manufacturing companies creating more than 20,000 jobs supporting the livelihood of over 100,000 people in Haiti, Mexico, Hungary, Romania, Turkey, Pakistan, India, Egypt, Jordan, Russia and Azerbaijan. During this time, he developed a deep and profound awareness of differences in the world's cultures, with the role language played enabling cross-cultural communication as well as economic development.

 

He conceived Dotsub in 2004, before YouTube & smartphones, and launched it in 2007 – becoming the first browser based platform to enable video, created in any language, to be easily, quickly and inexpensively available in any other language, and then viewable on any video enabled device or platform, including mobile. As video storytelling becomes the dominant way to communicate, inspire, educate & train - knowing that only 6% of the 7.6B people in the world speak English as a native language, with 19% more speaking it as a 2nd or 3rd language, that means 75% speak no English.  It is Dotsub’s mission to enable all of the world’s knowledge, available in video, be available in all languages and viewed by all 7.6B people in the world in their native language, on any of their existing devices, even including feature phones.  Dotsub’s clients include IBM, Apple, Microsoft, AirBnB, Spotify, CME, Netflix and hundreds of SME’s.
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Karin Gwinn Wilkins
Dean, School of Communication, University of Miami

Karin Wilkins is Dean of the School of Communication at the University of Miami. Before coming to UM in September, 2019 she was Associate Dean for Faculty Advancement and Strategic Initiatives with the Moody College of Communication at the University of Texas at Austin.

While at UT. Austin, she also held the John T. Jones Jr. Centennial Professorship in Communication and the John P. McGovern Regents Professorship in Health and Medical Science Communication. She was awarded the Cale McDowell Award for Innovation in Undergraduate Studies, for creating a certificate in global studies, programs in Middle East studies, and a degree in Communication and Leadership. Wilkins is also the Editor-in-Chief of Communication Theory. She has won numerous awards for her research, service and teaching, and chaired the Intercultural/Development Division of the International Communication Association. Her work addresses scholarship in the fields of development communication, global communication, and political engagement. She holds a Ph.D. and a Master in Communication from the University of Pennsylvania and a B.A., in Interdisciplinary Studies from Bucknell University.
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INTERNATIONAL ADVISORS

Gautam Bose
Documentary Filmmaker, India

Gautam Bose has been making documentaries for 30 years. Also as a development communication professional, Gautam has used film to help people from diverse backgrounds communicate effectively with one another.

Gautam’s creative output has ranged from biotechnology-learning videos for the farmers, to critical social documentaries on women, migration and mental health. His audience is equally varied —his work has been screened along the coastal villages of Kerala, in National Geographic channel as well as at the UN. Gautam made nearly 5000 learning videos on products, services and processes, shot a dozen of shorts for National Geographic Channels and shot and directed dozens of documentaries for various TV channels, NGOs across the world. In early 80’s Gautam got his first professional training in CENDIT (Centre for Development of Instructional Technology) Delhi.
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Karen Fowler-Watt

Karen Fowler-Watt is a senior principal academic at Bournemouth University in the UK. A former senior BBC journalist, she is interested in storytelling, authorial voice, questions of ethics and reporting conflict and trauma.

Her current projects are focused on re-imagining journalism education - she is co-editor (with Stephen Jukes) of the forthcoming publication 'New Journalisms: Rethinking practice, theory and pedagogy' (Routledge, 2019). She is also working on a pedagogic project on marginalised voices with Dutch non-profit Global Voices and recently ran workshops on fake news and trust for a research project funded by the US Embassy in London. Karen seeks to build connections between industry and the academy through her role as research theme lead for journalism education in Bournemouth University's Centre for Excellence in Media Practice. She has an M.A. in History from the University of Cambridge, a doctorate from University of Southampton and was a Harkness Fellow at Harvard.
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Ana Laura Gamboggi Taddei
University Professor, São Paulo, Brazil

Ana Laura Gamboggi’s work with institutions and organizations around the world on environmental research projects add perspective to mediaforchange.org’s educational and research policies. 

She is a published author and currently teaches at SENAC University, Brazil.
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Girish Muzumdar
Multimedia Scholar. France

Girish Muzumdar’s research focuses on developing a model of care and support that favors social inclusion and allows persons with intellectual disabilities to lead the lives of their choice, expressed through the narrative function. He is an associate member of Projekt, a design lab at the University of Nimes, France.

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Chandra Shekhar Sinha
Adviser, Climate Change Group, World Bank

Chandra Shekhar Sinha  joined the World Bank in 1997 and was part of the team which established carbon finance at the World Bank.Mr. Sinha has held various positions at the World Bank, including the Lead Financial Specialist for the Energy Group of the Latin America and the Caribbean, Team Leader for Operations for the Carbon Finance Business and the Fund Manager for the €970 million Umbrella Carbon Facility.

Mr. Sinha was the Head for Environmental Markets in Asia for JP Morgan Chase from February 2008 to March 2010 during which time he set up and managed the carbon finance business for the firm in Asia. Between 1989-96, Mr. Sinha worked on rural energy, renewable energy and climate change at the TERI (New Delhi). He was a Fellow at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University from 1993-95. Mr. Sinha has a Ph.D. and M.Tech. in Energy Studies from the IIT, Delhi and a Masters degree in Physics from the IIT, Kanpur.
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CONTRIBUTORS

Isabella Vaccaro
Writer
Isabella Vaccaro is a rising senior at the University of Miami studying journalism and minoring in Theatre Arts and Spanish. She is a Foote Fellow, as well as a member of the Honors Communication Program and the Alpha Epsilon Rho Electronic Media Honor Society. This year, Isabella served as Editor-in-Chief of UM’s student-run lifestyle magazine, Distraction. A creative at heart, she has also been seen in two productions at UM’s Jerry Herman Ring Theatre. Storytelling is her greatest passion.
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Tong Wu
Web and Video
Tong Wu is a Chinese artist and creative technologist who grew up on the internet. As a photojournalist-turned artist and a recent grad of the Interactive Telecommunications Program at New York University, her practice focuses on exploring the dynamic power game and its social influence the Internet users, are constantly developing with ourselves, within the community, and with a social system of control that is heavily intervened by machine.
Obsessed with the idea of the internet being constantly "gazing" and intricately "connected", Tong's research focuses on social topics including mass surveillance, identity crisis, human alienation and internet culture studies. As an artist, Tong creates illustrations, mixed reality sculptures, and interactive installations with unique visual aesthetics that usually redefine and reconstruct the human body. As a creative technologist, she focuses on developing open-source software that helps to democratize the access to digital tools for artists and educators, especially those from areas lack of telecommunication resources.
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Dattatreya Ghosh
Designer
Dattatreya Ghosh has high academic aspirations, however he is an artist and designer at heart. He is currently pursuing his Ph. D from the Department of Film Studies, Jadavpur University, India. He did his undergraduate from the Department of Comparative Literature, Jadavpur University and his postgraduate from the Department of Film Studies, Jadavpur University. Dattatreya is particularly interested in the film culture of Bengal.
He is also working as a Research Fellow in The Media Lab, Jadavpur University, in a project titled 'Cinema in Bengal (1920 - 2000) where he is engaged with archiving and digitising film magazines and other film related materials. His current research interests are in the field of visual culture and new media. Academically, he is also intrigued by literary theory and the politics of the Indian culture and society at large. He is fond of graphic designing and photography, and also takes special interest in food and culinary practices. He has worked as a volunteer for the science communication and popularization movement in West Bengal. He plans to travel through the entire country some day.
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Krista Ray
Grantwriter
Krista Ray is a writer and artist living in Arizona. With a background in film and theatre, she has worked raising money for Broadway productions with OHenry Productions, produced short films and been involved on the production team of feature films, and produced short-form video content for Mashable and TheStreet.
She now works combining skills from graphic recording and facilitation, comic-making, and storytelling to produce work that challenges societal norms, incorporating themes of mental health awareness, gender and LGBT issues, among others. She has a love of languages and completed a two-year program on the Spanish language in Vitoria, Spain, has completed coursework in graphic recording in Cologne, Germany, and recently received a certificate in grant proposal writing from ASU as she works to transition into doing more work in the nonprofit sector.
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