|Directors' Statement||Full Synopsis||The Crew||Featured Experts||Advisory Board|
Members of our advisory board provide guidance and support to maximize the impact of HEIST: Who Stole the American Dream? around the country.
Harry Brill earned a doctorate in sociology at UC Berkeley in 1989 and his book, Why Organizers Fail, was published by the University of California Press. He has written many articles on social and labor issues, and was a faculty member in Sociology at the University of Massachusetts, Berkeley campus for many decades. Harry is also a long time organizer, playing a major role in winning full-time health benefits for part-time faculty members UMass, Boston. He has been been successful in other organizing drives, including winning major housing concessions as a condition for allowing the redevelopment of Yerba Buena in downtown San Francisco, and was also a lead organizer in winning a ten month strike at a car dealer, which won among other things achieved a defined benefit pension plan.
Jed Riffe is an award-winning independent filmmaker who has been producing prime time, national and international programming for theatrical release and public television since 1992. Most recently he served as series producer on “California and the American Dream,” an independently produced four-hour, nationally broadcast PBS series. Riffe’s feature length, documentary film “Waiting to Inhale: Marijuana, Medicine and the Law” has been screened and broadcast over 145 times on four continents garnering five “Best Documentary” awards including a CINE Golden Eagle. Riffe is currently completing “Germ Wars,” a documentary on food safety, bacteria and the immune system. Over the last 20 years, Riffe has produced and directed a number of acclaimed nationally broadcast documentaries and news programs including: “California’s ‘Lost’ Tribes,” “Ripe for Change,” “Ishi, the Last Yahi,” “Who Owns the Past?” and “The Kennewick Man” among others. Riffe’s films have won 26 major awards. He is honored to be both a 2009 Sundance Documentary Film Program Fellow and a Gerbode Fellow.
Robin Chin is an award-winning documentary filmmaker, video editor, archivist and researcher. She produced, directed and co-edited the award-winning film "There's Something About W," a documentary for the 2004 Presidential election. The film features Nobel Prize-winning economist, Paul Krugman of The New York Times, late, great journalist Molly Ivins, Pulitzer Prize-winning economist David Cay Johnston, Michael Moore, Bill Maher, Al Franken, Daniel Ellsberg and many more. David Talbot of Salon called it "a damning point-by-point critique of the havoc wreaked by the Bush Administration … a useful tool of political persuasion for the swing voter." Robin's film editing credits include documentaries for Frontline, Frontline/World, Bill Moyers and PBS. As an archivist, Robin has created a video archive of over 20,000 hours of broadcast news, current affairs, government affairs, public policy discussions and humor programs documenting the world's historical changes from 2000 to the present.
Harvey Smith is project advisor to California’s Living New Deal Project and board president of the National New Deal Preservation Association. He was co-curator of the 2010 exhibit “The American Scene: New Deal Art, 1935-1943.” He received a B.A. in English and master of public health degree from U.C. Berkeley and has worked as a carpenter, public health worker and researcher, radio journalist, horse rancher and educator.
Susan C. Strong, Ph.D., founded the Metaphor Project in 1997, to assist progressives and liberals in mainstreaming their messages by framing them as part of the ideal American story. She holds a Ph.D. in comparative literature and taught communication about contemporary issues at UC Berkeley and St. Mary's College until 1985. Since then, Susan has focused on being an activist leader, non-profit staff writer, and columnist about issues of peace, environment, and ecological sustainability. She is a former Senior Research Associate at the Center for Economic Conversion (Mountain View) and a former Peace Action National Board member, representing California. She also served as National Peace Action Strategy Co-Chair and was a co-founder of the original Peace Action Peace Economy Campaign. She was a co-founder of The "Who's Counting?" Project as well. Her writing has been published on OpEdNews, Alternet, Common Dreams, in The Christian Science Monitor, The Boston Review, The San Francisco Chronicle and many other online and print news publications and blogs.
Mike Parker is a long time labor and community activist. He is on the national Policy Committee of Labor Notes a network of activists committed to rebuilding the labor movement. He has worked with them for more than 30 years and has written numerous articles and books on labor related questions including Democracy is Power: Rebuilding Unions from the Bottom UP, and Working Smart: A Union Guide to Participation Programs and Reorganization (see www.labornotes.org). He is also a leader of the Richmond Progressive Alliance, a community organization in Richmond California which has defeated corporate power in Richmond California in the last three elections (see www.richmondprogressivealliance.net).
Mike Prokosch works at Community Labor United in Boston and helps coordinate the New Priorities Network, a nationwide project to create jobs and save services by cutting military spending. He has worked as a typesetter, graphic designer, film critic, newspaper editor and reporter, and economics educator. From 1986 through 1998 he was the New England director for CISPES, the Committee in Solidarity with the People of El Salvador; from 1999 through 2004 he coordinated the global economy program at United for a Fair Economy; and from 2004 through 2008 he worked at the UMass Lowell Labor Extension Program.
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