2002 FILM FESTIVAL SPECIAL PROGRAMS
It's a She Thing: Female Filmmakers
Looking in the Mirror - What Does It Mean to be Asian and American Today?
BUNGEE JUMPING OF THEIR OWN - Special Presentation on Sunday, October 20th, 2002 at the Lincoln Theatre
For more information on the Reel Affirmations Film Festival, please visit www.reelaffirmations.org.
Faisal Alam is a young queer-identified Muslim of Pakistani descent. He is the founder and director of Al-Fatiha, an international organization dedicated to Muslims who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT). Faisal has been an activist for almost 10 years, first in the mainstream Muslim community, and now in the LGBT movement. He is currently active in LGBT faith-based organizing, human rights work, immigration and asylum rights, and LGBT-youth organizing. Faisal lives in Washington, DC, and works in the field of HIV/AIDS.
Elena Catabu is a half Filipino-Japanese from Hawaii and has been a DC resident since 1996. She graduated from Georgetown with an English and Linguistics double major and an Inter-Arts minor. Elena joined APIQS in July 2002, and has enjoyed meeting new fellow sisters. Her major contribution to the API community is writing poetry and short stories in Hawaiian pidgin about life in Hawaii, and being a local girl living away from Hawaii. Some of her work was recently published in Yell Oh Girls(HarperCollins), an anthology edited by Vickie Nam for and by young Asian women. This fall, her poem, "I Take Not Shit" will appear in the anthology, Hybolics 3,edited by Lee Tonouchi.
Tejpal Chawla has been an associate at Crowell & Moring LLP since 1998, and specializes in government contracts and general litigation. Mr. Chawla is also on the Board of Directors of the Sikh Mediawatch and Resource Taskforce (SMART), a non-profit, non-partisan organization whose mission is to combat prejudice, protect civil rights and religious freedoms, and provide resources to empower the Sikh American community. As part of his work with SMART, Chawla has worked directly with victims of discrimination and has helped construct broad and diverse national coalitions to prevent hate crimes, protect civil liberties and promote diversity. In 2002, Chawla was appointed by D.C. Mayor Anthony Williams as a Commissioner to the D.C. Commission on Asian Pacific Islander Affairs. He also actively works with local and national civic and law enforcement officials on diversity issues and sits on the U.S. Attorney for the District of Columbia's Bias Crime Task Force, and the Metropolitan Police Department's Biased Policing Initiative.
Irwin Gueco is an Architect with Envision in Washington, DC. an architectural firm specializing in "green" architecture. He is currently Project Architect for The National Audubon Society which is now under construction. He has been a member of AQUA for the past 4 years and has also served as Co-Chair of the organization for the past 2 years. Irwin volunteers regularly with the Asian Pacific Islander Partnership for Health (APIPH) in their programming and outreach, in educating the API community in Washington, DC. on HIV/AIDS and prevention.
Terry Hong is the co-Chair of the Smithsonian Institution's Korean American Centennial Celebration, a year-long celebration in 2003 highlighting aspects of Korean American contribution to the larger American fabric. She also writes on the arts, especially theater, books, and film. Publication credits include aMagazine: Inside Asian America (contributing editor/theater and books columnist for 13 years), AsianWeek, KoreAm Journal, American Theatre, Bloomsbury Review, Christian Science Monitor, Dallas Morning News and Curtain Up, among others. She has co-authored two books, Eastern Standard Time: A Guide to Asian Influence on American Culture from Astro Boy to Zen Buddhism and What Do I Read Next? Multicultural Edition. She serves as a nominator for D.C.'s Helen Hayes Awards and is on numerous theater boards. She is also on the board of the National Asian American Telecommunications Association. She holds degrees from Dartmouth College, UC Santa Cruz, and Yale University. She is a frequent speaker, moderator, and lecturer on Asian American issues.
Peter X Feng is an Associate Professor of English and Women's Studies at the University of Delaware, where he teaches film history, Asian American Studies, and cultural studies. An expert on Asian Americans and the media, he has authored Identities in Motion: Asian American Film & Video (Duke University Press), edited Screening Asian Americans (Rutgers University Press), and co-edited a special issue of Journal of Asian American Studies on Asian American cultural production. His articles on Asian Americans in film and popular culture have appeared in Cineaste, Jump Cut, Amerasia Journal, and Cinema Journal, as well as in Countervisions: Asian American Film Criticism (ed. Darrell Hamamoto and Sandra Liu) and Aliens R Us: The Other in Science Fiction (ed. Zia Sardar and Sean Cubitt).
Chan-I Min is an ongoing media student. She graduated from Smith College in 2001 where she served as class president, president of the Asian Students Association, and president of the Lesbian Bisexual Transgender Alliance. She has freelanced for independent film and television crews in the bay area, CA and volunteered as a presenter for the Cinequest Film Festival in San Jose, CA. She is the co-facilitator of the Intra-LGBT Group Dialogue at the University of Maryland College Park.
Avelynn Mitra is a Filipina singer-songwriter who performs for a number of queer APA groups around the country. While a single parent to her seven-year old son, she volunteers for the Asian & Pacific Islander Partnership for Health, serves on the steering committee for the Asian and Pacific Islander Lesbian Bisexual Women and Transgender Network's Activist Institute, and is co-chair of the Asian Pacific Islander Queer Sisters.
David Mori is a trial attorney at the National Labor Relations Board in Washington, D.C. While practicing law in San Diego, he was also active with the San Diego Volunteer Law Project, devoting 150 hours per year, pro bono, assisting indigent clients who had HIV or AIDS with their legal concerns. David joined AQUA in Summer of 2001, and accepted an invitation to join the board when he realized the importance of the group’s purpose to continue to serve queer API men in the DC area. He has also recently co-founded a DC-based social group for gay and bisexual men, called CapitalMEN.
Tina Pamintuan worked for four years at National Public Radio before leaving in 2001 to pursue her own creative projects. "26," her first music video directed by Ben de la Cruz, was screened at the 20th San Francisco International Asian American Film Festival (SFIAAFF) and Ladyfest DC. Current projects include a music video for the song "together" by the band spacepup, which will be featured as a DVD extra on their upcoming album.
Jeanette Roan is an Assistant Professor of English and Film and Media Studies at George Mason University in Fairfax, VA. She received her B.A. in Visual Arts from Brown University and her Ph.D. in Visual and Cultural Studies from the University of Rochester. Her research and teaching interests include topics in the areas of film studies, cultural studies, and Asian American studies, such as the emergence of cinema during the "age of empire," race and ethnicity in U.S. film, cinema and Asian Pacific American culture, and globalization and culture. Her essay Travels to Asia and the Pacific in Early Cinema appears in the anthology Re/collecting Early Asian America: Readings in Cultural History. She is currently working on a book-length manuscript about travel, exoticism, and cinema from high imperialism to global culture tentatively titled Fictions of Faraway Places.
Rodney Salinas serves as Founder and President of the Rainmaker Political Group LLC. Rainmaker is an award-winning provider of content, online magazines, workshops and reports for organizations and individuals who are interested in politics, social issues and government. As the former Executive Director of the Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies (APAICS), he worked to bring national attention to issues facing Asian Pacific Americans and encouraged their involvement and participation in politics and pubic policy. He is a featured weekly political columnist for Manila Bulletin USA and a member of the American Association of Political Consultants. Salinas is currently serving a three-year term on the Human Rights Commission for the city of Alexandria, Virginia.
Lakshmi Singh is WAMU's local All Things Considered host and newscaster. Her award-winning features and reports also air during WAMU's broadcast of Morning Edition and during Metro Connection, WAMU's local news magazine. Outside the station, she's also a regular contributor to NPR's Latino USA and a fill-in anchor for NPR News. Before Lakshmi arrived at WAMU in 1997 as a full-time reporter, she served as a reporter and ATC host at WMFE in Orlando, and also served as a reporter and ATC host at KPBX in Spokane, Washington. Lakshmi has also done freelance work for Voice of America's English to Africa division, and the Christian Science Monitor's now defunct news program, Monitor Radio. Lakshmi is a graduate of Syracuse University, with dual majors in Broadcast Journalism and Latin American Studies. Her hobbies: Salsa dancing, biking and sitting at a coffee shop with down-to-earth friends, talking about everything under the sun.
Vivian Umino is the writer and director of "Captured" and is a Visiting Assistant Professor at the Department of Film and Television at UCLA. She is one of 16 national winners of the 2001 ABC New Talent Development Scholarship-Grant Program for her screenplay of the feature film "The Master Painter" as well as a recipient of the 1999 James Bridges Award in Film Directing and the Women in Film/Paramount Studios Fellowship Award. In addition to "Captured," she has written and directed several short films, including "Ill Repair" (1998). She is currently editing a documentary on stage director Peter Sellars. She received a BA in English and Theater Studies at Yale University and an MFA in Film Directing at UCLA.
S. Casper Wong is the director of the short film "Shirts and Skins." She grew up in New York City and, after a surprisingly rewarding legal career in Silicon Valley, returned to study film at NYU and to pursue other new discoveries. She is currently working on her first feature, "Babyface."