Most of you probably know about D.W. Griffith’s horrible 1915 film, The Birth of a Nation. It glorified the Ku Klux Klan. President Woodrow Wilson, a virulent racist, showed it in the White House.
Last month, we made our first grants of 2016. We added six new families and individuals to the RFC community and awarded more than $190,000 overall to both new and existing beneficiaries. This brings our total granted since our founding to over $6 million!
Our new recipients include:
In our spring newsletter we announced that Gina Belafonte is the latest addition to our Advisory Board. This group is comprised of artists, activists, public intellectuals, and others with valuable skills or expertise, who publicly endorse our work and take other actions to support us in special ways. Gina – an actor/director/producer and activist – co-directs Sankofa.org, the organization her father Harry started to encourage artists to use their visibility to further movements for social justice. Harry Belafonte also has been on our Advisory Board since 2003.
Many prominent individuals have been part of this group over the years, including in memoriam members Pete & Toshi Seeger, Studs Terkel, Adrienne Rich, Ossie Davis, Ronnie Gilbert, and Richie Havens. Well-known present members include Angela Davis, Susan Sarandon, Chuck D, Eve Ensler, Holly Near, Ed Asner, and Mandy Patinkin, among others.
But whether or not they’re household names, all members of the RFC’s Advisory Board have powerful credentials and do exciting work in different realms. Here are short profiles of several of them.
It might be hard to imagine a music video that shows a young father singing about love and hopes for his toddler son, behind scenes of the family changing diapers, break dancing, and marching with the baby at a protest against the School of Americas torture training camp in Georgia.