DIRECTOR/PRODUCER – OLIVIA KLAUS
Ms. Klaus’ career began with extensive travel throughout Central America and South America, gathering stock footage and interviews for various non-profit organizations that serve social justice issues in poverty-stricken areas of these regions. Her work continued in various roles in production and has been seen on various networks like CNN, HLN, Showtime, and The History Channel. She was recently listed by Pixel Project as one of the top 16 influential leaders in the movement to end violence against women.
Olivia founded Quiet Little Place Productions, an independent production company devoted to producing innovative and socially relevant stories for the screen and the web. In 2009, Olivia directed and produced Sin by Silence as the company’s first documentary endeavor. This film, about the first inmate led battered women’s group in the US prison system, went on to win numerous film festival and advocacy awards, as well as be featured in People Magazine and CNN. The Stop the Violence campaign, created to enhance the film’s movement and impact, was a catalyst that significantly furthered the fight against domestic violence through a national community tour and innovative online initiative. Sin by Silence is distributed by Women Make Movies and continues to be an essential educational resource on domestic violence that is utilized across the world in classrooms, training agencies and non-profits.
Olivia also serves as an Adjunct Professor in the Cinema and Digital Media department at Vanguard University of Southern California, her own alma mater, where she received numerous awards for her undergrad work. Her teaching specializations include high-definition and digital production. She was a resident at the Working Films and Fledgling Fund Grantee Residency and has been a guest speaker at Stanford University, UC Berkeley, USC, ASU, and various national conferences.
FOUNDER OF CONVICTED WOMEN AGAINST ABUSE - BRENDA CLUBINE
In 1983, Brenda Clubine received a sentence of 15 years to life and thought she was the only one in her situation. But, she soon discovered that she shared common experiences of love turning violent with many of her fellow inmates. Brenda’s revelation inspired the support group Convicted Women Against Abuse (CWAA), the first of its kind in the entire US prison system, to help women inside prison break the silence about abuse and learn more about what they needed to do to help others stop the cycle of violence.
In the early 1990s, Brenda and the CWAA women played an active role in a statewide effort to gain clemency for battered women in prison. In 1992, Battered Women’s Syndrome had just become legally defined to recognize the psychological condition that describes someone who has been the victim of consistent and/or severe domestic violence. This defense became widely used in the cases of battered women who kill because it helps explain to a jury the possibilities that might lead to their crime. Yet, there was cause for protest from the women of CWAA since the majority were convicted prior to the availability of the Battered Women’s Syndrome defense being given its proper weight in court. The women of CWAA took a stand for what could be their improper convictions since battered women who kill would now be receiving, on average, a 6 to 8 year sentence of involuntary manslaughter.
In October 2008, Brenda Clubine became the 20th CWAA member to be released from prison and can now continue her advocacy efforts on behalf of domestic violence survivors beyond prison walls.
CONSULTANT/RESEARCH – DR. ELIZABETH LEONARD
Dr. Elizabeth Dermody Leonard is a Professor of Sociology at Vanguard University where her course offerings include Family Violence, Criminology, and Sociology. She received her Ph.D. in 1997 from the University of California, Riverside. Her book, Convicted Survivors: The Imprisonment of Battered Women Who Kill, is being used by legislators, law professors, and advocates for convicted battered women. She has testified about her research before a state legislative hearing on women prisoners.
SPOKESPERSON/CONSULTANT – DENISE BROWN
Denise Brown led a life remarkable only in its normalcy 1994 when her sister, Nicole Brown Simpson, was murdered. Today, she is one of the leading advocates in the domestic violence movement.
Since early 1995, Denise Brown has traveled to various states speaking on the epidemic of domestic violence. She has addressed university student bodies, men in prison, batterers' treatment programs, women at risk, church groups and various educational and legislative forums. Ms. Brown has worked to help pass a variety of legislative solutions for domestic violence. One of her most important projects was to lobby on behalf of the Violence Against Women Act. With a potential reduction of federal allocation to domestic violence services, Denise Brown testified to the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee for increased funding for the Violence Against Women Act. After her testimony, that portion of the bill's funding was increased from eighteen million to thirty-two million dollars.
Denise Brown has made a life-long commitment to educate the public as well as improve the quality of living for women and children who have been victims of domestic violence, She is determined to banish the darkness and end the silence.
EXECUTIVE PRODUCER – MARKER KARAHADIAN
After working in the motion picture industry as freelance crew for 10 years, Marker saw the potential of electronic cinematography and purchased the company's first video camera in 1981. He then started Plus 8 Digital, which became one of the most extensive inventories of digital motion picture equipment for rent worldwide. Plus 8 supplied the 4:4:4 recording technology for “Star Wars Episode III”, as well as, “Collateral”, “Domino”, and “Miami Vice.” Marker has also produced several television and PBS specials, including “Caesar’s Writers” and “M*A*S*H, Tootsie & God: A Tribute to Larry Gelbart.”
In 2006, Marker joined the Panavision organization as Executive Vice President.
CO-PRODUCER/EDITOR – ANN-CARYN CLEVELAND
Ann-Caryn Cleveland is currently the head of the Cinema-Digital Media Department at Vanguard University. She received her MFA from USC’s School of Cinema-Television and is currently writing a book called “Crafting Images: A Hands On Approach to Communicating to an Audience.” Her wide range of creative work includes motion graphic design for film and television clients Sony Pictures, HBO, MTV, and the Fine Living Channel.
She has helped create press kits and behind the scenes packages for Spiderman, “Charlie’s Angels”, “Dawson’s Creek”, “Party of Five”, “The 6th Day”, “Jeopardy”, and many others. She has created DVD architecture design work for Sony Family Entertainment and has created web work for many corporations including Sony Pictures, Activision, and Quicksilver.
Mrs. Cleveland’s passion is documentary filmmaking. She has worked on documentaries, including “The Swell Life”, as well as other projects that aired on the CBC, the Sundance Channel and PBS.
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