LaTosha Brown is an award-winning community organizer, philanthropic consultant, jazz singer and political strategist with over twenty years of experience working in the non-profit and philanthropy sectors on a wide variety of issues related to social justice, economic development, leadership development, wealth creation and civil rights.Ms. Brown is currently the CEO of TruthSpeaks Consulting, Inc., a philanthropy advisory consulting business based in Atlanta, GA. She is the co-founder of Black Voters Matter Fund, a power building southern based civic engagement organization that played an instrumental role in the 2017 Alabama U.S. Senate race. She has served as a consultant and advisor for individual donors, various public foundations and private donors. She is a founding member of the Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors’ Gulf Coast Fund for Community Renewal and Ecological Health and also served as fund’s first Executive Director. Under her leadership the Gulf Coast Fund gained national recognition, created strategic national partnerships and distributed over $6 million in re-granting dollars for community and coastal organizations in the gulf coast region. Ms. Brown has consulted, advised and/or served as a resource and expert on rural organizing and special programming to a variety of foundations such as the Marguerite Casey Foundation, Ford Foundation, Babcock Foundation, Black Belt Community Foundation, Friends of New Orleans, New World Foundation, Open Society Institute, Surdna Foundation, Community Foundation of South Alabama, Clinton Foundation, Clinton Global Initiative, Ibis Partners Investment Group and the Tides Foundation to name a few.

Peter Gilbert was Producer and Director of Photography of Hoop Dreams, which appeared on over 100 “top ten” lists for 1994 and has won numerous awards. Hoop Dreams has been selected into the National Film Archives and also selected the most important documentary film in history by the International Documentary Association. A distinguished career in producing, directing, and photographing documentaries, narrative feature films, commercials, branding, and music video includes co-producing and co-directing the awardwinning film At The Death House Door, which has won numerous awards and was short-listed for the Academy Award for Best Documentary. Produced and Directed, With All Deliberate Speed, the first work in the new series “Discovery Docs” for the Discovery Network in 2004. The nationally-released film portrays the drama of the monumental Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court decision that helped change the racial fabric of our country in 1954. With All Deliberate Speed was nominated for a Prime Time Emmy for Distinguished Work in Non-Fiction Film. There is No Place Like Home, a short film produced for Turner Classic Movies, has played at festivals worldwide including Cannes, Venice, and Tokyo. It has also been broadcast worldwide on TCM. Peter currently teaches filmmaking at Wake Forest University. He has been a member of Kartemquin Films for 30 years.

Marsha Gordon joined the film studies faculty at North Carolina State University in 2002.  She teaches courses and publishes research on the Hollywood studio system; Sam Fuller, Ida Lupino, and other independent filmmakers of the 1940s and 1950s; and documentary and orphan films, especially of the educational variety. Dr. Gordon’s new book, Film is Like a Battleground: Sam Fuller’s War Movies, will be published in February 2017 by Oxford University Press. She is also the co-editor, with Dr. Allyson Nadia Field (University of Chicago), of Screening Race in American Nontheatrical Film, a collection of essays that is under contract to Duke University Press. She is the author of Hollywood Ambitions: Celebrity in the Movie Age (2008), co-editor of Learning With the Lights Off: Educational Film in the United States, (Oxford University Press, 2012), and former co-editor of The Moving Image (University of Minnesota Press), the Journal of the Association of Moving Image Archivists. Dr. Gordon has a monthly show, “Movies on the Radio,” with Laura Boyes & Frank Stasio, on 91.5/WUNC’s The State of Things.

Kim Lan Grout (President) is the Director of Marketing and Communications for the Jewish Federation of Durham-Chapel Hill. She is a writer, photographer, and disability advocate, founding the Redefining Disabled Project in 2013. Kim Lan was the Outreach Director and Impact Producer for the documentary Farmer Veteran, which aired on the PBS series Independent Lens in 2017 (and was an SDF-sponsored project). Storytelling is her specialty, making connections with people and places using a variety of medium. A dedicated change maker, Kim Lan is excited to help SDF artists stand firmly and unapologetically in their truths to foster understanding and healing in our global community.

Allison Inman is education and engagement director at Belcourt Theatre, Nashville’s nonprofit film center. Born and raised in Cookeville, Tennessee, she studied English, journalism and poetry at Tennessee Tech University in her hometown. She worked in public relations and communications consulting for a decade before finding her true passion in film engagement. A part-time publicity job at Rocky Mountain PBS in Denver introduced her ITVS Community Cinema, a public documentary screening/discussion series, which she led in Denver, New Orleans, and eventually in Nashville. She was a national engagement consultant for ITVS for four years before building an education and engagement program at the Belcourt. There she creates and hosts discussions, seminars and performances around the theatre’s rich offering of new independent, documentary, repertory and foreign language films. And, with the Belcourt’s Mobile Movie Theatre, she brings art house films to schools and community centers, engaging youth and adults in the art of cinema and the deeply personal connections we all make through film. In 2010 she directed a short documentary, MUD ON THE STARS: STORIES FROM ELIA KAZAN’S WILD RIVER. It tells the stories of Bradley County Tennesseans who served as cast and crew for Kazan’s 1960 film, the first major motion picture shot in its entirety in Tennessee.

Eric Johnson founded his own company, Johnsound Productions, while a student in North Carolina State University’s School of Design. His early work included composing, writing, and recording jingles for local and regional clients, as well as studio production for artists seeking recording contracts. In 1988, Eric began to move away from producing artists and began to concentrate on music for advertising and soundtracks for non-broadcast corporate video and film projects. In January of 2003, Eric joined Trailblazer Studios to launch the music and sound department, providing custom music, sound design, and mixing for film, video, radio, television, theatrical, and multimedia presentations. In Eric’s role as VP of Sound + Engagement, he is intimately involved with Trailblazer’s music and sound efforts, but also works daily to help Trailblazer Studios become known one of the premiere content creation and post-production facilities in the region. Projects include commercials for Travelocity, Nationwide Insurance, Chevrolet, Sherwin Williams, and CBS Sports; television program production for Discovery Channel, TLC, OWN, HBO, National Geographic, PBS, and DIY/HGTV; and ADR services for Paramount Pictures, Disney Channel, Columbia Pictures and NBC Universal.

Irene Oakley Johnson is First Lady of Clark Atlanta University (CAU) where she has become an integral part of the life of the University and the ambassador for “Lifting Every Voice” at CAU.  She is the former procurement professional in the Mission Operations Support Office at NASA’s Lyndon B. Johnson Space Center (JSC) in Houston, Texas.  Prior to joining NASA Irene had a successful career in human resources development and talent management and acquisition. She served as the Corporate Recruiting Leader in the Futurestep division of Korn Ferry International and Regional Corporate Recruiter for Mercer HR Global, one of the world’s largest employee benefits consulting firm.  She is a former board member and  development chair at the Center for Contemporary Craft, Houston Museum of African American Culture, and Inprint, Inc., a literary arts organization celebrating writers and poets.

Sandy Marshall (Treasurer) was born and raised in Winston-Salem.  She graduated from Salem College and has an MBA from the McColl School of Business at Queens University of Charlotte.  At Salem College, she minored in Not-for-Profit Management and gained an appreciation for the nonprofit sector. Sandy relocated to Durham to work at the Jewish Federation of Durham-Chapel Hill as the Finance and HR Manager.  This opportunity has allowed her to work in two areas that she is passionate about…business and nonprofits.  Outside of work, Sandy enjoys traveling, cooking, playing chess and Scrabble and spending time with her nieces.   

Kirsten Mullen is a folklorist and the founder of Artefactual, an arts-consulting practice, and Carolina Circuit Writers, a literary consortium that brings expressive writers of color to the Carolinas—both based in Durham, NC. She was a member of the Freelon Adjaye Bond concept development team that was awarded the Smithsonian Institution’s commission to design the National Museum of African American History and Culture. Under the auspices of the North Carolina Arts Council she worked to expand the Coastal Folklife Survey, and as a Community Folklife Documentation Institute faculty member, she trained students to research and document the state’s African American music heritage. She was a consultant on the North Carolina Museum of History’s “North Carolina Legends” and “Civil Rights” exhibition projects. Her essays have been published in museum catalogs, journals, and a host of commercial publications. 

Alyson Newby (Vice President) is an Associate Creative Director at Method Savvy – a downtown Durham marketing agency. She grew up in the area but has spent many years moving around various parts of the country. After leaving for ten years, she has ventured back to make a true home for herself in Durham. Her career in marketing began as a copywriter after attending graduate school at The Creative Cirus in Atlanta, Georgia. Her career has taken her through many different marketing mediums with video production as a constant favorite. In her current role, she helps develop strategy and creative work for a variety of communications efforts. Outside of work, Alyson enjoys spending time with her husband and their aggressively affectionate dog.

Ellen Stolzman (Secretary) has a long history in the marketing of entertainment products. After receiving an MBA from Wharton she joined CBS, where she spent nearly 10 years engaged in worldwide marketing for American pop, rock, jazz, country, and R&B artists and their recordings; the other half of her time was spent working with classical soloists, orchestras, and opera singers in the U.S. She worked closely with artists, producing music videos, arranging personal appearances and tours, and working with television, radio, and retail distribution channels. She joined Simon & Schuster to launch their books on cassette and home-video businesses, and then moved to HBO Video, where she worked for almost 10 years. At HBO she marketed all types of programming, specializing in non-feature film programs such as documentaries, music, sports, and educational. With P&L responsibility for this sector, she evaluated programming, negotiated rights, executed contracts, and created innovative marketing strategies and campaigns to achieve awareness of and distribution for niche products in niche markets, building the sector into a fast-growing and profitable business area. Ellen became a resident of Chapel Hill a few years ago when her husband took a position in Research Triangle Park.

Ricky Hurtado (on leave of absence) is the Executive Director of the Scholars’ Latino Initiative (SLI). In this capacity, he works toward expanding equitable access to higher education for Latino students across North Carolina.  In general, his work focuses on advancing social and economic equity by applying a critical understanding of race, place, class, and gender. Throughout his personal and professional experiences, Ricky has worked to find the intersection of immigrant rights and racial justice issues in an effort to unite communities and mobilize support for programs and policies advancing equity.  Ricky earned his BS with Honors in Business Administration as a Morehead-Cain Scholar at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and a Master’s in Public Affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University.  He is a proud resident of Durham and is always looking for ways to lift up the untold stories of the emerging Latino community, in the city and throughout the South.


Dr. Steven Channing brings a wide range of experiences as an historian, author, and Emmy Award-winning filmmaker. Over the past two decades his documentaries have explored many American stories, from The Lost Colony to the nationally broadcast February One: The Story of the Greensboro Four. His Durham: A Self-Portrait was broadcast on Fox50, while Change Comes Knocking: The Story of the North Carolina Fund, Down Home: Jewish Life in North Carolina, and Generation of Change: Bill Friday, Terry Sanford and North Carolina have regularly been screened on UNC Television. He is currently completing Remarkable Journey: The Voices of Asian Indians in North Carolina.

Cynthia Hill is an Emmy and Peabody Award-winning filmmaker whose credits as a producer/director include the feature-length documentaries Tobacco Money Feeds My Family, The Guestworker, February One, and Private Violence, as well as the PBS series A Chef’s Life. Her projects are often accompanied by community outreach campaigns that provide a forum for viewers to initiate dialogue and become actively involved; the 18-part multi-media project Survivor to Survivor offers resources and educational tools for victims and others. A native of Pink Hill, NC, Hill began her production career as an editor at GLC Productions in New York City, but telling stories that are grounded in a sense of place led her back South, and she now makes her home in Durham, NC.

Past Board Members (Emeritus Board)

  • Herb Amey
  • Sharon Anderson
  • John Biewen
  • Laurie Bley
  • Eric Boggs
  • Kathy Carter
  • Rebecca Cerese
  • Cynthia Collins
  • Vandana Dake
  • Kenny Dalsheimer
  • Kathy Dole
  • Dawn Dreyer
  • Vivian Bowman Edwards
  • Mimi Fountain
  • Greg Garneau
  • Micah Gilmer
  • Bonnie Gordon
  • Dionne Greenlee
  • Jim Haverkamp
  • Titus Brooks Heagins
  • Rick Igou
  • Alan Jacobs
  • Dante James
  • Elisabeth Haviland James
  • Allegra Jordan
  • Shambhavi Kaul
  • Carl Kenny
  • Rishi Kotiya
  • Cicero Leak
  • Malinda Lowery
  • Louise Maynor
  • Beverly Meeks
  • Scott Misner
  • Diana Newton
  • Kemi Nonez
  • Rhesa C. Rubin
  • Chloe Seymore
  • Alan Teasley
  • Peter Tompkins
  • Nicole Triche
  • Tom Whiteside
  • Judy Van Wyk