A documentary series exposing the epidemic of MMIWG (Missing & Murdered Indigenous Women & Girls) in the US.
Melinda Janko, Director/Producer/Writer
Melinda is the President of Fire in the Belly Productions, Inc., a company whose mission is to “make films that make a difference,” She is an award-winning documentary filmmaker who made her Directorial Debut in 2016, with the release of 100 Years: One Woman’s Fight for Justice, about the legendary Blackfeet activist, Elouise Cobell. Melinda spent two years, building relationships of trust with Native Americans and obtaining unprecedented access to Senators, Congressmen, the federal judge, the Department of the Interior, and many more to tell this story about the Cobell lawsuit that was 14 years in the courts.
Todd Burns, Executive Producer
Todd is a seasoned producer and entrepreneur. He has built film, media technology, and health companies. He is an award-winning film producer on films such as The Stoning of Soraya M and is the founding chairman of Liberty in North Korea, among other human rights non-profits and initiatives.
Bart Morse, Executive Producer
Bart specializes in helping visionary leaders build and fund new ventures. Passionate about social impact, Bart has worked closely with Pivotal Ventures, Melinda Gates innovation and investment company. Prior to that he spent three years living in Southeast Asia where he worked for a leading private intelligence agency, providing recommendations to the United Nations, British, and US government designed to protect the ethnic people of war-torn Myanmar. Prior to that Bart helped transform data and analytics inside the walls of clients such as Microsoft, The Academy of Motion Pictures, and the Federal Reserve Bank. He helped build social enterprise Pura Vida Coffee, a Harvard Business School case study, into a national operation.
Common Pictures, Executive Producer
Common Pictures amplifies stories that humanize, inspire and heal our broken world. We look to understand the world as it is and pause to consider how it might be. Through impact films, documentaries, photography and other creative mediums, Common Pictures stories affirm social justice, environmental stewardship and the dignity of our shared humanity.
Michèle Ohayon, Producer
Michèle is an award-winning director, writer, and producer. Born in Casablanca and raised in Israel, Michèle is best known for her Academy Award nominated film Colors Straight Up, as well as Steal a Pencil for Me, Cowboy del Amor, and It Was a Wonderful Life. Her documentary Strip Down, Rise Up is a Netflix original doc now streaming on Netflix. Michèle's most recent documentary The Unbreakable Tatiana Suarez, premieres on HBO on Jan. 31, 2024. She serves on the Academy Of Motion Pictures’ Executive Committee of international film as well as on the documentary branch.
Patricia (Patsy) Whitefoot, Yakama Nation, Educator, MMIW Advocate, Co-Producer
A longtime Yakama Nation educator and activist for missing and murdered indigenous women and girls, both in Washington State and nationally. Patricia, whose sister disappeared in 1987 in an unsolved case, has been instrumental in directing the state police to study how to increase and improve criminal justice resources on these cases. "As families, we simply seek justice and healing of the heart," Whitefoot told lawmakers in her written testimony.
Stephon Litwinczuk, Co-Producer
Emmy® nominated Associate Producer and member of the Producers Guild, Stephon Litwinczuk’s work has been shown in theaters and television in the US and around the globe. Stephon began his career working on the documentary series, Behind the Masks: The Story of the Screen Actors Guild and the award-winning 100 Years: One Woman’s Fight for Justice. He also Directed/ Produced/Edited the documentary film, Falling Up!
Taylor Turner, Director of Photography
Taylor Turner, is an award-winning Director of Photography with over a decade of experience telling impactful stories around the globe. He is known for crafting visually stunning narratives in cinematic feature documentaries and a deep commitment to environmental and social justice issues. Recipient of the Best Cinematography Award at the New York Cinematography Awards, a Sundance Official Selection, and an Emmy-nomination for Okavango: River of Dreams, Taylor consistently pushes the boundaries of nonfiction visual storytelling. His impactful work extends beyond accolades, notably in Last of The Rhinos, a film that raised over a quarter-million dollars for rhino conservation in Southern Africa and helped revive a once-extinct species in Botswana. His work has been showcased by Netflix, BBC, National Geographic, PBS, the Sundance Institute, Terra Mater Factual Studios, and GoPro.
John Echohawk, Pawnee Nation, Executive Director, Native American Rights Fund
John Echohawk has been recognized as one of the 100 most influential lawyers in America by the National Law Journal. John, is closely monitoring the efforts to challenge the legal rights of Tribal governments to prosecute non-natives who commit domestic violence against Native women, authorized under the 2013 Violence Against Women Act (VAWA).
Lisa Brunner, Anishinaabe member of White Earth Nation, Minnesota
Lisa Brunner has survived numerous sexual assaults by non-Native and Native American men alike, which drove her to advocate for the past 20 years on behalf of other victimized Native American women. Lisa is also a founding member of the National Congress of American Indians, Violence Against Women Task Force and a 2016 Bush Fellow. “When a non-native rapes an indigenous woman, that to me is a hate crime,” Brunner said. “When we are facing a level of victimization where 67 percent of our perpetrators are non-native, that is race-based hate. We are being targeted for who we are as native women.”
Sarah Deer is a lawyer and a professor of Women, Gender, and Sexuality studies and Public Affairs and Administration at the University of Kansas. She was a 2014 MacArthur fellow and has been inducted into the National Women's Hall of Fame. Deer advocates on behalf of survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence, primarily in Native American communities. She has been credited for her "instrumental role" in the 2013 reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act, as well as for testimony which is credited with the 2010 passage of the Tribal Law and Order Act.