Monday, July 6, 2009

“The Century of Woman” Women’s eNews shaping online women’s journalism.

When I was introduced to Rita Haley Jensen through Facebook by her daughter Ariel Jensen Vargas, she was sharing their recent Women’s eNews annual 21 Leaders for the 21st Century 2009 honorees. I had heard about the celebratory award given to 21 extraordinary female newsmakers (and one man) chosen every year. Nobel Peace Prize winners, writers, journalists, women’s rights activists, are selected from around the globe by non-profit Women’s eNews, for their “demonstrated commitment to creating change on behalf of all women”.

Rita Haley Jensen

Interested in the organization behind this prestigious, outstanding leadership award, I asked Ariel with whom I could speak to and possibly interview, she lead me to founder and president of Women’s eNews Rita Haley Jensen.

As I researched Rita, read her articles, listened to her interviews, and watched her videos I was moved to my core. This lively international woman with her bright white hair, sparkling ice blue eyes and her enthusiastic sweet voice has shaped woman’s journalism for over two decades. She has inspired, hired, trained and mentored hundreds if not thousands of women journalists around the world. Rita is a former senior writer for the National Law Journal who won an Alicia Patterson Fellowship grant in 1994 and wrote an expose about the role lawyers played in the savings-and-loan scandal of the late 1980s. 1

Her amazing staff of professional women journalists at Women’s eNews; located in the heart of New York City, one block from Susan B. Anthony’s ‘Revolution’ newspaper publishing house (a newspaper for women’s rights in 1868) provides up to the minute breaking women’s news. Their focus at Women’s eNews is “balanced and non-partisan journalism” an electronic news service that distributes national and international women’s issues covering public policy, justice, reproductive rights, domestic violence, rape, trends in business, culture, politics, education, health, law, sports and safety.

Ten years ago, when Women’s eNews first began, they had their small staff and a mission. As Kathryn Rodgers, president of the news service’s parent organization, recounts its genesis this way: “Looking out at the media’s coverage of women, we saw a tremendous void in women’s voices, in women as opinion shapers, and in the coverage of all the things that women do in society. So we decided to show the media what they were missing. Not to go on a blame campaign, but to do the ground work, actually do the reporting, and go back to these media outlets and say, ‘Here’s what we’re talking about when we say you’re not covering women’s issues.’ ” 1

Same Website, New Design.

When I spoke to Rita shortly after, I was inspired by her relentless dedication over the years to women, young and old, speaking to what is possible in their lives. A commitment for all women to have their full rights acknowledged, and a peaceful life. What was Women’s eNews vehicle to reaching women around the world? Their ten year old website, “a model T Ford that got the job done” Rita laughed. Celebrating being online for 10 years as of June 15, 1999, Launched by the NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund, is now getting a cutting edge, state-of-the-art new face August 2009.

Rita is excited about the opportunities their new website will create for everyone. An interactive site, with activities, favorite women blogger’s highlighted, survey questions, polls, and amazing photographs will be coupled with their archive of over 4,000 articles from international journalists. A popular feature; Journalist of The Month will remain. They have an active Facebook with a goal of hitting their 500 Facebook members.2

Women’s eNews has a growing membership and subscribership from major news organizations to small journalist and blog members. In over 120 Nations, everyday 100 of their brave, on-the-front-lines journalists deliver original stories not available anywhere else, each Wednesday, to Women’s eNews. Proudly they offer an Arabic site launched in 2003. The news service’s staff sends a weekly e-mail to some 8,000 newspapers, targeting national editors with a budget describing syndicated stories. In addition, a separate e-mail is sent to op-ed editors offering new commentaries.1

As I browsed through their current site, I was impressed with how much free information they were able to squeeze into their ‘model T Ford’. The current stories they were highlighting while I was visiting were ‘Health Reform’, ‘AT&T Case spotlights Gender issue for Sotomayor’ by Sharon Johnson, ‘Onal Found Remorse Among Turkish ‘Honor’ Killers’, ‘July Promises Femme Films’ by Jennifer Merin, ‘Iran, Dissidence Achieves Gender Parity’ by Soheila Vahdati, Women’s Philanthropy Outpaces the Pack’ by Kayla Hutzler, ‘U.N puts Female Peacekeepers on Display’ by Theresa Braine. Other stories were Iran’s Women’s Rights Activists Are Being Smeared, Influential Women’s Magazine Silenced in Iran, Memoir Goes Behind Iran’s Prison Gates, Black Maternal Health.

Rita and I continued to speak about the current protests in Iran, and she told about the type of women they honor, and support like a prominent women’s rights activist in Tehran, Iranian journalist and Human Rights Attorney Shadi Sadr, whom accepted their Ida B. Wells Award for Bravery in Journalism at the Women’s eNews 21 Leaders for the 21st Century. Ms. Shirin Ebadi, is a Nobel Prize winner, and during the protest she was threatened with judicial prosecution. She has been a respected voice defending human rights, and women’s rights in Iran.

We agreed the importance of being proactive with our children, and young people in creating awareness of what is happening in the world. Women’s eNews goes as far as giving walking tours to young journalism students, groups, organizations and visitors for an hour in their historic neighborhood.

When asking Rita to look back at what expectations did she have in 1999 for women’s news coverage, major media coverage about women, and how her website might influence both areas, this is how she recalls that time:

“It was a hunger, really, to do the journalism

I loved and to present to the other news media—here,

these are great stories. I had hoped the power of

our journalism would inspire them to do the same.”

Furthermore, I asked her what progress has she seen in the ten years she has been offering an e-news service? She recalls; “I see that major newspapers are improving their coverage, particularly of women overseas and feminist is no longer a pejorative and feminism is no longer being declared dead or passé.”

After making huge journalistic progress and contributions over the last ten years through Women’s eNews, I asked her what she thought the next ten years would look for Women’s Rights, including in the media, this is what Rita had to say: “Even with a pro-women’s rights president in office, many battles must be fought—fair employment practices, reproductive justice—the opportunity to have children or not—freedom from violence, just to name three…”

Without really knowing the full global impact Women eNews has truly been for the landscape of fair journalism for women, Rita is remarkably humble. She is truly on the front lines with her dedicated army of professional female journalists. I attribute her character to that of one particular woman who launched a paper called “Revolution” a century ago, fighting for women’s right to vote only a few blocks away from their headquarters.

So, naturally I asked her “Do you believe Women’s eNews has been at the foundation or source of this progress?” Rita’s response: “Women’s News can’t take credit for the entire shift, but I am confident that without us, it might not have happened.”

Rita Henley Jensen is Founder and Editor in Chief of Women’s eNews (, an independent daily news service covering issues of particular concern to women, which has won 31 journalism awards, including the PASS Award from the National Council on Crime and Delinquency and the Rosa Cisneros award from the International Planned Parenthood Federation, Western Hemisphere Region. Jensen also was named by the New York Daily News one of the 100 most influential women in New York. A former senior writer for the National Law Journal and columnist for The New York Times Syndicate, Jensen has more than 20 years of experience in journalism and journalism education, as well as an armload of awards, including the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism Alumni award, the Hunter College Presidential Grant for Innovative Uses of Technology in Teaching, the Alicia Patterson fellowship, and the Lloyd P. Burns Public Service prize. Jensen is also a survivor of domestic violence and a former welfare mother who earned degrees from Ohio State University and Columbia Graduate School of Journalism. She is also the grandmother of four, two granddaughters and two grandsons.

Anyone can obtain permission to republish the material in any medium simply by dropping them a note.Women’s eNews is a project of the incubator program of the Fund for the City of New York, a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization. For more information, or to inquire about subscribing or to make a donation, please visit or call (212) 244-1720.

Bobbi Miller-Moro is the founder of Women Without Borders, is an supporter for Women’s Rights and successful co-parenting; author of ‘Lessons We Learned From Obama’, actress and filmmaker of transformational films, and mother of five children. She lives with her husband and children in Los Angeles.

  1. Nonprofit launches journalism operation to cover women’s issues
  2. Womens eNews Facebook page: Here
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Tuesday, June 16, 2009

ONE TO WATCH: Actor Martinez Brings Authenticity To Film | Bobbi Miller-Moro

by Bobbi Miller-Moro

When you first meet Martinez, you would never guess under his sly smile he is one of the most authentic talented character actors coming up in Hollywood. I met him in an acting class by accident. I was there to meet Randy Becker, a cool, brilliant acting coach in Hollywood that I had been doing business with. Although my attention was on Randy, a distinct whiskey sounding voice was whipping out one line jokes from the back of the room, I turned around to look.

It’s obvious this guy has a quick sense of humor. Sitting in his gray pull-over sweatshirt he was hidden in the dark. Being from LA and being around actors for most of my professional life; I would say I have heard and seen it all. I thought at first, he may just be like every outspoken, wise cracking surly actor. Until he got up to perform.

Martinez played a Network TV Station owner furious from the uncontrollable antics of the host of his TV show. Once he was in character I was taken away immediately. Transforming himself completely into this character, every movement, nuance and breath was convincing. I could not take my eyes off of him; he was hypnotizing. He held his anger in, with momentary outburst he was full of surprises. His voice is gravelly with a pitchy quality to it. I wanted to know more about him, and so I talked to him after his scene. Born in Miami, raised in Jacksonville, Martinez originally had dreams of winning a national championship with the University of Miami Hurricanes.

When his Football dreams were thwarted, he chose instead to enroll in Stetson University's Pre-Law Program. Although he had an intense passion for the law, and devoured justice as a second nature language to him; it wasn’t quite the fit he had anticipated. On a $20 bet during his 1st semester, Martinez auditioned for the school play and was cast in the hit comedy: "Beau Jest". He found his expression was being these eccentric characters and knew there was nothing else for him but acting.

Martinez auditioned for and was accepted into the top ranked Boston University B.F.A. conservatory program. He became classmates with the likes of Ginnifer Goodwin (Big Love, He's just not that into you, Walk the line, ED) and Wayne Willcox (Rent, Gilmore Girls). His rich heritage being half Dominican and half Puerto Rican gives him a unique look with his light green eyes and curly light hair, and an impassioned fire in his belly that he gives away whole heartedly. I likened what I saw of him on stage as to ‘Less Grossman’ in Tropic Thunder played by the one and only Tom Cruise. You don’t look away for a second, not wanting to miss a thing.

Throwing himself 100% into his portrayals on screen, he has been cast as the tyrant Pontius Pilate in Warner Bros Film “Color of The Cross: Resurrection” as a supporting role, a killer in the film Actual Images, "The Valley Murder Tapes", a supporting role in the film “Breaking It”, and in FOX’s “Prison Break” as an irritated Dade County police officer. He has been nominated for “Best Supporting Actor” in the film, “Breaking It”. Martinez was a principal character in the film “The Creek” an intense horror film and a dizzying list of theatrical performances.

Managed by Healy Artists, he has been busy with various projects including Bill Folman’s latest comedy short. Bill Folam, writer and director and author of THE SCANDAL PLAN or: How to Win the Presidency by Cheating On Your Wife has said; "Martinez is a force of nature, an actor whose characters are filled with life, passion, and a sense of play. He is also smart, dedicated, a consummate professional and everything a director could hope for in an actor."

Martinez is a consummate comic as well as a twisted Tarantino-type intellect. His range is limitless and I believe he belongs no where else but leaving his heart on the screen for all of us to savor. This type of other-worldly authentic talent comes around only every so often in our generation. Nobody really knows how actors are discovered in Hollywood, but many great performances tighten the race to A list. I'm placing a bet on Martinez to be one of them.

Official site

Monday, May 11, 2009

Jen's List - A Powerful Mom Empowering Women.

By Bobbi Miller-Moro

In the beginning everyone wants to ‘have it all’ in life. In my continued quest of searching for exceptional mothers around the world who embody the very characteristics of mothers who enjoy the full bounties of life, I find these exquisite gems. Jennifer Levinson was my next discovery.

Jen Levinson

Jen Levinson

When my favorite daycare was requested an interview by reporter Stacey Butler from CBS Channel 2 News in Los Angeles, we were happily surprised. We found out that the Stacey found Great Expectations Child Care in Mission Hills through Jens List, a mom’s guide to what’s “hot, new, and undiscovered – from baby products to nannies to fun family stuff to do.” I had heard about this popular website that Jennifer had come up with unintentionally. I sat down with this busy mom of five boys to uncover her secrets of how she started this phenomenon in the middle of her busy life.

Bobbi: Where did you come up with the idea to do a blog like yours?

Jennifer: It was never something that I planned on. I was on bed rest with my 1st set of twins for 5 months and was so bored in bed. I subscribed to a lot of magazines, watched TV and searched the web and when I found something cool, I would pass it along to a few of my friends. They forwarded the info to their friends and soon, 5, turned into 20, 20 turned into 100 and now we are almost at 9000 members.

Bobbi: How long has it been running?

Jennifer: It started in April 2005

Bobbi: What type of successes have you had?

Jennifer: For almost 4 years I did it 100% for free. In Jan. of this year, I decided to have a top sponsor and the idea has been very successful. I am booked at least 2 months in advance now for that spot!

Bobbi: How many children do you have?

Jennifer: 5 boys, including 2 sets of identical twins

Bobbi: Do you work from home?

Jennifer: I do all my work from a computer sitting in my dining room on a TV tray!

Bobbi: Can you generate enough from your blog to not work on an outside job?

Jennifer: The sponsorship has been a wonderful 2nd source of income for our family.

Bobbi: Do you have other interests?

Jennifer: I love being involved in my children’s school and volunteering whenever I can.

Bobbi: Where do you see your website going into the future?

Jennifer: I would like to grow the membership as much as I can and perhaps take Jens List to other cities and states.

Bobbi: Can you believe your success?

Jennifer: It is hard to believe what Jens List has turned into and how far it’s come from nothing. I am so incredibly blessed and thank my lucky stars everyday for what it has become.

Bobbi: What makes your service different or stand out from the competition?

Jennifer: There is really nothing else like Jens List that I know of. Someone once described it a gift. Each morning when they open their email, they never know what they are going to find.

Bobbi: Who is your primary audience?

Jennifer: Families ages 25-50 in the greater LA and Ventura counties

Bobbi: Tell us a little bit about your background?

Jennifer: I was born and raised in the San Fernando Valley, and I have 4 younger brothers. I have an incredible spouse (Mike Levinson) and a babysitter that helps me with the kids.

The Levinson familyThe Levinson family

“I thank god everyday that I am on this planet”

–Jennifer Levinson

Bobbi: Tell us about your husband?

Jennifer: He works in medical device sales, but is a registered dietitian, by trade, and loves all aspects of fitness. He was born and raised in Texas and went to the Univ. of Austin.

Bobbi: How does he feel about your blog?

Jennifer: Sometimes he is supportive and others times I know he is frustrated by the amount of time it takes, however now that it is earning income, he is a little less apt to complain about it!

Bobbi: Has it ever occurred to you the impact you would have on small businesses, esp. run by women/mothers?

Jennifer: I love that Jen’s List is able to spread the word about small businesses. I have received enormous feedback about what it has done to help some people and that alone, makes all the hard work so worth it!

One of the lives Jennifer has touched is Nydia Sanchez-Kimp. A single mother of 2 children who was starting a now very success child care business in the San Fernando Valley, Nydia had no idea how much one request to Jennifer, to be on her site, could do for her. “She was very nice when we spoke, and when CBS called asking for a 24 hour day care, there was Great Expectations, and Jennifer recommended my child care.”

Nydia Sanchez-Kimp

Nydia Sanchez-Kimp

Reporter Stacey Butler and Nydia Sanchez-Kimp at

Great Expectations Child Care.

Since the story aired her home-based child care has not only received bountiful press, but Nydia is now looking for a bigger facility and hiring more assistants. “I never would have dreamed this would happen. People have been so amazing, donating their items, and their services to help us. I am here for the low income parents who work odd hours and can’t afford the expensive rates in the other child care facilities. She truly made a huge difference for us.”

Bobbi: Do you get to take time off?

Jennifer: I never take time off. I should. But its non-stop with 200+ emails a day, so taking a vacation, at this point, does not seem feasible!

On her blog she describes her life, “I have in the middle of pediatrician visits, adjusting to new school schedules, play dates, the grocery store, picking up Lego pieces, cleaning, soccer classes, cooking and catching some sleep, thought a lot about my life.” Like most mothers, finding the balance to have it all is an art. Her attitude about ‘slowing down’ and talking life one day at a time is what works for Jennifer. “Mike is great, working hard and honestly, I am not lying, life is good. Sometimes, after dinner, before bedtime, when it’s pretty much pure chaos in my house, but in a good way, I just sit back and take it all in. I have had a few people witness it and all have the same reaction…”where are the cameras?”

Although her family comes first, Jen’s List has become a monumental task.

Bobbi: What is your ultimate goal for yourself with your business?

Jennifer: I hope to appeal to a larger source that would eventually like to run the day to day operations, however stay on board to oversee what is taking place.

They have posted two options: Advertisers can purchase a Jen’s List “Top Sponsorship”. They will be promoted at the top of a Jen’s List newsletter with some personal verbiage by Jennifer. Or if you feel you have gained something from Jen’s List and want to say “Thanks”, you can contribute via Pay Pal.

Bobbi: What advice would you say to mothers about pursuing their dreams, ideas or goals?

Jennifer: I would say to go for it. You only live once and you never know if what you have are what others are going to need!

What is so inspiring about Jennifer is that she has not let the fact that having five small boys, a full life, a husband stop her from pursuing her passions; but she wanted to reach out to other mom’s and share things she found online that she thought was ‘cool’, from activities to child care. She enjoys helping everybody with what she finds and learned online. In the process she has helped launched many women and mother’s small businesses into successful operations. This little gem has turned out to be a infinite gold mine.

Ways to connect

Jen’s List:

If you have a business that may be interested in supporting Jen’s List, and promoting your product or service as a sponsor, please see our Sponsorships page.

Great Expectations Child Care Mission Hills, CA

Bobbi Miller-Moro is a filmmaker, artist, author of ‘Lessons We Learned From Obama’, and Founder of Women Without Borders US. She resides in Los Angeles, CA with her Cuban activist husband Luis Moro and their five children.

Filed under: powerful mothers , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Monday, April 20, 2009

A Child Care Center That Really Caters To The Needs Of The Parents During Economic Difficulties.

“In the time of hardship, job loss, and economic recession Great Expectations Child Care center in the San Fernando Valley steps up to the needs of parents, with quality and affordability with Nydia Sanchez at the helm.”

IMMEDIATE RELEASE-Mission Hills, Ca April 17, 2009

As seen on CBS Evening News/ KCAL 9 News-April 17, 2009 interviewed by Reporter Stacey Butler.

Nydia Sanchez is one of those bright eyed, happy and innovative mother of two that you would want to just be friends with, never the less have your children in her child care.
Her licensed child care is getting exceptional responses due to her ability to pay attention to the individual needs of parents.

“I just couldn’t believe the rates the child care centers were promoting around this area, and especially during these economic times. It is ridiculous. And if you go somewhere with lower rates, you compromise care. I heard so many discouraged and anxious parents, so I decided to help.” Nydia, owner Great Expectations Child Care

And that is exactly what she did. Nydia admits that she is in an older established neighborhood in Mission Hills, Ca but it is safe and gated and she has everything she needs to operate her home based child care center. She offers 24/7 round the clock care, with parents who work night shifts, or out of town business, last minute emergencies, and any other normal day to day events of the parents.

The children range in age from infants to K-6 ages, and her and her assistant Stephanie have activities for them all. “The babies have a blast here because there is so much going on, and they love it.” Nydia beamed. “And the older children always have something to do.”

What sets her apart is her level of care for the cost. Nydia offers three hot meals a day, play time, a computer lab, arts and crafts and curriculum based on age. Her parents are very happy. And with a 24/7 schedule you cannot beat that. She posts her rates online on her blog while her website is finishing being put up. (

“I don’t know what I would do without Nydia. She operates her center from her heart, as an Independent Filmmaker of five children I need good quality, dependable child care that I can truly afford. I tried everything from live-in nannies, to cheap home care, to big chain pre-school centers. This was my best find ever, the kids love it here.” –Bobbi Miller-Moro (mother and owner of Luis Moro Productions).

CBS News contacted Nydia to interview her and parent Bobbi and show her child care center that offers so much for so little. Nydia Sanchez has plans to open larger facilities and eventually go nationwide. She demonstrates an ability to have a successful child care and give so much of herself to the children.

She has posts in Craigslist and JensList, as well as various other online ads. But, it was word of mouth that has been working so well, and now the rest of Los Angeles will know about this great find.


“New Hollywood Competition Looks To Online Users and Indie Filmmakers For Network Television Content”

“New Competition from NexTv Entertainment is looking for smart online content, short films, student films, and documentaries to be reviewed by unprecedented panel of Industry judges.”
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE-April 16, 2009-Hollywood, Ca

NexTv Web Series & Short Film Competition is the first definitive competition of its kind, going worldwide in its search for cutting-edge content that can be transformed into tomorrow’s television, both scripted and unscripted. Reflecting the reality of today’s television marketplace, NexTv recognizes that filmmaker-generated content is the key to finding the next breakout show, whether it’s Comedy, Reality, Drama, Documentary, Sci-Fi or anything in between.
In this competition, web series, short films, documentaries and trailers will be judged as much for the viability of the idea as for the overall quality of the production.

NexTv Web Series & Short Film Competition announces its 2009 LINE-UP OF JUDGES who will choose the GRAND PRIZE WINNER. Heather Courtney (Head of TV for Overbrook, WILL SMITH’S Prod. Co), Andrew Steele (Head of WILL FERRELL’S website, FunnyOrDie - SNL writer), Leonard Torgan (Producer – HBO’s IN TREATMENT), Randy Cordray (Producer, THE OFFICE), Dan Bree (Producer, HISTORY CHANNEL, NAT’L GEOGRAPHIC CHANNEL), Josie Freedman (premiere Film Agent at ICM), Leila Feinstein (Lead Anchor, KTLA Evening News), David Chalian (The Political Director of ABC News), Jerry Sandoval (Cube Vision – Ice Cube’s production company), Elizabeth Baruglio (Original Films – I AM LEGEND, SUPERMAN RETRNS), Victoria Burrows (Burrows/Boland Casting–LORD OF THE RINGS), Scot Boland (Burrows/Boland Casting– DEATH RACE, POLAR EXPRESS), Jim Hart (Writer – CONTACT, HOOK, DRACULA, SAHARA, LAST MIMZY), Tom Collier (Attorney with Bloom, Hergott... - rep BRAD PITT, RON HOWARD), Justin Kirk – (ACTOR, Series Regular on hit Showtime series, WEEDS), Joel Milner (Lit Agent and owner of Larchmont Literary Agency), Rich Guay (Producer– SHUTTER, KINSEY), Christine Buckley (Lakeshore Ent – MILLION DOLLAR BABY, UNDERWORLD).

The demand for more sophisticated shows from network television is increasing, while the willingness of the networks to risk big sums of money developing their own pilots has fallen through the floor. That’s why they are looking for fresh ideas online. “With web series and ‘home-made’ videos popping up in every corner of cyberspace, the internet is emerging as the 21st century way for mainstream television networks to find highly developed, proven content (and talent) for the next season and the next generation of television. “ –Randy Becker (Founder of NexTv Entertainment).

The early deadline May 15 application deadline for entries is quickly approaching and filmmakers and applicants are encouraged to sign-up now.
The grand prize winner, as well as the best-in category winners will be announced in a press release that will be delivered to the personal email boxes of over 100 of the top executives in Hollywood. This includes executives from: The top agencies/agents (CAA, ICM, GERSH, etc…), ALL the ‘major’ Studios & Networks (DISNEY to PARAMOUNT, NBC to FOX, etc…), The ‘mini-major’ studios (LIONSGATE, etc…), Top Production Companies (JJ Abrams’ BAD ROBOT, Bruckheimer TV, etc…). Television Creators, Casting Directors, Writers, Directors, and many more will be contacted on your behalf.

The NEXTV INDIE FILM GRANT will be given to the grand prize winner. This grant includes $1,000 in cash, along with equipment, essential computer software for filmmakers, and goods & services to help execute winner’s next project. Sponsorship deals have not yet been announced, so check the website for specifics.

Contact information and to download application:
NexTv Entertainment
PO Box 5072
Culver City, CA 90231

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Thursday, April 9, 2009

Whispers Gains New Voices…



 HOLLYWOOD CA Friday April 10th, 2009


Whispers Gains New Voices…


Sir Ben Kingsley's SBK Pictures and Luis Moro Productions have announced the additions of Keith Harper and Erik Huey as Executive Producers on the feature film Whispers Like Thunder, written by Trip Brooks and Luis Moro. Based on actual events, the film will detail the story of three Native American sisters who fought the U.S. Government for sixty-seven years to protect their ancestral Native burial ground. It is a sweeping epic that stretches from the Wyandotte Trail of Tears in the 1850s to the United States Supreme Court nearly a century later.


Keith Harper is a highly-respected representative for Native American affairs and has represented tribes and individual Indians in some of the most high profile litigation in the country. A member of the Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma, Mr. Harper most recently served as an advisor to the Barack Obama Campaign on Native American policy and outreach. The National Law Journal has recognized him as one of the “50 Most Influential Minority Lawyers in America.”


Erik Huey has served as a successful entertainment industry lawyer and was listed as one of the "100 Most Influential Media & Entertainment Lawyers in America” by the Hollywood Reporter’s “Power Lawyer List.” He is an active liaison between Washington politics and Hollywood entertainment, most recently working on the Barack Obama campaign in its voter protection and mobilization efforts in Western Pennsylvania.


On the project, Harper says, “This is a quintessential Native American story of courage and perseverance, but unfortunately, it is also a story that is largely forgotten. We want to bring this amazing narrative to life for a new generation of Americans, and we want to do so authentically, utilizing Native American talent wherever possible every step of the way.”


In addition to his producing chores, along with partners Simone Sheffield and Valerie Hoffman, Kingsley will portray Charles Curtis, the only Native-American to serve as Vice President of the United States. Daniela Lavender is also on board to portray Ida Conley.


“We are honored to be working with Sir Ben Kingsley and thrilled to be a part of a team that is so strongly committed to the Native-American experience and vision,” said Erik Huey.


Kingsley states, “It is my hope in producing this film to illuminate the noble struggle the Conley Sisters had to endure to preserve their ancestor’s sacred burial ground and legacy.”


SBK Pictures was formed in 2007 by Sir Ben Kingsley and his producing partners Simone Sheffield and Valerie Hoffman. Luis Moro Productions is headed by the producing team of Luis and Bobbi Miller-Moro. Also on the SBK Pictures plate is Will, about William Shakespeare recalling his life as he dictates his last will and testament to his lawyer; Duncan, a fantasy comedy written by Barton Randall; Jutland 1916, an action epic about the famous WW I naval conflict, Quixote, a Rusty Lemorande-penned screenplay about the author Miguel Cervantes and his creation Don Quixote; and I Know A Place, a quirky British comedy to be written and directed by Barton Randall. 

Friday, April 3, 2009

Cuban Filmmaker Luis Moro exposes Congressional Cuba Democracy.


No footage found.

Below:   Line item response on Congressional Cuba Democracy Caucus letter.

The Honorable Barack Obama                                              March 30th, 2009

President of the United States of America

The White House

Washington, DC 20500


Dear Mr. President:


Given our commitment to transform America for the 21st Century.  I’m writing you in direct response to a letter sent to you by the Congressional Cuba Democracy Caucus. The timing of Vice President Joe Biden declaring the U.S. will not lift the embargo on Cuba seems suspect of old boy backroom politics U.S. citizens want elected to eradicated.


First and foremost, you must know the signers of the letter do not represent the overwhelming majority of Cuban Americans in the United State as they claim. They also do not represent the majority of Americans. 


I’m a proud US citizen whose immigrant story is similar to millions of people. I was born in Cuba, my single mother raised me, I graduated from Rutgers University and I’m self-employed working to fulfill the American dream providing for my wife and children. 


My Cuban exiled mother, Rufina, died in my hands of ovarian Cancer at the age of 54.  After 38 years in America, my mother never saw her brothers, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, and friends in Cuba because of US. Cuba policies.  


My grandmother, Lazara, is 88 years old. She had to sneak illegally into Cuba three times in one year during the Bush presidency to see her dying son, Ruperto. She saw my uncle a few days before he died.  Two of my grandmother’s children died never seeing each other for 38 years. My remaining family is literally separated and destroyed physically due to failed U.S. Policies with Cuba.


We know that millions of people have had their families and friendship broken by Cuban and U.S. politicians alike.  People on both sides of the policy have endured the heavy and brutal hand of politics from both countries. With all that, as a country, America can only be responsible and transform our own policies and actions.


Much of the content in The Congressional Cuba Democracy Caucus letter provides misrepresentations, misleading statements and in some cases lies crafted to influence you towards continuing another US presidential term of failed policies with Cuba.


The letter signers represent 50 years of failed practices toward Cuba.  It is publicly known some of the signers and their colleagues are viewed in the halls of congress for being notorious political wolves, trading and swapping votes to maintain and enforce their agendas against Cuba.  It is also well known to the public, the letter signers use lobbyist monies for campaign donations, favors and whatever influence necessary to obtain “outsourced” congressional and senatorial anti-Cuba votes from many representatives. Simply said, the list of politicians who seemly vote against Cuba for a campaign donation is historically long and spreads from coast to coast, north and south.


The bottom-line is the signors have historically high-jacked U.S. Policy towards Cuba, in no way representing the overwhelming anti-embargo on Cuba will of U.S. citizens.


Their deceptive letter demonstrates they do not represent the best interest of the United States, they do not symbolize the best interest of Cuban-Americans and they certainly do not stand for the best interest of the people in Cuba.


The historical and current facts and realities of the U.S. embargo on Cuba demonstrate the many failures. Decade after decade The United Nations votes overwhelming to abolish the embargo against Cuba.  We all know your presidential election victory in Florida, especially in Miami proved that local communities also desire an end to the embargo on Cuba.  


I ask you to publicly bring your transparency mandate to U.S. Cuba policies and avoid being another presidential administration who is lied to, coerced and high-jacked into supporting and enforcing 50 years of failed US policies toward Cuba.


We the people want the United States to abolish the embargo on Cuba. We ask and trust, that you and your staff, as well as Congress and the Senate will continue toward a new 21st Century integrity for America.  Please continue your path to break and transforms a proven 50-year history of failure with Cuba, respect the will of the American citizen and create unity with the world.


Please support others and me in giving our grandparents open access to our families and friends in Cuba during their remaining golden years, our life time and our children’s future.


I look forward to your response. Until them I remain...

“Committed to your Success”




Luis Moro



Below:   Line item response on Congressional Cuba Democracy Caucus letter.



March 30th, 2009. 

To U.S. Citizens. 

On March 24th, 2009 the Congressional Cuba Democracy Caucus sent President Barack Obama a public letter. Below is my line item response. 

What gives me a voice on this issue? 

I’m a U.S. Citizen. I was born in Cuba, immigrated to the United States via Mexico, raised by my mother, graduated Rutgers University, lettered three years of football. I’m an award winning filmmaker, acknowledged Hollywood writer. I’m the first and only American to make a full-length feature film in Cuba in the last fifty years.  

I’m also married, raising five kids and working to fulfill the American dream. My mother died never seeing her family in 38 years because of the embargo on Cuba. My 88 year old grandmother has had to sneak into Cuba three time to see her dying son. He’s also now dead.  

I have campaigned and raised monies for both Senator Bob Menendez and Congressman Albio Sires. We grew up in the same community.  We have thousands of mutual friends and associates. I support most of their work, but I am 100% in disagreement with their allegiance and representations regarding U.S. Cuba policies. 

The bottom-line is, the claims by the Cuba Democracy Caucus members sent to the President of The United states border perjury.  They present false claims and assumptions in order to continue their failed 50 years of in effective policies towards Cuba. 

As a Cuban-American citizen of The United States, I’m asking our government, media and fellow citizens to stand-up with no retreat to abolish the U.S. embargo on Cuba.

Much more could be said, and will be supported by relentless actions toward transforming our failed U.S. history of policies toward Cuba. 

I look forward to your actions towards abolishing the U.S. embargo on Cuba. 


Luis Moro 

U.S. Citizen 



The following are the signers representing the Congressional Cuba Democracy Caucus. 

Lincoln Díaz-Balart (R-FL)      

Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) 

Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL)              

Kendrick Meek (D-FL)   

Mario Díaz-Balart (R-FL)  

Albio Sires (D-NJ)                            

Robert Andrews (D-NJ)  

Frank Pallone Jr. (D-NJ),  

My responses are in bold following the congress member’s claims.

March 24, 2009 

The Honorable Barack Obama

President of the United States of America

The White House

Washington, DC 20500 

Dear Mr. President: 

1)  As Members of the Congressional Cuba Democracy Caucus, who represent the overwhelming majority of Cuban Americans in the United States, we would like to briefly share with you some thoughts concerning U.S. Cuba policy. 

LUIS MORO REPSONSE: On what factual basis do they make this claim? 

The signers of this letter do not represent the overwhelming majority of Cuban Americans in the United States. They do not represent any of the Cubans outside the United States and they certainly do not represent the interest or overwhelming desire of the Cubans in Cuba.  

America’s mandate for change was clearly demonstrated in Obama’s democratic victory in the Florida Republican districts of Ros-Lehtinen of 58% for Obama, Mario Diaz-Balart 52% for Obama, and Lincoln Diaz-Balart 67% for Obama. These incumbent Florida signers barely won their reelection against under funded, lesser known candidates. 

Overall the Florida Cuban-American community voted for Obama’s promise of change with Broward delivering 67% of voters, Miami-Date delivering 58% of voters, Monroe delivering 52% and Palm Beach delivering 62%.   

The state of Florida delivered 27 uncontested electoral votes to Obama’s promise of change, with McCain’s continued enforcement of the Embargo on Cuba policies obtaining zero electoral votes. 

New Jersey’s Bob Menendez and Albio Sires districts, in particular Hudson County delivered 73% voter turnout for Obama. NJ provided 15 uncontested electoral votes for Obama. 

On what factual basis does the Congressional Cuba Democracy Caucus claim to represent the overwhelming majority of Cuban Americans? 

Congressional letter continued... 

2)  Just 90 miles from our shores, extraordinary men and women are struggling daily against a brutal 50 year-old dictatorship and look to this great nation for solidarity.  

LUIS MORO REPSONSE: As it’s known, the signers of this letter do not have any immediate family in Cuba as I do or the people effected by their actions. The majority of Cubans in America and Cuba have not received any meaningful solidarity results in 50 years from U.S. Politicians.   

Within our own U.S. borders extraordinary men and women are struggling daily against a brutal 50 year-old U.S. policy toward Cuba that has separated and destroyed families and friends who expected Cuban-American politicians to provide solidarity with Cuba.  

U.S. politicians have failed and continue to fail with our U.S. policies toward Cuba. 

Congressional letter continued... 

3)  Your presidency comes at a decisive moment for Cuba. You will have an extraordinary opportunity to assist the Cuban people in finally achieving their freedom.

LUIS MORO RESPONSE: Yes President Barack Obama has this extraordinary opportunity as did every past president for the last 50 years.   

It has been the leadership and guidance of the signers of this letter and their counter parts who have equally failed over 50 years.  Ultimately the only people responsible for their own freedom are the people living in Cuba.  

The U.S. needs to simply get out of the way of Cubans in Cuba governing themselves. 

Congressional letter continued...  

Cuba Measures in the FY 2009 Omnibus Appropriation Act 

4)  We agree with the interpretation of the general license for agricultural travel and the definition of cash-in-advance requiring payment before shipment from U.S. ports, as outlined in Secretary Timothy Geithner's March 9, 2009 letters to U.S. Senators Bill Nelson and Bob Menendez. 

LUIS MORO RESPONSE: Any “agreement of interpretation” from congressional leaders who continue to support 50 years worth of failed policies against Cuba need to be questioned and reviewed with due diligence, especially given their proven history of failed policies, actions and intent toward Cuba. 

Congressional letter continued... 

5) However, in regard to Cuban American travel, we are troubled by the explanation in the "Guidance on Implementation of Cuba Travel and Trade-Related Provisions of the Omnibus Appropriations Act of 2009” that the general license grants "unlimited" lengths of stay in Cuba.  

LUIS MORO RESPONSE: As American citizens, we have the right to travel around the world as long as we follow existing citizenship/visa travel laws that apply to all Americans.  Excluding Cuba from existing U.S. laws is simply continuing the failed policies of the last 50 years. 

Congressional letter continued... 

6)  We believe that this will serve to channel U.S. taxpayer dollars directly to the regime because retirees and Supplemental Security Income recipients could remain on the island indefinitely while collecting U.S. taxpayer-provided benefits. 

LUIS MORO RESPONSE: America has existing Social Security Laws as well as laws related to retirees and how they decide to spend their lives and earning. We as a country do not need any more politically motivated laws on U.S. citizens, especially with the intent of preventing new U.S.-Cuba travel policy changes.

Congressional letter continued... 

u.s. Sanctions 

7) The goal of freedom for the Cuban people has long been a U.S. policy of state, supported by Administrations and Congresses of both political parties.  

LUIS MORO RESPONSE: This statement is an outright lie and it’s appalling that the signers of this letter would present this to President Barack Obama as truth.   

U.S.-Cuba policy has been high-jacked by self interest politicians and anti Cuba lobbyist alike.  It is no secret to the American people and politicians that U.S.-Cuba policies are dictated by vote swapping, vote trading and cash campaign donations.   

The will and desire of the American people has been sold off to Cuban lobbyist. The world knows the leaders of U.S. political abuse towards Cuba are Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Lincoln Diaz-Balart, Mario Diaz-Balart and Robert Menendez. 

Congressional letter continued... 

8) This U.S. policy of state becomes more important each day with the serious illness of Fidel Castro, the ultimate power in the very personalized totalitarian Cuban dyarchy.   

LUIS MORO RESPONSE:  The U.S. Policy of state with Cuba has always been of most importance for Cuba-Americans who where born in Cuba, have family in Cuba and have lost half a century of life with friends and families due to failed U.S. policies and practices toward Cuba.  

Congressional letter continued... 

9) In a bipartisan fashion Administrations and Congresses have insisted that before the U.S. makes any concessions to the Cuban regime, all political prisoners must be freed, all political parties, the free press and labor unions legalized, and internationally supervised elections scheduled.  

LUIS MORO RESPONSE:  It is false to claim this is a bipartisan demand. It is a wish many people want. But the facts remain, it’s a demand that has not been honored in Cuban history by Castro and previous dictators or Cuban presidents alike.  Ironically some of the dictators and associates in power prior to Castro are direct relatives to some of the members of the Congressional Cuba Democracy Caucus. 

It must be noted that when Cuban-American Journalist Max Lesnik was able to get a bus load of Cuban political prisoners freed to the United States, the anti Cuban lobbyist (some who continue to be supporters of the signors of this letter), proceeded by bombing Mr. Lesnik’s Miami business, bombing Miami Police offices and delivering and fulfilling on death threats to many more. 

Congressional letter continued... 

10) Any easing of sanctions, without demanding any concessions lessening the oppression of the people by the regime, will serve to strengthen the dictatorship and demoralize the Cuban people. 

LUIS MORO RESPONSE: Another false statement with baseless assumptions. One thing that is certain, the Cuban people on the island have not been demoralized by Fidel Castro or the Cuban-American politicians who continue to claim they speak for the Cuban people everywhere. 

The fact is American, Cuban and global citizens are not demoralized by the acts of U.S. politicians who continue failed paths. We in fact only have compassion for their own demoralizing behavior which include selling themselves for cash contributions, plus vote swapping and vote trading pretending to embody the people of the United States.  

Congressional letter continued... 

Aid to the Pro-Democracy Movement 

11) As you will recall, Congress, by strong bi-partisan majorities, recently appropriated a significant increase in U.S. aid to the pro-democracy movement in Cuba.  

LUIS MORO RESPONSE:  As a Cuban-American citizen, I would like to know and see how any of the funds ever budgeted for aid to the pro-democracy movement in Cuba actually made a difference in Cuba or The United States.  

Congressional letter continued... 

12) Congress has also consistently supported funding for Radio and T.V. Marti, which provide the Cuban people with uncensored information that the regime attempts to block, and which also provide pro-democracy activists a vehicle to share their messages throughout the island. 

LUIS MORO RESPONSE: Again, this document is based on false assumptions that have produced no results. I’ve been to Cuba; Cuban’s are currently watching American programming not self-serving programming from Radio and T.V. Marti.   

One would find an audit of the hundreds of millions spent on Radio and T.V. Marti to be a mere profit center for anti-Cuba lobbyist.  Radio and T.V. Marti has made no difference in shifting the Cuban government. 

Congressional letter continued... 

13) Congress was very clear in its intent that the United States should increase aid to the pro-democracy movement inside Cuba. We also look forward to working with you to make certain that U.S. assistance reaches the pro-democracy movement in an efficient and expeditious manner.  

LUIS MORO RESPONSE: After 50 years of implementing various versions “U.S. assistance to the pro-democracy movement” in Cuba no results have been produced.  The money given, the money recipients and the beneficial results are never publicly presented to the people of the United States. 

Congressional letter continued... 

14) We also look forward to working with you to make certain that Radio and T.V. Marti continue to be funded and improved to better serve the U.S. national interest in a democratic transition for the people of Cuba. 

LUIS MORO RESPONSE:  It is ironic that Radio and T.V. Marti represent capitalism yet get require government funding. It is time to simply cut their funding and let them succeed in an open capitalist market like the majority of Americans do.   

Americans who are against the 50 years of failed U.S. Cuba policies are self funded.  U.S. national interest will be best served - by U.S. national interest eliminating 50 years of failed policies towards Cuba. 

Congressional letter continued... 

The International Community 

15) Too many in the international community are seeking to assist the Cuban dyarchy in its goal of obtaining unilateral concessions from the United States and succeed in its attempt at absolutist succession once Fidel Castro dies. 

LUIS MORO RESPONSE:  The reality is, the majority of The United States citizens are for a transformation of U.S. Cuba policies.  The assumptions made on the international communities intent is more of the same by anti-Cuba politicians.  

Their claims are not based on facts, but only geared for anti-Cuba lobbyist to control Cuba. The anti-Cuba lobby simply wants to revert back to a Cuba that they and their ancestors controlled. America and the international community want a Cuba that is self determined by it’s own citizens living in Cuba. 

Congressional letter continued...

16) It is critically important for the international community to receive a clear message that the Obama Administration stands firmly and clearly on behalf of a genuine democratic transition in Cuba, and will not grant the Cuban dictatorship any unilateral concessions.  

LUIS MORO RESPONSE:  Vice-president Joe Biden’s recent comments committing America to a continued failed embargo on Cuba is extremely suspect of continued high-jacking of the will of the American people by back-room politics.  

No one is asking for unilateral concessions. The citizens of America and the international community are requesting for a transformation in U.S. Cuba policies.  

To do this, we must allow unrestricted travel and commerce with Cuba.  We the American people will decide and determine our participation with Cuba.  The Cuban people will decide how they will self-determine their own future. We must simply get out of the way – and promote human-to-human contact and commerce between Cuba and the United States. 

Congressional letter continued... 

17) All our friends in the international community should be urged by your Administration to join the U.S. in demanding free, multi-party elections for Cuba. 

LUIS MORO RESPONSE: For decades, all our friends in the international community have voted overwhelming in the United Nations to abolish the U.S. Embargo on Cuba. It is the minority Cuban-American politicians and lobbyist that must adapt to the 21st Century. The people of Cuba will determine their electoral destiny. 

Congressional letter continued... 

Cuba's Political Prisoners 

18) The Cuban dictatorship will attempt to use political prisoners as a bargaining tool with your Administration. Please recall how the regime has used political prisoners in the past in this manner, only to detain hundreds more once its immediate goals were reached. 

LUIS MORO RESPONSE: One can say much about the U.S. and Cuba’s history and recent past when it comes to political prisoners.  Please recall how our policies with Cuba dictated by the signors of this letter have failed for 50-years. 

We are living in the 21st Century and America, as the greater more developed country must take the first mature step towards reconciliation and transformation with our global relationships.  Living, governing and acting based on failed U.S. policies and their negative effects will keep America out of being and providing 21st Century leadership. 

The irony of these letter signers “bargaining tool” statement is the degree to which our own U.S. politicians will barter American citizens lives, defer Americas health and well being and devastate the financial security of our nation as a “bargaining tool” against the President of The United States. They will do this in order to maintain 50 years of failed U.S. policies against Cuba. 

Congressional letter continued... 

19) We will continue to do all we can to bring to light the inhuman conditions suffered by Cuba's political prisoners and to call for their unconditional release.  

LUIS MORO RESPONSE:  We all want this, but should not have it be the reason why millions of people’s families and friendships are destroyed by continuing failed U.S. Cuba policies. The proven road to freedom is uniting, providing and human-to-human contact. Not war, separation or the financial strangling of a nations people. 

Congressional letter continued... 

20) Your solidarity and advocacy on their behalf is critical, and it can serve as inspiration, not only for the hundreds of thousands of patriots who have been incarcerated for their beliefs, but for the entire Cuban nation. 

LUIS MORO REPONSE:  We all welcome inspiration for all people, especially warranted patriots of all nations.  

It is important to know the signers of this letter consider “Luis Posada Carriles” a patriot even though he confesses to committing terrorist acts in The United States, international terrorism and has bombed a Cuban civilian airline, hotels and murdered hundreds.  

To inspire America and Cuba, the U.S. must simply eliminate all the U.S. restrictions that have been instrumental in destroying the Cuban economy, devastating U.S. Cuba relationships between family and friends, and has been the number one platform used to keep the Cuban government in place by it’s own admission.  

Congressional letter continued... 

21) We would look forward to joining you in a strong demonstration of support for Cuba's freedom. 

LUIS MORO RESPONSE:  The American people look forward to the signers of this letter joining American citizens and the rest of the world in the 21st Century by abolishing the U.S. embargo on Cuba. 

With Best Regards, 


      Luis Moro  

      U.S. Citizen