Center’s new “Story Board” is a community of storytellers and scholars
In an expansion aimed at enhancing the study, celebration and practice of public storytelling, the Pell Center for International Relations and Public Policy has named two dozen people to a newly created, at-large “Story Board” that will advise the center’s leadership on the development of its Story in the Public Square initiative.
“We’ve brought together a tremendous group who add a broad range of creative and cultural interests and expertise to our overall effort,” said Dr. Jim Ludes, executive director of the Pell Center. “We expect their involvement in this effort to enrich and enliven the discussion of storytelling in public affairs.”
Story Board members will advise the program’s directors, judge contests and mentor students. Members will be encouraged to contribute their own writings, still and moving images, and other expressions to www.publicstory.org and other forums. They will offer ideas on improving and expanding Story in the Public Square.
The founding members of the Story Board are:
- Dorothy Abram, writer and associate professor of social sciences at Johnson & Wales University
- Susan Areson, deputy executive editor at The Providence Journal
- David Boeri, senior reporter at WBUR 90.9, Boston’s NPR station
- Jennifer Cook, associate professor of English and secondary education at Rhode Island College and director of the Rhode Island Writing Project
- Pamela Reinsel Cotter, assistant managing editor for breaking news and social media editor at The Providence Journal
- Christopher B. Daly, associate professor of journalism at Boston University
- Xue Di, poet and fellow in Brown University’s Freedom to Write program
- Steven F. Forleo, English professor at the Community College of Rhode Island and faculty adviser for CCRI’s student paper The Unfiltered Lens
- John Freidah, photojournalist, documentary filmmaker and multimedia producer at Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Department of Mechanical Engineering
- Gitahi Gititi, writer and professor of English, film and media studies, and African and African American studies at the University of Rhode Island
- Gary Hart, Huffington Post blogger, author and former U.S. senator
- Paulla Dove Jennings, storyteller, historian, educator, Narragansett Tribe elder and curator of the Tomaquag Indian Memorial Museum
- Steve Klamkin, radio news journalist at WPRO 630 AM and 99.7 FM
- Kathryn Larsen, program director at Rhode Island PBS
- John Lavall, documentary filmmaker
- Judy Barrett Litoff, author and professor of history at Bryant University
- Mia Lupo, student at Salve Regina
- George T. Marshall, founder and executive director of the R.I. International Film Festival and adjunct professor of communications and film at Roger Williams University
- Lorelei Pepi, animation artist and part-time faculty at the Rhode Island School of Design
- Sussy Santana, poet and performance artist
- Lorén Spears, storyteller, educator and executive director of the Tomaquag Indian Memorial Museum
- Jim Taricani, investigative television reporter at WJAR NBC-10
- Alisha Pina Thounsavath, staff writer and columnist at The Providence Journal
- Padma Venkatraman, author and instructor at the University of Rhode Island’s Graduate School of Oceanography
- Karen Thompson Walker, novelist
- Agnieszka Woznicka, animation artist and associate professor at the Rhode Island School of Design
Members endorse the core concept of Story in the Public Square, namely to study, celebrate and cultivate the use of storytelling in public affairs. Established in 2012, Story in the Public Square staged its first Story Day in April 2013, when it welcomed former Sen. Gary Hart as keynote speaker and presented the first Pell Center Prize for Story in the Public Square to two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Dana Priest of The Washington Post. The Pell Center will host the second Story Day this spring.
Story in the Public Square’s objectives are incorporated under this motto: Experience. Share. Act. The program is a joint initiative of the Pell Center and The Providence Journal, with major grant support from the Rhode Island Council on the Humanities. For more information, visit www.publicstory.org or follow the program on Twitter and Facebook.