Video Volunteers Elects Davia B. Temin Chair of the BoardCommunity Video Empowering the Voices of the World’s Unheard

NEW YORK– September 30, 2010: Video Volunteers, the international media organization empowering the voices of the world’s unheard communities, announced today the election of Davia B. Temin as Chair of the Board. Ms. Temin, a marketing, media and crisis strategist, and CEO of  Temin and Company, has been on the Video Volunteers board since 2006.

Jessica Mayberry, Founding Director of Video Volunteers says, “Davia Temin has helped hundreds of companies around the world raise their voices and visibility, and strategically hone their positioning in good times and in crisis. Her leadership will bring the voices of the communities we serve, and of Video Volunteers itself, to ever greater prominence.”

“Today, you don’t need to be literate to make a video or have an impact around the world. All you need is the right kind of empowerment – training, tools and distribution outlets,” says Ms. Temin. “Video Volunteers is one of the most innovative, visionary organizations enabling the world’s disadvantaged to raise their own voices by mobilizing journalism, storytelling and technology. ‘Community video’ is coming into its own, as these global – but personal – stories and content are being sought by television stations around the world, as well as on the Internet.”

Video Volunteers’ mission is to empower the world’s poorest citizens to right the wrongs they witness by becoming players in the global media revolution. Video Volunteers provides disadvantaged communities with journalistic, critical thinking and creative skills, and creates locally owned and managed “community media units” that teach people to articulate and share their perspectives on the issues that matter to them – on a local and a global scale. “People in rural areas of the developing world suffer from a huge lack of relevant information, and this prevents the poor from devising their own permanent solutions to their problems. Video Volunteers’ work addresses this great need,” says Ms. Mayberry.

Davia Temin is the Chief Executive Officer of Temin and Company, a global marketing strategy, reputation and crisis management and C-suite coaching consultancy. They help to create, enhance and save reputations for a wide array of corporations and other institutions at the Board, funding and senior management levels.

Prior to founding Temin and Company 14 years ago, Ms. Temin ran corporate marketing for GE Capital; Schroders in the United States; Wertheim Schroder, where she created and produced “The Big Picture: The Business of Media and Entertainment Conference;” Scudder, Stevens and Clark; and Citicorp North American Investment Banking. She also was the first Director of Public Affairs of Columbia Business School, starting Hermes Magazine there, and worked on the executive staff of the Governor of Massachusetts.

An honors graduate of Swarthmore College, she attended Columbia University for her master’s degree. She has served on the Board of Managers of Swarthmore, and currently is First Vice Chair of the Board of Girl Scouts of the USA and Chair of their Fund Development Committee. Ms. Temin also serves on boards or advisory boards of: The Knight Bagehot Fellowship at Columbia Journalism School; ProPublica; The White House Project; The Harvard Women’s Leadership Board; and The Cleveland Clinic Institute Leadership Board.

Video Volunteers is co-led by Jessica Mayberry and the Indian filmmaker, human rights activist and community media expert Stalin K. Other members of Video Volunteers’ Board include filmmaker Kathy Eldon, philanthropist Eva Haller, Ode magazine editor Jurriaan Kamp, psychologist Francesca Kress, investment manager Jack Mayberry, Academy-Award-winning documentarian Albert Maysles, entrepreneur Freeman Murray, media strategist Michael Rosenblum and TV producer Martha Spanninger. Publisher Bipin Shah and entrepreneur Raj Kondur are the trustees, along with Stalin K., of Video Volunteers India, a registered Indian trust.

About Video Volunteers

Video Volunteers’ flagship Community Video Unit program sets up locally owned and managed media services in which communities produce and view community-specific news and documentaries in areas that have never received relevant information from the mainstream media. The Community Video Units, which are set up in partnership with many of the leading NGOs in India, have inspired thousands of people in slums and villages to organize and take action on issues such as health, sanitation and women’s rights, and in the process they have halted corruption, exposed human rights violations, increased understanding between communities in conflict, enabled women to speak out and created permanent platforms for community dialog and discussion.

Video Volunteers’ other key program, IndiaUnheard, is a “community news service” in which community correspondents from every state in India report on issues ranging from corruption to local culture, allowing a global web audience to learn about issues of human rights and poverty directly from those who live it. “We are continually working on new strategies to bring the stories of disadvantaged communities in India, Brazil and other parts of the world to the attention of the global media,” says Founding Director Jessica Mayberry.

The organization’s goal is that every last village in the world will have someone equipped to use technology to advance human rights. In India, Video Volunteers has created the largest, most diverse network of full-time, salaried “Community Video Producers” anywhere in the world. Their media has been seen by more than 300,000 people in outdoor screenings in thousands of villages and slums. Nearly 200 villagers and slumdwellers – former diamond polishers, rickshaw drivers and day laborers – are currently working as Community Producers. More than 50% of these people are women, and also come from the communities most affected by human and civil rights violations, namely Dalits, Tribals and Muslims. Video Volunteers’ journalism training of women, which builds capacity in critical thinking, confronting authority, asking questions and researching any issue, has created a new batch of women leaders in all the communities where Video Volunteers and its partners work.

Video Volunteers has created new business models that are lifting people out of poverty. The organization has a research project with the leading business school in India, the Indian Institute of Management. It started a program in the favelas (slums) of Brazil helping people develop video businesses and secure jobs in the TV industry. Many of the Community Video Units earn revenue, some as high as 25% of yearly operating costs. Says Ms. Mayberry: “Video Volunteers has succeeded in developing the entrepreneurialism of the creative poor. We think it’s possible to envision a global network of community-based news stringers who work for the global media.”

Active in India and Brazil, Video Volunteers is a winner of the Knight News Challenge, a prestigious journalism award; a TED Fellowship; and an Echoing Green Fellowship, which is the premier recognition for young social entrepreneurs. In 2008, Video Volunteers was shortlisted for the International Development Prize of the King Baudouin Foundation of Belgium.

Video Volunteers has had partnership, funding, consultancy or training relationships with many leading organizations, including UNDP, Witness, Fledgling Fund, Art Action, the Global Fund for Children, Pangea Day, International Youth Foundation, HIVOS, Creative Visions Foundation and Goethe-Institut, among others. The concepts that Video Volunteers developed have been supported by USAID, UNESCO and the Sir Dorabji Tata Trust. Video Volunteers’ work has been featured on MTV, Nickelodeon, The Star Network, Pangea Day, several CNN platforms and Current TV, demonstrating that community-produced content can work in the mainstream.

The founder of Video Volunteers has been recognized as an “Architect of the Future” by the Waldzell Institute of Austria and invited on a tour of Japan by the Junior Chamber as one of their five annual “Young Persons of Distinction” awards program. Video Volunteers has won the NYU Stern Business Plan Competition, a Tech Award, Manthan Award and Development Gateway Award shortlist. In May 2010 Video Volunteers was the community media partner for the UN’s World Summit of the Information Society, the primary gathering for global agenda-setting in the communications arena.

Davia Temin, Chair of the Board, says: “In an age when the world lives ever closer together, yet there is increasing misunderstanding, enabling the excluded to speak for themselves – rather than speaking for them – is key to a more democratic society. The day is not far away when every village in the world will have someone equipped with a video-enabled cell phone, and Video Volunteers’ work can ensure people can use these new technologies to change things for the better.”

For further information, please visit www.videovolunteers.org, follow us @twitter/videovolunteers, or fan us on Facebook. To speak with Ms. Temin or Ms. Mayberry, please contact Trang Mar at 212-588-8788 or email news@teminandco.com.

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2 Comments

  1. it is sad to see this happening still, let us chaNGE THIS EVEN IF IT NEEDS FORCE AND STRICT RULES, WE NEED TO STOP THIA IN 2012…NOW, IT IS A SHAME THAT INDIA IS LOOKED DOWN BASED ON THIS IN USA

  2. let us start our protest… its time to begin.

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