Change the Status Quo Keynote Speakers


Preview Night: Screening of “The Mind of Mark Defreist”, and Q & A Session with Filmmaker Gabriel London

Gabriel London


Gabriel London began his work on criminal justice issues as an undergraduate at Pomona College, where he won the Albert R. Broccoli film award for a prison documentary, Turned Out. Continuing with incarceration stories, in 2001, Gabriel produced and directed No Escape: Prison Rape in America, two short films that accompanied the Human Right Watch report of the same name and that were honored with a Soros Criminal Justice Award. In 2004, Gabriel went on to produce Drew Barrymore's MTV documentary about youth voting, The Best Place to Start, and in 2008, he directed Snoop Dogg's autobiographical streets-to-prison story, Youth Authority: California for Spike TV. Gabriel's work has been included in international campaigns like Live Earth and Hopenhagen, as well as film festivals such as IDFA, Media that Matters and Urbanworld. In recent years, Gabriel has traveled extensively creating documentary based campaigns relating to disaster relief, clean energy and climate change, while serving as a partner at Found Object, a creative agency in Brooklyn, NY.



Keynote Speaker

Dr. Brittney Cooper

Brittney Cooper is Assistant Professor of Women’s and Gender Studies and Africana Studies at Rutgers University. She is a Black feminist theorist who specializes in the study of Black women’s intellectual history, Hip Hop generation feminism, and race and gender representation in popular culture. Her forthcoming book Race Women: Gender and the Making of a Black Public Intellectual Tradition (University of Illinois Press) examines the long history of Black women’s thought leadership in the U.S., with a view toward reinvigorating contemporary scholarly and popular conversations about Black feminism.

Dr. Cooper is also a sought after public speaker and commentator. In addition to a weekly column on race and gender politics at, her work and words have appeared at the New York Times, the Washington Post,, TV Guide, the Los Angeles Times,, The, MSNBC’s Melissa Harris-Perry Show, All In With Chris Hayes, Disrupt with Karen Finney,and Third Rail on Al-Jazeera America, among many others. She is also a co-founder of the Crunk Feminist Collective, a popular feminist blog. In 2013 and 2014, she was named to the’s Root 100, an annual list of Top Black Influencers.

Dr. Brittney Cooper is a proud alumna of Howard University (class of 2002) and proud native of North Louisiana.


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