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What People Say About WIMN

Journalists on WIMN and the POWER Sources Project

WIMN has been a great tool in finding diverse guests for a lot of our programming as well as pointing out important issues to us.

- Jessica Golden Writer/Booker, ABC News Now

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Women In Media & News has built an invaluable resource in the Power Sources Project. Through it, I am always able to locate articulate, critical female voices for both edgy and everyday topics. The time sensitivity of WIMN's services, combined with the quality of the experts, make a powerful one-two punch for journalists looking to diversify their stories.

- Misty Harris National consumer trends reporter, CanWest News Service

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If I had called WIMN as soon as I received an assignment to write an analytical article about female politicians in the media, it would have saved me a lot of time. WIMN had all the information I needed as well as useful archive articles, and director Jennifer Pozner answered all the questions I had and then some, without taking sides or grinding axes. WIMN was immensely helpful to me and I highly recommend them as a resource for information and as a source of expert opinion.

- Eric T. Hansen Freelancer for Cicero, the German magazine for politics and the arts

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This email is just to congratulate you on the brilliant way you express yourself, a great writing craft and a real aggressive style of putting things together ... would love to read more from WIMN.

- Kalpesh Yagnik Executive Editor, Dainik Bhaskar (India's largest circulated morning newspaper), Bhopal

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Thanks for taking time to speak with me for my story. As always, you have some great and detailed insight on media and it's always good to get you involved in that dialogue.

I was thumbing through Bitch magazine this weekend and saw an article title that caught my attention. I took it home to read part two of your series "Triumph of the Shill," and I must say BRAVO!!! BRAVO!!! BRAVO!!! That was such a wonderfully written and well-researched piece-and not even I, the pop culture junkie that I am, could have had the strength to watch all those episodes of reality television and lived to tell about it, let alone write such a great piece on it.

Reading the article reminded me of what kind of hard core issues I too should be addressing in my work.

- Janice Rhoshalle Littlejohn Freelance entertainment journalist for Associated Press, Los Angeles Times, USA Today, Emmy, Essence, NPR and BlackVoices.com

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The existence of WIMN gives me peace of mind. It's unsettling to think of being a feminist without it; that would mean there would be no known organization to act as a women's watchdog of the gargantuan corporate media and news industries. And when sexist distortion and belittlement does happen, WIMN is out there-it's like a feminist media 911.

- Paula Kamen Journalist, author and playwright, Chicago, Ill.

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Congratulations on your comments in the excellent film "I Was a Teenage Feminist"! It is both entertaining and enlightening. It opens up a desperately needed dialogue in this world dominated by the corporate controlled media whose primary interest seems to be to maintain the status quo on every level: class, race and gender. You are extremely aware and articulate ...

- Roberta Pyzel Filmmaker, Act II Productions, Inc.

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Thanks to WIMN for your help with the girls media literacy project I'm planning. I found a ton of resources on the Jean Kilbourne web site. It was exactly what I was looking for, books, videos and web-site information. It is so nice to have Women In Media & News as a valuable resource. I am going on to produce an Image Campaign with young girls from the ages of 11 -15 about how media images make these girls feel. I think this will be great.

I also wanted to tell you that I was more than captivated at this year's Women and Media Convention when I saw your director, Jennifer Pozner, give her presentation about the "Unreality of Reality TV". Her work was abundantly researched and her video presentation was attention grabbing and thought provoking. She gave me plenty of food for fodder as she revealed the true agenda of reality television and how it hurts women mentally, spiritually and morally. The snippets that I saw only whet my appetite.

I have been a broadcast video journalist for the past 20 years and Ms. Pozner's presentation was a real eye opener for me. I actually thought that I knew a thing or two about television and now I know even more thanks to her intelligent and savvy approach to a topic that I had never heard discussed or not had even read about.

I am attempting to bring Ms. Pozner to Tampa, Florida so that she can bring the analysis of WIMN to members of the Ophelia Project Tampa Bay. The Ophelia Project-Tampa Bay's mission is to work toward an emotionally, physically and socially safe culture for all girls by developing and networking community resources, volunteers and programs. Our program reaches out to girls from the ages of 11 - 18, Ms. Pozner is reaching out to women of all ages and I highly recommend we pay attention to her message about the reality television "sneak attack" being waged on us by advertisers.

I love Jennifer's work - she and WIMN are inspirational!

- Mary Geraci Production Manager, TBCN 2001 Emmy Award Winner, "Women Documenting Cancer"

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Readers on WIMN's Journalism and Media Commentary

WIMN's director hits every nail on the head, never failing to pick up on a hot issue, and she does it in a funny, pointed, cogent way that makes her writing a delight to read. Jennifer Pozner is one of the preeminent media critics of the women's and progressive movements.

- Betsy Leondar-Wright Communications Director, United for a Fair Economy Boston, Mass.

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(About "Commander in Chic," WIMN's article on media coverage of female politicians) This topic has occupied my mind for years as president of the National Association for Female Executives. The way the media portrays powerful women in both the public and private sectors betrays long-held biases that continue to limit our choices. And this is the target of a new organization I am starting. I would enjoy hearing from the writer. Thank you.

- Betty Spence Ph.D., President, NAFE

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Thank you for your valuable contributions to the efforts of the Center for American Women and Politics (CAWP). There have been numerous occasions in which your writings have been an invaluable resource to us. Your work has been particularly useful in identifying and bringing to light some of the short-falls in the coverage of women and politics by the media.

- Gilda M. Morales Information Services Coordinator, Center for American Women and Politics, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, N.J.

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Loved your article in Ms. magazine (Fall 2004 feature on website). The pointed descriptions of reality show happenings lend their own weight as they are so plainly biased when displayed in the written format. Hoping this T.V. phase will end soon.

- Victoria Cichy Multimedia Designer/Producer, Illinois College of Optometry

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I am a senior at Northville High School. As a part of my AP English class curriculum, I am completing a research paper on the misrepresentation of women in the media. I found your article "The Unreal World" in the Fall 2004 edition of Ms. magazine both informative and inspiring. Thank you.

- Elizabeth Pertner

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I just finished reading your "Triumph of the Shill" article in Bitch magazine, and wanted to offer my congratulations! Your article was enraging, invigorating and inspiring - a fine addition to the "wake-up call" discourse we need to identify runaway advertising. Also, as a black female in the broadcast news industry, I'm very interested in learning more about Women in Media and News. Thank you.

- Pilara Brunson Somerset, N.J.

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I wanted to write and let you know that I read your essay in the book Catching a Wave: Reclaiming Feminism for the 21st Century, and found it eye-opening. Your assertion that "control of the media is the single most important issue of our time" is devastatingly accurate and could provide today's activist movements with a badly needed focus. The media controls reality by controlling our perception of reality, as you thoroughly illustrate in your essay "The Big Lie: False Feminist Death Syndrome, Profit, and the Media." Unless and until the media can be infiltrated and made to represent our truly diverse society, global citizens must learn to be constantly critical of the messages we receive.

I believe Women In Media & News is a necessary and important voice inspiring us to remain strong as critical consumers of popular culture. To help spread this voice, I forwarded "The Big Lie" to all of the communications professors on our campus with a recommendation to make it required reading. I am always relieved to see WIMN standing up for my point of view when I read articles such as the one in People magazine about the "controversy" over the Dove ad campaign featuring "regular" women. Just as I began screaming "the ad is for firming cream!," there was a quote from WIMN's director pointing out the same thing. Keep on providing the voice of reason and progress, WIMN!

- Jennifer Gilley Librarian, Penn State University

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Great job on "Missing In Action: Whatever Happened to the Gender Gap?" Explicit, powerful and very useful. And needed! We need to know we are not alone in our attitudes toward what is taking place in our country, and we would never know if we had to depend on the mainstream news and interpretations. WIMN has supplied us with information not found in our regular media. It has been of great value to learn what is really going on from such a trusted source. Thank you and The Women's Review for putting this out.

- Carol Catkins Cincinatti, Ohio

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To the director of WIMN: I look forward to your columns with great anticipation. You have such a unique way of writing about very important issues. You have pointed out the connections between sexism in the media and corporate ownership of the media. This has been a revelation to me. Your writing strikes a chord with me because you explain all the things that I had been suspecting. You do this with wit and brilliance. You are unafraid and your inspire me to be a person who questions and is unafraid to express my feelings about news coverage. I wish I could find some way to get you to speak to our young women who are still on campuses.

- Katherine C. Kelly Florida NOW Legislative Director/Democratic State Committeewoman, Palm Beach, Fla.

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Jennifer's passionate dedication to eliminating media bias against women is evident in every aspect of her work. She makes a powerful and persuasive case for better media coverage of women and the issues that affect them. Time and time again, Jennifer's writing provides hard evidence of the media bias that many women suspect exists but cannot themselves prove.

- Erica Fletcher Media Literacy Program Manager, Girls Inc., New York City, N.Y.

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Responses to WIMN's Multimedia Presentations

Jennifer Pozner is one of the best guests I have worked with during my 20-some years of teaching at this college. I find myself still thinking of her comments - not often does a conversation continue to provoke my thought and attention months later. I suspect Jennifer has such an effect on most people she encounters. Her energy and passion are palpable. She said things that have caused me to rethink my pedagogy. Jennifer spent only a few days here, but she left a positive and lasting impression. If I could, I would bring her back to this campus every year to conduct workshops on media, women's issues, and feminist activism.

- Brenda Haack Fineberg Associate Professor of Classics, Knox College

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Thank you for coming to Loyola University New Orleans to present on "Women in the Media." Your use of television clips, concrete examples, and your extensive knowledge about the topic at hand impressed both me and the Loyola community members that attended. You kept them engaged throughout, and your honesty and openness during the question and answer period helped make the event a success.

Please know that we will keep you in mind for all of our future events. I strongly believe you are a very professional speaker and an excellent choice for universities that are looking for a knowledgeable and entertaining speaker. I highly recommend you and thank you for helping us put on a triumphant event.

- Norma Miranda Chief of Staff, University Programming Board, Loyola University New Orleans

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Thank you for speaking at Vanderbilt University. As a Women's Studies minor, I found your talk to be informative and eye-opening. I have always regarded myself as being fairly well informed when it came to the news, as I read the New York Times and watch CNN daily. However, I never imagined the degree of sexism and bias that is present in the mass media. Your clear analysis of both print and televised media has given me the tools necessary to unpack the news as an informed consumer of the media.

Following your talk, I have frequently found myself cutting out stories in the paper and forwarding Internet articles to friends that show the media bias to which you opened my eyes. I have also written to CNN about their coverage of the war in Afghanistan. With the current crisis in American, I believe that being able to critically examine the media is now more important than ever. Following your recommendation, I now read as many as five different news sources from around the world each day.

Your lecture at Vanderbilt University has helped me as a Women's Studies student and a feminist, and also as a citizen. I would also like to thank you for taking the time to have lunch with me and the other members of the Women's Studies Club. Having the ability to ask questions and have a discussion with you in a small group was a wonderful opportunity for me. I wish I could say more to communicate to you precisely the impact you had on me. Please keep up the good work, and know that you made a difference in my life.

- Justin Keith Vanderbilt University, Nashville, Tenn.

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Thank you for a wonderful, educational and eye-opening lecture. We have received only positive feedback and we were more than pleased with the overall program. Everyone in that audience will never, never look at reality TV the same way again!

- Mary Sierra Campus Activities Specialist, Suffolk County Community College, New York

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I want to thank WIMN so much for giving such an outstanding presentation. I was on such a "high" after your talk. I haven't been that charged after a talk since watching Ralph Nader's Super Rallies before the 2000 election. Even though I may be the choir, I know your talk helped sensitize many of our students to consider media presentations of gender (as well as race and class) as one of the most significant indicators of inequality in our larger society. Also, your talk afforded an extended opportunity for faculty to discuss your presentation the following day in their classes. (I sure did)!

In addition to your sharp presentation style, your multi-level analysis and powerful illustrations provided an important opportunity for our students to make the connections between corporate controlled media, hegemonic masculinity, and the politics of exclusion as it relates to race, class, and gender. Simply put, your synthesis was clear, concise, entertaining, and hard hitting. Michael Moore has nothing on you!

I'd love to learn more about your research, and read your work so that I can get some ideas for next year. I'm quite sure we would love to have you speak again on another topic. Thanks again for your hard work, solid research, and activism.

- Danielle McGurrin Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology and Criminology Stonehill College, Easton, Mass.

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I wanted to thank you again for coming out to USC and sharing such an insightful and inspiring talk. I really enjoyed meeting you and am glad to know what great work you are doing. I am actually watching a Primetime Live Special right now with Diane Sawyer, "Women in Maximum Security Prisons." The content is already disturbing, but I am interested to see how it progresses. Consider me an advocate for WIMN.

- Tala Abbasi MBA Candidate, May 2006 USC Marshall School of Business

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The presentation WIMN's director, Jennifer Pozner, gave at Wheelock was fantastic. Though the audience was small, it was enthusiastic and attentive. Two things told me Jenn's presentation was effective: First, for the next few days, students who attended approached me to say that they loved the talk and wondered not only if we were going to have more presentations like that, but also if they could help in any way to make them happen. Second, in the question and answer session, students asked the majority of questions. This may seem like a small thing, but I've been to dozens of presentations at Wheelock in the last year and a half, and literally in every one, faculty and staff ask the questions and students sit silently. I don't know why.

But Jenn's presentation was completely different. I sense that students found her approachable; I know they found her subject matter provocative. But the questions flowed. We had to end the Q@A when a residence hall group came into the hall for a meeting, but there's no question we could have continued for at least another half hour. Indeed, we left the hall and one student stayed to talk with Jenn about an issue of concern to her at the college, and Jenn was incredibly gracious and thoughtful in drawing the student out, learning about her concern, and then addressing it carefully and strategically. This was above the call of duty, but Jenn was clearly engaged, and the student appreciated her advice a great deal.

Jenn and I talked at length prior to her talk about our students, their strengths and weaknesses, their political sensibilities, and so on. I think that as a result, Jenn made every effort to connect authentically with our audience, to be human, to be attentive to the expressions on their faces and to respond immediately and positively to what she saw so as to enable students to "get it." I was sincerely impressed. For Jenn, these presentations are not rote, and those present are not mere ciphers for some abstract notion of "audience." The audience is real; Jenn is real, and it is the real connection between them that makes Jenn's style work.

In short, I would not hesitate to invite Jenn and WIMN back, and I would recommend her to our colleges and groups without reservation.

- Brian Price Associate Vice President, Academic Affairs, Wheelock College

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Jennifer Pozner is such a profound media critic that someday I think there should be a panel discussion on the corporate media with her on one side and David Horowitz on the other. He'd better bring friends though, like PJ O'Rourke, Christopher Hitchens and Karl Rove. She'll kick his butt effortlessly. And smile the whole time, I bet.

- From comments at Indymedia Milwaukee, written by an attendee of WIMN's keynote presentation at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee's annual "Heroines and Hellions" women's history month conference

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Jennifer Pozner made an excellent presentation to my Barnard 'Summer in New York' class - I invited Pozner to discuss the concepts of media 'frames' and stereotypes, particularly those of race and gender. Pozner's presentation really helped my students understand these concepts, which they utilized throughout the rest of the course. Pozner's presentation, combined with my class' discussion, really helped me realign my teaching approach and helped my students reconsider their previously held beliefs. I was pleasantly surprised that the course (and Pozner's contribution to it) changed their perspectives so much. I would definitely ask Jennifer Pozner to present to my future courses!"

- Michele Hardesty Instructor, "Reading the Media," Barnard Pre-College program New York City, N.Y.

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Jennifer Pozner's insight and experience have been immensely helpful in my own work. Her hard-hitting analysis and depth of knowledge on media criticism struck me Ö In the early history of the politically focused Bluestockings Action Monthly forums, the media analysis session she participated in was one of our most exciting and best attended. Ms. Pozner was prepared, engaging and very informative. She brought specific examples and her own personal anecdotes to play, a style that made for an eagerly attentive crowd. Her sense of drama and irony, even in discussing such serious topics, was also very rousing.

- Heather Haddon Independent journalist and collective member Bluestockings Women's Bookstore New York City, N.Y.

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From time to time I find myself watching reality TV shows as a guilty pleasure. After seeing your presentation, I will be watching these shows with a much more critical eye in the future. Thanks a lot for sharing your insights into women and media. I would be very interested in hearing you speak on other media issues.

The resource list that you handed out seems very comprehensive. ... Did you happen to see the promos for this week's episode of The Bachelor? They went something like: "6 catty women ... let the catfight begin." I couldn't believe how bad it was. Of course the show portrayed the women as conniving back-stabbers who swoon over the personality-challenged bachelor.

It's interesting how critical I am about the show after hearing your presentation ...

- Paul Mayes Community member, Loudonville, N.Y.

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It was an absolute pleasure to have Jennifer Pozner here at the U. of O. Her lecture captivated the audience and was clearly well received by the listeners. Her multimedia presentation provided a clear, thorough, and critical perspective of the portrayal of women on TV. Thanks again.

- Cameron Levin University of Oregon

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My name is Kristina Nicastro, and I attended your lecture at Stonehill College this evening. ... I would like to say that it was an amazing presentation, and my friends and I felt that you creatively and effectively shed light on a vital issue that too often is left in the dark. Thank you very much.

- Kristina Nicastro Stonehill College

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Thank you again for you wonderful talk. Everyone in the audience seemed very engaged, as indicated by the great questions at the end of the program! I appreciate your commitment to the issues and wish you the best of luck!

- Lisa Sanders Gender Education Specialist, Women's Resources and Research Center, University of California at Davis

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(After this student attended WIMN's presentation on reality TV and gender roles, she decided to design a peer education program for her dorm on the same topic. This letter was received after WIMN helped her identify resources and topics she could use to help her fellow students critically analyze and challenge sexism in reality television.)

Dear Jennifer, Thank you again for all of your help and inspiration.

In our program we will be passing out articles (two of which are your two part series on product placement from Bitch magazine-which are quite impressive) and mentioning Women In Media & News.

Thank you again for your time and help. It is greatly appreciated.

- Nicole Fox University of California-Davis

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Approximately 85 people attended WIMN's multi-media presentation, "Bachelor Babes, Bridezillas & Husband-Hunting Harems: Decoding Reality TV's Twisted Fairy Tales" at the University of California-Davis. Anonymous evaluations forms were collected after the event. This is a sample of responses students gave to the question, "How will you apply what you gained from this program?":

- When watching these reality TV shows, I'll use this knowledge of what producers are really trying to do, to criticize it. I'll still watch sometimes (I don't watch much reality TV to begin with) but now I can understand more and have a broader perspective, and maybe even inform my friends. Very interesting!! Good job!

- I will be using this info as part of my women's studies class and to educate my friends on the reality of our world. Thank you!

- I won't feel that my body image is "irregular" as compared to what is portrayed in the media. Plus, this sheds a new light as to how "reality" TV is biased and scripted.

- I think this will motivate me to find out more about women's rights. I wasn't sure how strongly I felt about feminist theories or ideas, but now am starting to see why things need to be done, changed.

- Talking to friends about women's body myths and media representation of women.

- Be more critical when I watch TV.

- Apply it in the classes I TA for women's studies and ethnic studies.

- Confirms my loathing of reality TV. Gave me very good, precise arguments for people who think women have achieved gender equality.

- Understand what the real points and motives are of reality TV shows.

- I'll tell my friends what I learned so that they can be aware of the effects of these "reality" TV shows.

- I will be more aware about reality TV and the media about the portrayal of women. I will start to be more active about the rights of women.

- Try to inform friends/family of what they watch/read, teach their children, etc.

- Be more critical about media and society. Not support these shows, personal change, educate others.

- Allowed me to accept myself much more openly as far as body image goes. I am glad I am "overweight," at least I don't have to compete for an ugly guy! Great presentation.

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Responses to WIMN's Media Training Workshops

I couldn't quite place my finger on what was wrong with the way I was taught journalism until after hearing you speak. You really opened my eyes - I know that if I had heard you sooner in my academic career, I would have been inspired - instead of discouraged - to write stories from a truly unbiased perspective instead of from the patriarchal perspective I was taught as truth.

- Janet Syphan Attendee of WIMN's media workshop at "From Abortion to Reproductive Freedom: Transforming a Movement" conference

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Thank you so much for the amazing workshop today at the Sister Fund! My head is still spinning from the abundance of valuable information I learned from WIMN. I feel like I just completed a semester of graduate school in a four hour session! You were organized, articulate, thought-provoking and inspiring, and I feel really excited and inspired to move forward and cultivate press contacts. I feel that the things I learned today will have a huge, positive impact on viBe Theater Experience!

I really believe that the work you are doing is so valuable to the non-profit community. As the director of viBe Theater Experience, a non-profit community-based organization that empowers underserved teenage girls through theatermaking, I find that my time is stretched so thin trying to balance and juggle all my responsibilities to best serve the young women I work with.

Until the WIMN workshop, I had not given much thought to our presence in the media or the ways the media can help us. But I quickly learned how important it is to keep a positive, feminist presence in the media and I now feel a responsibility to push our agenda and advocate for the issues I believe in and the mission of my organization.

You helped me see how crucial and valuable a strong media campaign is and gave me the tools to launch it! I feel more confident in my ability to court press contacts and to communicate with reporters. With the training I got from one brief WIMN training workshop, I feel better equipped to get our message across.

Jennifer, you are providing a much needed resource to help us to increase awareness of our mission and better serve our communities. I feel fortunate to have had the opportunity to spend an afternoon with you and I fully endorse WIMN's work on behalf of non-profit organizations everywhere!

- Dana Edell Founder/ Co-Director, viBe Theater Experience

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This is Ben Chan, one of the KALCA interns you spoke to last week. I just wanted to thank you for imparting knowledge to us on dealing with the media.

I was inspired by our little discussion about Gwen Stefani and made some t-shirts about it. Check them out - cafepress.com/yellowpower.

- Ben Chan Attendee of media workshop for KALCA (Korean American League for Civic Action) Summer Leadership program

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