If someone was to tell me that Aspen would become my next favorite place on Planet Earth I don’t think I would believe them. Perhaps it’s the Aspen trees that are interconnected at the roots that remind me of our interconnectedness to humanity. For the past 10 years I have been returning every year in the August to attend, speak, and showcase my films at AREDAY (American Renewable Energy Day) founded by Chip Comins and Sally Ranney.

This year I had the opportunity to speak again on a panel with legendary blues artist, Taj Mahal, Maranda Pleasant Founder, Origin Magazine, Stephanie Spear, Founder of Eco Watch, Diane Dehm, Founder Sustainability News Entertainment, and James Brundige, First Light Films. Coupled with the three-day action packed event, we organized a screening in conjunction with our grassroots non- profit partner Davi Nikent to screen the film in the little town of Carbondale, CO at the Crystal Theater. I always think to myself do these small screening of hundred or seventy people have any merit. In the evening, my friend Stephanie Speer who runs the Eco Watch online platform came up to me to share how she felt about the movie. She was truly inspired to see how I was able to connect the dots of what’s happening outside aka our environment is affecting us from the inside and how I was able to cultivate into a film. I mentioned to her my own inspiration of the film being, H to third power, an Einstein type epiphany being a healthy mind, a healthy heart and a healthy body leads to a healthy world. Thank you Stephanie for reconfirming our commitment to our planet. Something we should all cherish.

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It’s funny to look back and see the incidents in your life that affect us the most. I remember making the call back in 2009 into Fairfield Iowa and talking with the publicist of Maharishi School of Management Ken Chawkin. He talked about meditation, consciousness, and this guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi. I really had no idea what he was talking about, though I’m glad he mentioned that Mike Love and The Beach Boys were coming to town to play. This drew my attention. I mean who doesn’t love The Beach Boys. We ended up spending Labor Day weekend with my girlfriend now wife, Britta in Fairfield, Iowa for what became a ground breaking weekend for us. You can learn more about it in my new movie ROOTED in PEACE.

It’s always good in life to complete circles. This time I returned back to Fairfield, Iowa to unveil my new film, ROOTED in PEACE during the high holiday of Purunima. Adding to the mix, was the same guy I talked with 6 years ago was now leading the PR activities for our screening at the Sondheim Theatre. I also was fortunate to have a new friend and executive producer Joanna Plasfky to help me with the screening.

The event was action packed and our Q&A lasted for about 45 minutes. People laughed, cried, and even the mayor, Ed Malloy stood up pledging to bring a ROOTED in PEACE garden to the city of Fairfield. Thank you Ken Chawkin for taking the time to talk with me. Who would ever imagined what our labors will bring.

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This summer has been action packed with our little film had premiere screenings in Colorado, Iowa, and Massachusetts. But what a surprise when I received an email from my friend and festival booker Bruno Chattelin from Paris, France that the film was accepted into competition at the Montreal World Film festival.

When I arrived into Montreal two filmmakers from Vancouver, Canada greeted me. We had a wonderful evening of food and entertainment. The next day I was informed that there were 50 documentary films in world competition and that there were only two from America from roughly 3000 submissions. When the news was shared with me it gave me a deeper appreciation of the completive environment and the complexities of distribution along the festival circuit. We screened our film to a captive Montreal audience, though I was a bit saddened to see a woman leave the theatre because the film had not been subtitled into French. Coming soon I promise. I think the festival programmer Simon felt has badly as me as he offered to transcribe the film into French. Hopefully, will be coming to Paris soon!!


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Thursday September 20, 2015, Hollywood, CA. Who would ever imagined that the traditional Hollywood Film Festival would gain a conscience. I received the call this month from Festival Director, Brad Parks that the festival was interested in screening my new film ROOTED in PEACE. He mentioned to me that the festival had undergone reverse engineering of revamping its platform toward social action films. Though our new film hasn’t been commercially released we thought it would be perfect timing to unveil our new venture with the Captain Planet Foundation and our one Tree initiative due to the heightened awareness of our current climate crisis.

Captain Planet was created back in the 70’s as a comic hero who is created by humans with the five elements of air, water, fire, sky and earth with the intention of stopping pollution. One Tree is the social action platform which allows individuals to make a donation for the purpose of planting trees. The relationship was consummated back in April at Earth Day Texas when I had a chance to meet with my friend and Founder of The Captain Planet Foundation, Laura Turner Seydel. She had previewed my film back in Aspen at AREDAY (American Renewable Energy Day) and I had the opportunity to unveil my plan of using the film as a catalyst for taking back our planet One Tree At A Time.

How ironic forty years later that we still face the same environmental problems. Ted Turner vision of Captain Planet still has merit today and should be taken as a sign of the times. The Captain Planet mascot stole the show. As we were led onto the red carpet, people stopped to take their photo of Captain Planet mascot. For me, the big enjoyment came from watching the young kids learn about the character and have their photos taken. It was a superb red carpet event.

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For the past six years since I met my best friend and wife, Britta Reitman we go on a week to ten-day vacation. Last year we had the opportunity to go up the gold coast and explore the wonderful world of Oregon. This year, with the release of the film on the festival circuit we were invited to screen in the prestigious Martha’s Vineyard with our friend and curator of the Martha’s Vineyard Film society Richard Paradise. The screening was aligned with the local Peace center on the vineyard in a beautiful surround mix theatre environment.

I think what’s so wonderful is carving out the time to be with your loved one in nature. The highlight of the trip was two fold. One. On the last day we rented a jeep and drove out with my long time friend Chris Dizinno whom I met in Florence Italy with his girlfriend to go on the backside of the Island. We ate some wine and cheese and watched the sun down. I’ve never seen such a beautiful purple in my life. The second was leaving the vineyard. There’s always some form of drama that shows up in your life. As I was driving with Britta leaving the Island, apparently I drive thru a 20 mile zone going 40 miles. The city changed the sign within that 2 mile gap and I didn’t notice it. We drove about a mile for me to realize that there was a cop trying to pull me over. When he finally pulled me over and I showed him my license he asked me, why I didn’t pull over. I politely replied I didn’t see him. Our luggage was blocking the window. He then asked, “Did you not hear my siren”, I replied, “Sorry sir, we were listening to the radio and didn’t hear your siren.” I could see at this point he was getting angry. Within minutes he gave me back my license with a warning. I have to say I was super lucky as my California license had expired and I was planning to renew when I get home. I guess there are angels above us!

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Amherst, MA. March 20, 2015. Every one always talks about planting seeds and watching them grow. If someone was to tell me that me attending UMASS Amherst back in the early 90s’ was going to change my life forever I never would have believed them. I do recall my graduation ceremony listening to John Updike speech about the “war times’ of our country and the perils that were leading our country down a path of destruction. I even thought about my own tree planting initiative, The Giving Tree if it really had any impact on my college campus and reading Al Gore book, Earth in Balance.

As I reflect thirty years later we still have the same problems. Our industrialized super power nation is even more complex ridden with Congress passing trillion dollars in our war chest coupled with a climate crisis unfathomable to even manage.

Returning back to UMASS Amherst to screen my new film was certainly well appreciated. The introductory speech given by ……led me to believe that my own academic school had taken to root the importance of the message of the film and how that little seed planted 30 years ago had merit in today’s world. I was welcomed for an evening dinner at the Amherst Manor to the likes of the Head of the History Dept, The Communications Department and the Film Department, and my fellow friend and collaborator Chris Kilham who was among the number of luminaries interviewed in the film. The Q&A was fascinating how the students were drawn to the same messages of meditation, consciousness and learning of this new guru Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, who happened to also visit and speak in Amherst in the early 70’s. The part that really hit home for me was seeing firsthand the activism in the students face and the desire to be caretakers and stewards of the planet.