Jack Canfield Jack Canfield author. speaker. motivator.

Affectionately known as "America's #1 Success Coach," Jack Canfield is the originator of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series and a leading authority in the areas of self-esteem, achievement motivation, and peak performance. [www.jackcanfield.com]

 
Arianna Huffington Arianna Huffington political powerhouse. media mogul. author.

Arianna Huffington is the co-founder and Editor in Chief of the Huffington Post and the author of twelve books. [www.huffingtonpost.com]

 
Seth Godin Seth Godin author. speaker. linchpin.

Seth Godin is a prominent author, blogger and speaker. [www.squidoo.com/linchpin]

 
Krishna Kaur Krishna Kaur yogi. philanthropist. dynamic teacher.

Krishna Kaur is the founder of YOGA for Youth, a program that takes yoga, meditation, and stimulating discussions on the philosophy of yoga to urban youth. [www.yogaforyouth.org]

 
Norman Lear Norman Lear producer. philanthropist. tv legend.

Norman Lear has enjoyed a long career in television and film. He is also a political and social activist and philanthropist. [www.normanlear.com]

 
Leilani Münter Leilani Münter race car driver. activist. carbon free girl.

Leilani Münter is a professional race car driver and an environmental activist who uses her voice in the number one spectator sport in America as a catalyst for change. [www.leilanimunter.com]

 
Kevin Bales Kevin Bales Freedom Fighter. Philanthropist. Game Changer.

By going undercover to meet slaves and slaveholders, Kevin Bales exposed modern slavery's penetration into the global economy. He co-founded Free the Slaves, which has helped to liberate thousands of slaves. [www.freetheslaves.net]

 
Sophie Chiche Sophie Chiche mom. big dreamer. lady in red.

Sophie Chiche, lifebyme.com founder and curator, enjoys asking deep questions and living a life of meaning. Today she's launching Shape House, an urban sweat lodge, a place to melt away fears and fat. [www.shapehousela.com]

 
Mastin Kipp Mastin Kipp Writer. Entrepreneur. Daily Lover.

Entrepreneur and writer Mastin Kipp founded TheDailyLove.com, which merges pop culture with inspiration, and co-founded The Love Yourself Company, an apparel company that has started a global self-esteem movement. [www.TheDailyLove.com]

 
Liz Phair Liz Phair singer. musician. crier.

Liz Phair is an American singer-songwriter and guitarist. [www.lizphair.com]

 
Desmond Tutu Desmond Tutu archbishop. author. peaceful leader.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu is Chairman of The Elders, a group of world leaders who address some of the world's most pressing problems. He works energetically for human-rights and in his ministry. [www.tutu.org]

 
Zainab Salbi Zainab Salbi author. ceo. humanitarian.

Zainab Salbi is the founder and CEO of Women for Women International, a group dedicated to helping women survivors of war rebuild their lives. [www.womenforwomen.org]

 
Sean Stephenson Sean Stephenson speaker. psychotherapist. life embracer.

Despite his physical challenges, Sean Stephenson has taken a stand for a quality of life that has inspired millions of people around the world. He's a professional speaker, psychotherapist, and author. [www.timetostand.com]

 
Kia Miller Kia Miller yogi. meditator. teacher.

Kia Miller teaches Yoga at Yoga Works in Los Angeles, leads teacher trainings, and runs retreats and workshops on meditation, chakras, pranayam, and mantras, and other practices. [www.kiamiller.com]

 
Simon Mainwaring Simon Mainwaring creator. writer. idea geek.

Simon Mainwaring is an ex-Nike/Wieden creative, former Worldwide Creative Director at Motorola/Ogilvy, branding/advertising writer, author/speaker/blogger, Australian, idea geek. [www.simonmainwaring.com]

 
Shannon Bindler Shannon Bindler Strategist. Writer. Life Coach.

Shannon Bindler is a style editor, life coach, and the co-founder of Get Up Girl, an empowerment company that inspires women to shine. [www.getupgirl.com]

 
Mathieu Bitton Mathieu Bitton Designer. Art Director. Passionate Creator.

Grammy-nominated art director/designer/photographer Mathieu Bitton has designed over 450 CDs and movie posters. He's a renowned collector of and authority on black films and their soundtracks. [www.candytangerine.com]

 
Jorge Perez Jorge Perez Agent. Producer. Photography Enthusiast.

Opus Reps founder and agent-producer Jorge Perez travels the world producing photo shoots with great photographers and celebrities. He's also very involved with Meals on Wheels in Los Angeles. www.opusreps.com

 

community

Linda Goldstein Knowlton Linda Goldstein Knowlton director. producer. intersector.

Linda Goldstein Knowlton is a director/producer whose works have garnered praise from audiences around the world. She lives in Los Angeles with her daughter and husband. [www.somewherebetweenmovie.com]

Looking back over my life, I see that everything’s been about creating community, whether I’ve known it or not. A lot of that came from my Mom, who always let me know that community was important. “Look around,” she’d say. “Are there any kids feeling left out?”

Community is about gathering and about working for the common good. It’s one of the most basic human needs because it’s about being included and accepted. It’s about being safe.

I make movies for a living, which is a collaborative art form that I love. Every time I make a film I’m in a creative community with my team.

A few years ago, I was having second thoughts, asking myself if I’m really doing what I love. I asked my friends, “What do you think I’m good at?” Every one of them said, “You bring people together.” Until then, I hadn’t realized that about myself. That was a turning point for me. It reinspired and reinvigorated me in my work as a filmmaker – creating community and telling stories that hopefully bring people together.

We have to accept that we’re part of the human community, all on this earth together. People often seem compelled to differentiate themselves from others out of fear. That creates a fragile community, because community can’t sustain itself on fear. 

The whole point of making community is to come together, to find that we all have something in common, and to learn about each other. When I looked up the word “community” I discovered that it’s created from root words meaning “gift” and “with or together.” Community is about the gift of coming together. Learning that crystalized its importance for me.

When we were in New Zealand making the film Whale Rider, an old woman called Aunty Bumpy would come out every day and ask, “What can I do to help, dear?” I’d say, “Oh, just come and sit. It’s nice to have your company.” But on the third or fourth day, I realized that she really wanted to be part of the family, part of the community telling this story of her creation myth.

I’d been knitting a sweater for the grandfather to wear in the final scene, so I said, “You know what, I don’t much like knitting sleeves. I’ll knit the body of the sweater and you knit the sleeves. We’ll make this sweater together.” And we did. We sat in community with each other and created something together. That was one of my favorite things ever.

– Linda Goldstein Knowlton

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