Loni Ding celebration NYC

Loni Ding

A celebration and memorial tribute to Loni Ding, 1931-2010, will be held on Monday, April 12, 2010 at the Brecht Forum at 451 West Street, between Bank and Bethune, New York City. It will start at 6:30 PM with a potluck dinner, screening of her work and video excerpts of the service and Chinatown Memorial March that happened in San Francisco on March 14. There will be an open forum for people to tell stories, poems and anecdotes about this wonderful woman. Loni’s partner, David Welsh, will be present along with many colleagues and former students.

Loni Ding (Isadora Quanehia Ding Welsh, or Ding Bick Lon) was an award-winning filmmaker as well as a teacher, people’s advocate and community organizer. She was one of the pioneers who launched the Neighborhood Arts Program of the San Francisco Art Commission. As a tireless advocate for social issue documentary, Loni played a central role in the creation of the National Asian American Telecommunications Association (now the Center for Asian American Media) and ITVS, as well as being a leading voice in the Association of Independent Video and Filmmakers. Her television programs have reached literally millions of school children and PBS audiences. Her ground-breaking films include the Color of Honor and Nisei Soldier, about the Japanese American soldier in World War II; the Bean Sprouts children’s series; and Ancestors in the Americas, a television series about the history of Asians in the Western hemisphere.

Loni inspired thousands of students in her 35 years of teaching and she brought a passionate social conscience to independent filmmaking. She was a leader who believed that media was a tool by which communities can realize the power that resides in them. We will miss her.

A fund has been established for an annual Loni Ding Award in Social Issue Documentary, organized by the Center for Asian American Media. Loni’s website is www.cetel.org. Some of her students have set up a new website rememberingloni.com that is growing day by day.

The East Coast Loni Ding Celebration is sponsored by: the Center for Media, Culture and History, NYU; Deep Dish TV; Third World Newsreel; Asian Cinevision; the Center for Asian American Media; Paper Tiger TV; National Black Programming Consortium: Scribe Video Center; the Black Producers Consortium; Women Make Movies; Downtown Community Television, and many individuals.

From the Celebration Committee: DeeDee Halleck, Barbara Abrash and J.T. Takagi

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