Thank you to Jack Willis for presenting the Streets of Greenwood (1964) and Lay My Burden Down (1966), as part of the Henry Hampton Minority Documentarian Film Series.
Jack Willis is a journalist, filmmaker, television producer and executive. His films and programs have won many awards including 7 Emmys, the George Polk Award for Investigative Journalism, and the First Amendment Award. His documentaries on race, poverty and other major social issues have been widely distributed in America and Europe. He is a Co-Founder and Sr. Vice President of Programming for Link TV, a Satellite channel currently in over 50 million American homes.
The fiftieth anniversary of the marches from Selma to Montgomery in support of African American voter registration and the Voting Rights Act, and the recent release of Ava DuVernay’s Hollywood film Selma have brought these landmark events to the consciousness of contemporary Americans. At the same time, recent events have triggered unprecedented media coverage of longtime systemic problems in the policing of African Americans. Willis’ work is as relevant and vital now as it was when the films debuted in the 1960s, and we were honored to have him present his work at Washington University.