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Selected Press Quotes:

"[An American Love Story] is expected to provoke a deeper national debate about race and its confounding complexities by exploring the daily lives of one interracial couple and their children. The debate got under way Wednesday night when about 100 East Bay residents gathered in Piedmont to preview a segment of the series.

The meeting was the third organized in Piedmont by the Television Race Initiative, which works as a partner with local communities to provoke discussion and problem-solving around issues of race. Bringing a national debate to the community level makes sense, said Barbara Ludlum, the series, executive producer and a Piedmont resident. "This is where we live, shop, go to the library, said Ludlum." You can see people want the opportunity to talk. And talk they did."
San Francisco Examiner, September 10, 1999

“POV is hoping ‘character-driven’ broadcasts such as ‘Family Name’ will draw blacks and whites beyond polite small talk or angry accusations, and into substantive dialogue and solving racial problems together. Confession can be good for the soul, but making lasting personal connections is even better...POV is trying to disprove the notion that television is a passive medium. Its ‘Talking Back’ and ‘High Impact Television’ campaigns invite feedback from viewers and hope to connect them with non-profit activist organizations. The new Television Race Initiative also is designed to build such community-based partnerships.”
Cincinnati Enquirer (editorial), September 15, 1998

“Through the Race Initiative, Channel 2 is tapping the power of television to reach a broad audience and stimulate public discussion around race issues. Among the many steps essential to improving race relations in America is honest, constructive dialog among citizens.”
Minneapolis Spokesman, October 8, 1998

“With a year of research and development under its belt, [TRI] was proposed to public television stations nationwide who were given the opportunity to be a part of this new effort.”
The Herald-Sun, September 15, 1998

“Plans for the [Television Race] Initiative are quite ambitious and include a three-year vision that incorporates independent film, outreach programs, and various media outlets such as public radio, all under the Television Race Initiative umbrella. What’s got people talking is Macky Alston’s attempt to engage people through a personal documentary in discussion over a painful past, including slavery, interracial blood ties, and, in the end, a virtual redefinition of race in America.”
The Independent, August/September 1998

“Piedmont’s black population is miniscule. But one night last week, there it was-a public gathering of people of many different racial and ethnic backgrounds watching Macky Alston’s moving film, ‘Family Name.’ [It] sparked plenty of conversations between the filmmaker and the audience, which, in addition to racial diversity, had a wide generational range, from young children to grandparents.”
San Francisco Examiner, September 16, 1998


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