HEIDI BASCH-HAROD | EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
Heidi Basch-Harod is the executive director of Women’s Voices Now (WVN). Heidi is responsible for the vision, strategy, and international fundraising efforts that sustain and grow WVN’s programs, locally and globally. She is the founding editor of WVN’s digital publication, The WVoice.
Heidi brings her experience in international human rights advocacy from her work with Tibetan Nuns Project, the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission of the U.S. Congress, and the Palestine-Israel Journal. She is a scholar of the modern history of the Middle East and North Africa, specializing in women’s rights movements of the region with a master’s degree from Tel Aviv University. In 2017, her master’s thesis, The Kurdish Women of Turkey: Building a Nation, Struggling for Gender Parity, became a published monograph (Moshe Dayan Center for Middle Eastern and African Studies). Heidi’s written works can also be found in several publications, including: Open Democracy, Palestine-Israel Journal, Tel Aviv Notes, Working Mother, The Berkeley Daily Planet, The WVoice and the edited volume, Kurdish Awakening: Nationbuilding in a Fragmented Homeland. She is a producer of the award-winning feature documentary Honor Diaries, and the highly-acclaimed short film, In Search of America, Inshallah.
Considering herself a practical idealist, Heidi’s commitment to her work derives from knowing she is part of the living chain of people who dream and work for a better world and the future generations who will continue to do so.
LEILA JARMAN | CREATIVE DIRECTOR
Leila Jarman is an award-winning filmmaker, producer, and multimedia artist and women’s rights activist. Born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, she completed her BA in Political Science with an emphasis on Middle Eastern Studies and philosophy in 2009 from Marymount Manhattan College in New York City. Her works have shown at hundreds of film festivals worldwide, in galleries, and museums including the TATE Britain, Ars Electronica and LACMA and have been featured on media outlets such as VICE, AFROPUNK, MTV, VH1, The Creator’s Project among others. Voice of the Valley, her 2009 documentary directorial debut, followed the professional careers of two self-made Muslim women journalists and their struggle to overcome social and cultural barriers to produce the only women run social, political, and economic radio program in Jordan. Since completing ‘Voice of the Valley’ Leila has worked on social impact documentary films tackling important social and human rights based issues in a producing and directorial capacity.
Leila has been involved in community organizing, education and activism since 2009, beginning with her work as a programmer and curriculum writer with New York based non-profit Arts Engine, Inc., a non-pforit that supports, promotes and produces independent media of consequence helping the public to access use independent media more effectively. in 2012 she was hired as Director of Programs at The Levantine Cultural Center (now The Markaz), a Los Angeles based non-profit which champions a greater understanding of the Middle East and North Africa by presenting artistic and educational programs that bridge political and religious divides. With The Levantine Center, Leila produced programs, curated screenings highlighting important films from Middle Eastern voices and ran the day to day operations of the center.
As Creative Director and Resident Filmmaker at WVN, Leila is responsible for the overall brand of the organization as well as being in charge of generating innovative ideas and new approaches to digital and in-person programs to engage activists, filmmakers and audiences both locally and globally. Leila directs WVN’s annual international online film festival, provides mentorship for filmmakers, produces branded WVN content and films, curates screenings, workshops and advocacy events in Los Angeles and abroad. In 2018, Leila headed WVN’s first ever Youth Media Training workshop in which she wrote the program curriculum and lead instruction resulting in the production of 4 short social impact films by the 19 first-time filmmaking students.
She speaks Farsi and Portuguese.
CLANCEY CORNELL | PARTNERSHIPS AND PROGRAMS MANAGER
SOIZIC PELLADEAU | DEVELOPMENT OFFICER
Soizic was born in Paris, France, and moved to Los Angeles in 2015. After discovering gender studies on her year abroad at UC Santa Barbara, she chose to dedicate her career to working towards gender equality. While completing the International Development & Political Science Master’s program at Sciences Po Lyon (France), Soizic worked for Women’s WorldWide Web, Europe’s first crowdfunding platform supporting women and girls’ access to education and healthcare globally. After graduating from her master’s program with a focus on the MENA region and gender equality in 2014, she worked in the Division for Gender Equality at UNESCO (Paris) for two years, where she supervised and updated monitoring & evaluation processes and contributed to two publications: Mobile Phones & Literacy, Empowerment in Women’s Hands and The State of Broadband 2015: Broadband as a Foundation for Sustainable Development.
After moving to Los Angeles, Soizic worked as a Program Officer for the Cultural Services of the French Embassy from 2016 to 2018. There, Soizic managed cross-departmental budgets, grantmaking, grantseeking, fundraising and reporting activities. She was also in charge of organizing professional programs and cultural events in the fields of film & TV, visual & performing arts, and education. Soizic also helped organize the Los Angeles Night of Ideas, which drew an audience of 1,300 people at Bergamot Station in January 2017. Soizic occasionally consults for UN Women, assisting with evaluation and performance analyses of UN agencies’ efforts to promote gender equality.
ROOPASHREE JEEVAJI | ENVOY
Roopashree Jeevaji was born in India and raised in Mumbai. At a young age, she trained in Bharata Natyam, a classical Indian dance from where her interest for acting developed. As a teenager, Jeevaji became the face of Bru Coffee, India’s largest coffee brand. Roopa attended college in the United States where she was awarded a scholarship at the Lee Strasberg Theater and Film Institute in Los Angeles after Anna Strasberg saw her performance on scene night. She was at the theater for three years. Roopa’s film debut was in the romantic comedy Wedding Crashers. In 2012, she competed against seven thousand actors and comedians from all over the country and was chosen to be among the top 22 to participate in the much acclaimed CBS Diversity Showcase held in Los Angeles. From then on, she has starred in other movies including the soon to be released Taco Shop along with Eric Roberts and Tyler Posey; In search of America, Inshallah, for which she received the Best Actress Award at the California Women’s Film Festival in 2014; and Disney’s Planes. She also starred in NBC’s Outsourced, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation, and appeared in the ABC’s daytime show General Hospital. In 2013, she was also chosen to be a part of the Producers Mentoring Program at Women In Film.