Panels and Conversations

SFJFF39's Panels and Conversations feature in-depth conversations with prominent voices in their respective communities. This is Personal: Intersectional Identity and the Women's March panel to follow This Is Personal Castro Threatre Screening. HerStory Panel & Conversation following the film What She Said: The Art of Pauline Kael. Both panels are FREE OF CHARGE and will take place around the corner from the Castro Theatre, at Spark Arts Gallery.

This is Personal: Intersectional Identity and the Women's March

This is Personal provokes the questions: how are women differently impacted by race, religion, sexual and gender identity and how did this play out in the Women's March following the 2016 election? How do people work together when they disagree? Join the conversation as a diverse panel of Jewish Women of Color lead the post-film conversation.

This is Personal: Intersectional Identity and the Women's March (Click to RSVP)

Sunday, July 21 | 3:30 PM
Spark Arts | 4229 18th Street, San Francisco
Panel and Conversation facilitated by Ilana Kaufman, Director of the Jews of Color Field Building Initiative

Ilana Kaufman

Ilana Kaufman is the Director of the Jews of Color Field Building Initiative. She has been featured in the Jewish Times of America and has published articles in The Forward, eJewish Philanthropy and The Foundation Review. Kaufman is also a nationally regarded thought leader on the importance of grappling at the intersection of Jewish commuinities, Jewish identity, and racial justice, and has been featured on NPR's All Things Considered and Code Switch

Confirmed Panelists- Rebekkah Scharf, Tonda Case, Leili Davari


Bekka ScharfRebekkah "Bekkah" Scharf is a graduate student at USF, earning her teaching credential and Master's in Education, through the San Francisco Teaching Residency Program. Bekkah is also a member of Bend the Arc's Racial Justice team, helping organize monthly Shabbat dinners for Jews of Color in the Bay Area. Bekkah was previously an outdoor science instructor at Alamo Elementary in San Francisco, a mentor with Wilderness Torah in Oakland, a Food Justice Fellow with Repair the World: Philadelphia, and the Regional Director of Sprout Up: Santa Cruz. 

Tonda CaseTonda Case is a Leadership Development professional, activist and educator. Oakland based, she is a Program Management Consultant at DIMENSIONS Inc, a Jewish Woman of Color founded and led Diversity & Equity consulting group in Boston. Her activism focuses on relationship building, advocacy and strategic planning in communities of color and in the Jews of Color community. Tonda currently serves on the board of Bend the Arc and is a proud member of Bend the Arc's Selah Leadership Training Cohort 14. She is a founding member of #JWOCmarching - a Jewish racial justice advocacy group who led the 2019 Women's March in Washington, DC. Tonda holds a BA in Ethnic Studies and an MBA, both from Mills College. Tonda is raising her daughters, Zoe and Chaya, to live - intentionally and abundantly - free.

leili davariLeili joined Bend the Arc as the Bay Area Regional Organizer in March 2016. During this time, Leili has supported local leaders to organize on issues including SB54, DREAM Act, Money Bail Reform Act, and electoral campaign in CA Congressional District 10 as well as supporting a local Jewish People of Color community. As a Mexican and Iranian Jewish cis woman from El Paso, TX, Leili has dedicated the last seven years to grassroots community organizing and supporting leaders build their own "people power." In the future, Leili looks forward to utilizing her passion and expertise in community organizing to help strengthen, support, and sustain Jewish People of Color.

HerStory: If She Can See It, She Can Be it

This event is the first of a continuing series. Supported by the San Francisco Jewish Women's Fund, a program of the Jewish Community Federation and Endowment Fund.

Head on over to Spark Arts Gallery following the film, What She Said: The Art of Pauline Kael to join in the post-film conversation on feminism and film criticism. How do issues of equity and inclusion impact the field? Is the film industry leading the charge for change?

panel & conversation
(Click to RSVP)

Sunday, July 28 | 1:45 PM
Spark Arts | 4229 18th Street, San Francisco

Confirmed Panelists Betsy Bozdech, Meredith Brody , Farida Gbadamosi & Ruthe Stein. Facilitated by Karen Davis.

Karen Davis is Senior Film Programmer for the Mill Valley Film Festival and Professor Emerita of Cinematic Arts at California State University, Monterey Bay. She is a recipient of two Fulbright awards for creative scholarship activity in Paris at the French National Film Academy (FEMIS) and the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Grant for her work in film and digital media. She has taught at Vassar College, UC Santa Cruz and at the University of California at Davis.  Her scholarly work has appeared in the journals "World Art", "Afterimage", and other publications. 

Betsy Bozdech is the executive editor of ratings and reviews at Common Sense Media, where she has worked since 2006. Her online editorial career also includes stints at,,, AOL's Digital City, and Netflix. While at Common Sense, Betsy has spoken at international conferences, served as a film festival panelist and juror, interviewed filmmakers and actors, and much more. She has bachelor's and master's degrees in journalism from Northwestern University and is a member of the Alliance of Women Film Journalists and a lifelong movie fan.

Faridah Gbadamosi is a freelance writer from New York City. Her favorite topics include pop culture, social media, intersectionalism, independent film and Korea dramas. If she had to make a list of movies to watch on her last day on Earth the list would include (but be not limited to) Black Orpheus, Miss Pettigrew Lives For a Day, and The Beauty Inside, which she feels sums her up pretty well. 

Meredith Brody, a lifelong cinephile, has worked in many aspects of the film business: as a film festival programmer and publicist, as a development executive, and as a screenwriter. She has written for every film magazine there is (and some that aren't anymore), including Cahiers du Cinema, Film Comment, Empire, and Premiere, as well as The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times. the Village Voice, and the LA Weekly. She has been a screener and juror for many film festivals, including Telluride, the AFI festival, the Ashland Independent Film Festival, Cartagena, and San Miguel de Allende/Guanajuato. She writes for the websites Indiewire,, and EatDrinkFilms.

Ruthe Stein is the movie correspondent for the San Francisco Chronicle. She has covered the film industry for the Chronicle for 20 years, writing reviews, celebrity profiles and industry trend stories. She regularly covered the Sundance Film Festival, the Toronto International Film Festival and the Academy Awards. In 2009 she created the Mostly British Film Festival in San Francisco, a celebration of cinema from the UK and beyond. She has a bachelor's and master's degree from Northwestern University.

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