WHRO Public Media's Emerging Leaders Board is once again partnering with a national public media documentary company to create opportunities for community dialogues around crucial topics. Throughout 2021, the board will be working with Independent Lens, America’s home for independent documentary film, to provide Indie Lens Pop-Ups, “a neighborhood series that brings people together for film screenings and community-driven conversations.”

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the screening series has evolved to only virtual events using its digital viewing platform OVEE.

Through its roster of films this season, Indie Lens Pop-Up will spark conversations on pressing issues like widespread access to renewable energy, equality in the workplace, the criminal justice system, diversity in the arts, and the new meaning of the American Dream. This year's lineup includes six new documentaries that support diversity, equity, and inclusion, and ultimately a richer understanding of society today.

Register now for these virtual events:

IndieLens 9to5 1200

Thursday, January 28, 6:30 p.m. - 9to5: The Story of a Movement | Register to attend
Before the hit song or film, 9to5 was an inspiring movement for equality that encapsulated the spirit of both the women’s and labor movements of the 1970s.

IndieLens MrSoul 1200

Thursday, February 18, 6:30 p.m. - Mr. SOUL! | Register to attend
Before Oprah and Arsenio, there was Mr. SOUL! From 1968 to 1973, the public television variety show SOUL! offered an unfiltered, uncompromising celebration of Black literature, poetry, music, and politics, capturing a critical moment in culture whose impact continues to resonate today.


Thursday, March 18, 6:30 p.m. - Coded Bias | Register to attend
When MIT researcher Joy Buolamwini discovers that most facial-recognition software does not accurately identify darker-skinned faces, she delves into an investigation of widespread bias in algorithms that shapes the technology in our lives.


April 8, 2020, 6:30 p.m. - Philly D.A. | Register to attend
A groundbreaking documentary series embedded inside the long shot election and tumultuous first term of Larry Krasner, Philadelphia's unapologetic District Attorney, and his experiment to upend the criminal justice system from the inside out.


May 20, 6:30 p.m. - The Donut King | Register to attend
The Donut King tells the story of a Cambodian refugee who escaped genocide and overcame poverty to build a life for himself—and hundreds of other immigrant families—by baking America’s favorite pastry and building an unlikely multimillion-dollar empire of donut shops.

About Indie Lens Pop-Ups

These events will be premiere screenings of upcoming Independent Lens broadcasts to include local residents, leaders and organizations to discuss what matters most, from newsworthy topics and social issues, to family and community relationships.

As communities continue to find ways to come together and learn from one another, Indie Lens Pop-Up events provide a space to watch and discuss timely topics explored in its documentaries at hundreds of events hosted by partners across the nation. Since its inception in 2005, more than 6,500 Indie Lens Pop-Up events have brought an estimated 380,000 participants together to discuss issues that impact local communities.

Make friends, share stories and join the conversation--all from the comfort of your home.

For more info on our Emerging Leaders Board, visit whro.org/elb.