Civil Discourse Through Storytelling

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March 31, 2021
6:00pm Central Time
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Join Arkansas PBS for a free virtual event "PBS American Portrait: Achieving Civil Discourse Through Storytelling." The event will feature a screening and discussion led by Clarice and Kwami Abdul-Bey highlighting the role personal stories play in civil discourse. A distinguished panel of guests will convene to discuss strategies to address difficult topics through civil discourse by using storytelling.


Clarice and Kwami Abdul-Bey - Arkansas Peace and Justice Memorial Movement


Craig D’Entrone - PBS American Portrait

Nicolas Cardena - StoryCorps

Hilary Trudell - The Yarn Storytelling

Ryan Norris - Americans for Prosperity

Amber Booth-McCoy - The Diversity Booth Inc

Katie Zakrzewski - Braver Angels Central Arkansas

Tom DeWolf - Coming to the Table

This screening and discussion event is in partnership with KUAR FM 89.1, Washitaw Foothills Youth Media Arts & Literacy Collective, and the Arkansas Peace and Justice Memorial Movement.

PBS American Portrait is an ongoing, evolving initiative that asks you, and people all over the country, to submit your individual stories by responding to one of a number of thought provoking prompts. Whether it’s joy or sorrow, triumph or hardship, family traditions you’ve followed for decades or just the chaos of the morning school run, we want to put together a picture of life as it’s really lived, today. It’s a chance for you to give us a glimpse into your life, and a chance for you to be heard.

This is a major opportunity to make history by creating a communal space where people can share, explore and listen. Everyone is welcome — the more stories we tell, the more we’ll
 see a real, complex, fascinating portrait of America.

Video Descriptions

Arkansas PBS / American Portrait INTRO

Civil Discourse and Storytelling - Clarice and Kwami Abdul-Bey March Vlog

In this month’s vlog with Clarice and Kwami Abdul-Bey, celebrate Women’s History Month, learn why having all voices represented in the conversation is so important, and find ways to share stories and create conversations through civil discourse. Read the blog post here: Clarice and Kwami are the co-directors of the Washitaw Foothills Youth Media Arts & Literacy Collective and co-convenors of the Arkansas Peace & Justice Memorial Movement. They have agreed to join the Arkansas PBS family as monthly vloggers that share their informed opinions on current events and PBS programs.

The Story of Us: A PBS American Portrait Story

Over the last year, PBS asked people across the country to share short stories about their lives in order to inspire a nationwide conversation about what it really means to be American today. In this half-hour special, over a hundred American voices share their story and what makes us all a part of the American story.

150 minutes


  • Casey Sanders

  • Co-Moderator Avatar
    Hilary Trudell, The Yarn


  • Panelist Avatar
    Craig D’Entrone--Executive Producer, RadicalMedia & Showrunner, PBS American Portrait


    As the multi-platform show runner on PBS American Portrait at RadicalMedia, Craig guides all aspects of the project, from digital content to social media, marketing, community-building and the broadcast documentary series. A graduate of the Columbia School of Journalism, he worked at The Wall Street Journal before turning to TV full-time. He helped create and produce the Emmy-winning documentary series, True Life, which ran for 19 years on MTV. As Chief Creative Officer at Punched in the Head Productions, he developed and produced broadcast series for History Channel, Bravo, Sundance Channel, Food Network, Investigation Discovery and MTV, as well as digital series for Sesame Workshop, Facebook, YouTube and Verizon. He’s also directed broadcast commercials and social campaigns for Coca-Cola, Jaguar, Huggies, Zyrtec and Stouffer’s.

  • Panelist Avatar
    Nicolas Cadena--Manager, Storycorps Mobile Tour Community Partnerships


    Manager, Storycorps Mobile Tour Community Partnerships Nicolas Cadena is a multi-disciplinary project manager and media-maker with a background in politic and cinema. He holds international work experience and strong networks in both Latin America and the U.S.. He is interested in managing socially-minded projects alongside a team of specialized creatives. Skills include: Media Production, Project Management, Community Outreach & Engagement, Training, Media Editing.

  • Panelist Avatar
    Tom DeWolf, Coming To The Table Program Co-Manager


    Coming To The Table Program Co-Manager Tom is an author, public speaker, trainer and workshop facilitator, and, since 2013, has served as Executive Director for Coming to the Table, a non-profit organization that provides leadership, resources, and a supportive environment for all who wish to acknowledge and heal wounds from racism that is rooted in the United States’ history of slavery.

  • Panelist Avatar
    Katie Zakrzewski


    Braver Angels Central Arkansas Co-Chair ASSOCIATE EDITOR Katie Zakrzewski is a recent graduate of the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. While a student, Katie earned her bachelor of arts in criminal justice and anthropology; she was also student body president; president of College Republicans at UA Little Rock and valedictorian. Katie is active in politics, working on environmental policy, LGBTQ+ rights, religious issues, the criminal justice system, and policy reform across the state. She frequently lobbies in Washington D.C. and is currently the CEO of a foreign policy blog, Realist Review. She hopes to someday run for Mayor of her hometown, North Little Rock.

  • Panelist Avatar
    Hilary Trudell


    The Yarn Storytelling Executive Producer Hilary Trudell (‘12) is the founder and leader of The Yarn, a storytelling venture based in Little Rock that uses the power of story to amplify voices, build understanding, and create space for human connection. Trudell, who also works as Director of Local Programming and Regional Outreach at the Clinton School, has produced many shows through The Yarn since its founding three years ago. The Yarn has helped individuals tell their stories on a range of topics, including motherhood, mental health, adoption, sexual assault, and LGBTQ support. Trudell and her team have coached nearly 200 people in efforts to help share their stories succinctly, effectively, and with impact.

  • Panelist Avatar
    Amber Booth-McCoy


    The Diversity Booth Founder. Amber Booth-McCoy is a proud native of Little Rock, Arkansas. She received dual bachelors in psychology and sociology from U of A Little Rock. Her career in the field of diversity and inclusion began in the UAMS Center for Diversity Affairs after accepting a position as a Senior Diversity Specialist. Currently, Mrs. Booth-McCoy is the Interim Director of Intercultural Education, in the UAMS Division for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DDEI)

  • Panelist Avatar
    Ryan Norris


    Arkansas Director for Americans for Prosperity, (AFP) is an organization of grassroots leaders who engage citizens in the name of limited government and free markets on the local, state and federal levels.

  • Panelist Avatar


  • Panelist Avatar
    Hilary Trudell, The Yarn


  • Panelist Avatar
    Craig D'Entrone


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The views and opinions expressed in this online screening are those of the presenters and participants, and do not necessarily reflect the views or policies of ITVS, public broadcasting, or any entities hosting the screening.