CEO, Civil Foundation
Vivian Schiller is a longtime executive at the intersection of journalism, media and technology. She currently heads the Civil Foundation, an independent not-for-profit committed to the sustainability of trustworthy journalism around the world. She is also advisor to Craig Newmark Philanthropies
Prior to joining Civil, Vivian held a number of executive roles in the media industry. She was the Global Chair of News at Twitter. In this role, she led the company’s strategy for news and partnership with journalism organizations and the news publishing ecosystem.
Before that Vivian was Senior VP & Chief Digital Office, NBC News where she led strategy and operations for the networks’ presence on the web, mobile, devices, and social media.
Prior to NBC, Schiller served as President and CEO of NPR, leading all of NPR's worldwide media operations. She was Senior Vice President and General Manager of NYTimes.com and Senior Vice President and General Manager of the Discovery Times Channel, a joint venture of The New York Times and Discovery Communications. Earlier in her career, Schiller was the head of CNN Productions, where she led CNN's long-form programming efforts. Documentaries and series produced under her auspices earned multiple honors, including three Peabody Awards, four Alfred I. DuPont-Columbia University Awards, and dozens of Emmys.
Schiller is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations; and a Director of the Scott Trust, which owns The Guardian.
After graduating at the Rotterdam Artschool, I took in 1993 my Masters Degree at the National Film and Television School in England. The Nipkow Program in Berlin granted me a fellowship in 2002/03.
With writer Arthur Japin I realized in 2001 my first feature Magonia (Golden Tulip Best Film IFF Istanbul, Circulo Precolombino Best Film in Bogota). My second feature, The Aviatrix of Kazbek (Commersant Press Prize IFF Moscow) closed the 2010 IFF Rotterdam.
Since 2003 I made several documentaries: Poetins Mama and Black Gold under Notecka Forest (Silver Wolf Competition IDFA), Transit Dubai (IDFA, Audience Award IFF Gdansk) and Stand By Your President (IDFA). I’m currently working on a new film in Abkhazia.
Since 2011 I cooperate with radiomaker Jeroen Stout on sound/new media projects. I coach (international) projects of young makers, give workshops and advise funds and organizations. I live and work between The Netherlands and Georgia since 1989.
Jon Lee Anderson
Jon Lee Anderson is a journalist, investigative reporter, and war correspondent and is presently a staff writer for The New Yorker. He began his career in the early 1980s, reporting on Central America’s civil wars for TIME magazine and other journals. As a New Yorker staff writer since 1998, he has covered numerous international conflicts, including those in Syria, Ukraine, Libya, Iraq, Afghanistan, Lebanon, Somalia, Sudan, Angola, Mali, Liberia, and Central African Republic. Before becoming a staff writer for the New Yorker, Anderson wrote for The New York Times. His work has also appeared in Harper’s, El Pais, Internazionale, The Financial Times, Guardian, The Sunday Times, TIME, The Nation, and other periodicals and journals.
David Owen co-founded IDEA in 2009 with his partner Angela Hill. The company began by sourcing rare vintage art and design reference books for the fashion industry, with retail spaces in Colette and Dover Street Market, London. Interest in IDEA grew rapidly via Instagram and the company turned to publishing with titles by photographers including Willy Vanderperre, Alasdair McLellan, Glen Luchford and brands like Palace Skateboards, Vetements, Stussy and Gucci. IDEA also began to produce merchandise including bags and hats and apparel. IDEA shirts and sweatshirts are now carried in 40 stores worldwide. IDEA also consults on Instagram and social media for a number of companies and runs a motion graphics studio. 2019 will see new books published by Self Service, Harmony Korine for Gucci, Purienne and Harley Weir.
Suketu Mehta is the New York-based author of ‘Maximum City: Bombay Lost and Found,’ which won the Kiriyama Prize and the Hutch Crossword Award, and was a finalist for the 2005 Pulitzer Prize, the Lettre Ulysses Prize, the
BBC4 Samuel Johnson Prize, and the Guardian First Book Award. He has won the Whiting Writers’ Award, the O. Henry Prize, and a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship for his fiction. Mehta’s work has been published in The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, National Geographic, Granta, Harper’s Magazine, Time, and Newsweek, and has been featured on NPR’s ‘Fresh Air’ and ‘All Things Considered.’
Mehta is an Associate Professor of Journalism at New York University. His book about global migration, ‘This Land is Their Land’, will be published by Farrar Straus & Giroux in June 2019. He is also working on a nonfiction book about immigrants in contemporary New York, for which he was awarded a Guggenheim fellowship. Mehta has written original screenplays for films, including ‘New York, I Love You’. Mehta was born in Calcutta and raised in Bombay and New York. He is a graduate of New York University and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop.
Cristian Lupşa is the founder and editor of DoR (Decât o Revistă), a quarterly magazine devoted to narrative journalism and telling the stories of modern day Romania. He also writes, lectures, and trains people on the transformational impact true stories can have on a culture still seeking its identity. Cristian graduated from the University of Bucharest in 2003, and then, in 2005, earned an MA in Journalism from the University of Missouri-Columbia, the world’s oldest journalism school. He returned to Romania in 2007, and joined Esquire Romania as a senior editor. In 2009, Cristian and a group of rebellious journalists started DoR, a magazine – though some would call it a movement – predicated on the idea that good nonfiction storytelling can change people and communities. In 2011, continuing the mission of DoR, they started The Power of Storytelling, an international storytelling conference which has grown to be the largest in the region. Cristian is also an alumni of Aspen Institute Romania’s Young Leaders program. He spent the 2013-2014 academic year as a fellow at the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University.
Joe started his career as a founder of a digital lab at HBO, where his independent directing and remixing career took off with a viral recap of every season of the Sopranos. In 2010 he gave a TED talk on storytelling, co-hosted Boing Boing TV on Virgin America airlines, sits on the programming board of The Moth, and is co-founder of the YouTube channel “CDZA”, a 300,000-subscriber channel which featured over 150 conservatory musicians in high concept music videos. As a one-man creative shop, he has created ideas and videos for such companies as Google, CFDA Fashion Awards, Interscope Records, BBC America, Comcast, ATT, and others.
Joe is the most ardent American fan of Georgia and unofficial ambassador. He has been to Georgia 16 times since 2006, can read and write kartuli, co-owned Piano (on Tabidze street), and currently co-owns DASTA. He once drove in a crappy car from England to Mongolia, plays classical piano, had a license plate that spelled “RIKROLL”, is an Italian dual citizen and is the 2007 International Pun Champion.
His critically-acclaimed biography, Bibi: The Turbulent Life and Times of Benjamin Netanyahu was published in 2018.