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About BraveMaker

BraveMaker exists to elevate brave voices for justice, diversity and inclusion.

Supporting the Artist's Calling

Artists and storytellers are prophets, creative forces in our world that speak to our need for justice, beauty, diversity, equality and spirituality. This is a painstakingly difficult calling. We are here to support and elevate these voices.

We curate and make provocative, life changing media that creates meaningful culture impacting experiences. We not only want to entertain but to incite dialogue, awareness and bravely shape our culture. We believe in the power of story relayed through films and we want to empower others who have these same aspirations.

Meet the Team

Founder & Executive Director

Tony Gapastione

He/Him
Tony is a husband, father and filmmaker. He founded BraveMaker as a non-profit film arts organization to mentor, support and elevate brave voices through film and create space for transforming community conversations. His life is all about telling stories and collaborating with storytellers. He and his wife, three daughters and their Labradoodle, Cubby, live in Redwood City. Want to become a BraveMaker donor? Contact him. Want to make a movie, host a film screening or learn to write? DM!
Live Show Co-host & Podcaster

Krystina Wray Jackson

She/He/They
Krystina is an artist living at the corner of four routinely marginalized communities; LGBT, Women, African Americans and Differently Abled. The former Ms. Wheelchair California (2018) is a passionate advocate and partner in Bay Area justice work. Krystina’s life took a dramatic turn when a Snowboard accident left her paralyzed from the chest down at 19. With her dreams of playing professional soccer crushed, she spent years in darkness consumed by sorrow and regret, but now she has taken up a mantle of advocacy and performing arts.
Head Programmer & Fest PR

Rhobertino

He/Him
Rhobertino is a Redwood City native and was recognized as “150 Faces of Our Community'' (Redwood City’s sesquicentennial celebration & acknowledgement) and as RWC Main Library Art Exhibition Jury Selection recipient. Soon after receiving American Advertising Federation’s Most Promising Minority Student Award and a BS Advertising/Graphic Design minor from SJSU, he worked in news media for Noticias Univision and NBC as a News Photographer/Video Editor. Rhobertino's passion for cinema led him to receive an AA Cinema Production degree from CCSF. He covers arts + entertainment, produces several shows and edits for NewsUpNOW. Rhobertino also enjoys writing film reviews. His love for the arts is what nourishes his heart, soul and purpose.
Producer & Fest Curator

Jessica Musgrave

She/Her
After earning her Bachelor’s Degree in Multimedia/Animation at Cal State East Bay in Hayward, Jessica quickly began her filmmaking journey gravitating toward the work of a producer. She has a true passion for bringing stories to life through film. Her experience also includes storyboarding, casting, animation, and production coordination/management. She currently produces with BraveMaker Media doing films, podcasts and film festivals. She resides in the Bay Area with her husband and daughter.
Cinematographer & Editor

Lupe Talakai

He/Him
Lupe previously worked for a non-profit program called, East Palo Alto Tennis & Tutoring (EPATT), at Stanford where he gained experience in video editing and produced promotional and educational content for the program. Now, his desire is to foster his own movie about his life as a Tongan-American living in East Palo Alto, CA. Lupe joined us in February of 2020 and became a video creator and editor for BraveMaker.
Marcellus, Information Technologist
Information Technologist

Marcellus

He/Him
Marcellus, is an adventurer, a continual learner, a bicyclist, an advocate for social impact, and an actor and filmmaker. He supports BraveMaker with information technology infrastructure to keep organized, and on set as an actor and crew member to bring our pictures with potential to life. His hometown is Richmond, CA, and you can catch him around cars, planes, good music, plant-based food, teaching financial literacy, and connecting with people. A few film favorites: Star Wars, Heat, Training Day, the Ozark series, and the Power series.
Fest Curator & Creative Developer

Rebekah Amosah

She/Her
When asked what she wanted to be when she grew up, Rebekah would say “A Renaissance woman.” Her professional and educational backgrounds include non-profit management, UNLEASH Innovation Lab Alumna, MoMA Modern Art course mentor, diplomas in marketing and business, BA of Arts in Fashion Design (specializing in sustainable design), and course work in art direction and concept development. Originally from Canada, Rebekah moved to the Bay Area from Spain a little over a year ago. After a chance meeting with Tony, she learned about BraveMaker and began volunteering right away, excited by the mission and the creative possibilities available within film. In her spare time she loves to travel, read, meditate and try out delicious vegan recipes. Most weekends you can find her spending time in nature with her husband, baby boy (Luca) and dog.
Animator

Fu Yang

She/Her
Fu Yang is a Taiwanese filmmaker who specializes in stop-motion and traditional animation.She draws for opening up communications, finding connections with people, and revealing her thoughts on subjects that matter to her. She lives in the SF Bay Area and creates award-winning independent shorts both on her personal and collaborative projects.She thrives on creating a believable world and invites the audience into the mood with performance, music, and lighting.
Animator

Tabitha Liu

She/Her
Tabitha Liu is an Asian American animator and enthusiast who enjoys working in traditional animation and filmmaking. With pipeline experience starting from preproduction all the way to post, she creates characters and tells their stories in worlds beyond imagination. She is an SF Bay Area native and is operating out of there, working on personal projects, learning new techniques, and more. A hallmark of her work is the usage of colors and cute appealing styles to tell stories inspired by her person that can relate to everyone.
Tech Consultant

Roberto Neira

He/Him
Originally from Panama, Roberto came to us with extensive tech and marketing knowledge from his work at Facebook. He and his wife Rebekah, have been on our team since the birth of BraveMaker and are proud new parents of Baby Luca!

Our Board of Directors

Crystal Cardeñas

She/Her
Crystal is a first-generation Mexican-American woman and rising leader who works at Facebook, Crystal is an organized, data-driven leader whose work has championed causes of education, mental health, and diversity in the arts. A catalyst for BraveMaker, her experience in leading ERG’s (Employee Resource Groups) has positioned our organization to excel in corporate settings.

Instagram: @crystalandmax

Ivan Reyes

He/Him
Ivan is board vice president and has been since April 2018. He is the executive director of the Redwood City Police Activities League (PAL) and a singer/songwriter and music producer in the Latino youth community on the Peninsula. Well acquainted with local arts and nonprofit communities, Ivan brings a wealth of donor knowledge, strategy and connections to BraveMaker, including connections to local high schools. Ivan was born and raised in Redwood City. 

Instagram: @ivan.reyes.martinez

Keren Southall

She/Her
Keren (board member and producer) is an American Actress, dancer, model, entrepreneur and mental health advocate. Born and raised in the Bay Area, she began her film and commercial acting career at a young age, with the opportunities of working with Pixar, Apple, Visa, Stanford, and Coca Cola. Keren’s passions for the arts are accompanied by her love for breaking the stigmas of mental health within her community. She's spent the past 5 years working with Pro Athletes, Fitness Enthusiasts, and Children of all ages to help push past their mental limitations to succeed in their physical accomplishments. She speaks on behalf of BraveMaker and uses her skills to curate and create our film work.

Instagram: @kerensouth | Email: Keren@bravemaker.com

Our Sponsors

Thank you to our Sponsors, Partners, and Grantors

Celebrating Diversity. Celebrating You.

BraveMaker celebrates diversity and aspires to help foster justice and inclusion across communities through guided discussions and powerful authentic storytelling.

The world needs us to share brave stories. Making, discussing and applying art can be one of the bravest acts of our lives. 

Are you a filmmaker? Do you have a brave story to tell? Let us help. The world needs a brave maker like you.

Do you love the arts and believe in their power to influence and shape culture? Great! So do we. We invite you to please donate today. Partner with us and invest in making brave films that lead to transforming conversations that effect change in our culture.

BraveMaker's mission is to invest in filmmakers and coach creators to tell their stories and gather audiences to engage in essential conversations and explore life's meaningful questions.

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