Screen Actors Guild President Ken Howard, Secretary-Treasurer Amy Aquino, First Vice President Ned Vaughn, National Executive Director David White and special guests join entertainment industry officials including AFTRA President Roberta Reardon, DGA Secretary-Treasurer Gil Cates, and PGA Co-President Hawk Koch, Academy Award-winning Producer and JOINING FORCES Inter-Guild Task Force Coordinator Bruce Cohen; and Army Wives Creator Katherine Fugate for informative and inspirational panel discussion with First Lady Michelle Obama and military family members.
LOS ANGELES (JUNE 13, 2011) – The JOINING FORCES Inter-Guild Task Force of Screen Actors Guild, American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, Directors Guild of America, Producers Guild of America, and Writers Guild of America, West today hosts an important conversation with First Lady Michelle Obama and military family members to share inspirational stories of the service and sacrifice of active duty service men and women, veterans and the military families who serve alongside our soldiers.
Held at the Writers Guild Theater in Beverly Hills, today’s panel discussion is moderated by writer/director J. J. Abrams (Super 8, Fringe) and also features Army Wives creator Katherine Fugate whose landmark Lifetime drama series follows the lives of several fictional military families.
“Screen Actors Guild is honored to be a part of First Lady Michelle Obama's important national effort to recognize and salute the military family members who serve alongside their loved ones. Today's panel and our participation with AFTRA, DGA, PGA and WGA in the JOINING FORCES initiative brings a new dimension to SAG’s long history of support for, and engagement with, American service men and women,” said Screen Actors Guild National President Ken Howard.
Academy Award-winning producer Bruce Cohen (American Beauty, Milk) will welcome the panelists and guests and Fugate will announce that the Guild’s have joined forces to provide production support for the creation of filmed public service announcements (PSA’s). Fugate will also recognize Grammy Award-winning and Oscar-nominated songwriter Dianne Warren who is donating an original, unreleased song to JOINING FORCES for use in the PSA campaign.
“When the White House reached out to Hollywood to get involved, all five guilds answered the call to help present the heroic stories of several military families at today¹s event. I could not be prouder to be a part of what we hope will be a powerful and illuminating morning," said Cohen.
The event is part of Joining Forces: Taking Action to Serve America’s Military Families, an initiative created by the first lady and Jill Biden to support service members’ families. Other Guild members and dignitaries expected to attend include host committee members Dustin Lance Black (Milk, Big Love), Geoffrey Fletcher (Precious), Damon Lindelof (Lost, Star Trek) and WGAW President John Wells (ER, Southland), and actors LL Cool J, Elizabeth Banks, Chaz Bono, Lily Tomlin, Blair Underwood, Gulf War veteran Jon Huertas, Linda Cardellini and J. R. Martinez; The panel will discuss inspirational stories of military families and ways to share those stories through film, television and digital media.
About the JOINING FORCES Initiative
For more information about the First Lady and Dr. Jill Biden’s JOINING FORCES initiative visit http://www.whitehouse.gov/joiningforces
About the Inter-Guild Task Force and its Members
AFTRA, DGA, PGA, SAG and WGAW have joined forces in an Inter-Guild Task Force to bring awareness to the First Lady’s JOINING FORCES initiative that she launched with Dr. Jill Biden in April. The Inter-Guild Task Force will provide creative and production support for the JOINING FORCES initiative and will inform and inspire their memberships and the entertainment industry about the service of America’s military families.
For more information on SAG's 78-year history of support for our service men and women, visit our website at www.sag.org/history .