Documenting Indigenous Activism and Remembering Richard Oakes

Thursday, October 19, 2023
Event Time 04:00 p.m. - 05:00 p.m. PT
Location LIB 286
Contact Email


A panel and talkback feat. Prof. Cristina Azocar, Brontë Wittpenn, Julie Johnson, and Alex Cherian

Moderated by Joey Orozco

In this panel and talkback, Prof. Cristina Azocar (Journalism), Brontë Wittpenn (SF Chronicle), Julie Johnson (SF Chronicle), and Alex Cherian (Bay Area Television Archive) will discuss Johnson and Wittpenn’s multimedia piece, Remembering Richard Oakes, as well as issues and considerations in news media’s coverage of indigenous issues and activism, both historic and modern. The panel discussion will be followed by a Q&A led by Joey Orozco (BECA/AIS).

Dr. Cristina L. Azocar is a citizen of the Upper Mattaponi Indian and is the author of News Media and the Indigenous Fight for Federal Recognition. Her research focuses on news coverage of Indigenous people. She served as a president of the Native American Journalists Association, directed the Center for Integration and Improvement of Journalism, was an editor of American Indian Issues for the Media Diversity Forum, and a board member of the Women’s Media Center. Dr. Azocar is a member of her Tribe’s Constitution Committee, is a committee member of the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communication and a former council member. She served on the Virginia Department of Education Standards of Learning External Review Committee and was a member of the advisory board of the American Native Press Archives. 

Brontë Wittpenn is a staff photographer at The San Francisco Chronicle. Brontë previously worked at the Austin American-Statesman, where she covered everything from the historic snowstorm that left much of Texas without power to intimate documentary projects, like the murder of a Ft. Hood soldier and the recovery of a burn victim. She is a graduate of the University of Montana, where she majored in journalism and international development studies. Brontë is a licensed drone pilot and a true multimedia journalist, equally skilled at still photography and video. Her work has been recognized by the National Press Photographers Association, Associated Press Managing Editors and the Hearst Journalism awards. She contributed video to the multimedia piece, “The Killing of Richard Oakes”.

Julie Johnson is a reporter with The Chronicle’s climate and environment team. Previously she worked as a staff writer at the Santa Rosa Press Democrat, where she had a leading role on the team awarded the 2018 Pulitzer in breaking news for coverage of 2017 wildfires.

Alex Cherian is the archivist and director of the Bay Area Television Archive, which preserves local TV newsfilm, documentaries and programs for researchers both domestic and international. For over 15 years, Alex has worked tirelessly to recover and document histories of activism and resistance in the archive. He previously worked at the North West Film Archive in Manchester, UK, where he acquired and preserved audiovisual collections from communities underrepresented in the archive. Alex is a longtime researcher and educator whose mentorship has helped a new generation of archivists learn to do the valuable work of preserving audiovisual histories.

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This event will count toward the Journalism Event requirement.


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