It’s difficult to say no to Karen Countryman-Roswurm, passionate founder and executive director for the Center for Combating Human Trafficking. So I rarely do.
Most recently, Karen talked to us about her plans to shake things up in 2020 by broadening the conversation to various forms of abuse, exploitation and trafficking. A private screening of the movie Bombshell would kick things off. Well, we immediately signed on, knowing Karen would want disruptive, head-turning marketing. Say no more.
A Double Entendre Designed to Turn Heads
Our creative urges people to Be the Bombshell. Instead of the blonde, curvaceous beauty that normally comes to mind when you hear “bombshell,” one icon features a black bomb with a lit fuse about to be amplified by a megaphone. The other superimposes a woman’s face over a bomb. Her direct gaze connects with the viewer while the tagline below – Ignite Your Power – incites action.
The screening at Wichita’s Warren Theater East on the afternoon of January 4 drew a full house and a robust, follow-up Q&A. Karen and cohost, mamafilm founder Lela Meadow-Conner, facilitated. Their insights about the “mechanisms of silence” designed to keep us quiet in the face of exploitation continue to fuel my thoughts.
Join the Conversation
Bombshell is in theaters nationwide now. It stars Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman, Margot Robbie and John Lithgow and focuses on the sexual-harassment lawsuit that brought down Fox News Chairman and CEO Roger Ailes. I highly recommend grabbing some friends, going to see it, then having your own discussion afterward.
Our Be the Bombshell creative will be featured throughout January, Human Trafficking Awareness Month. It will also be front and center on January 31 at the center’s sixth-annual anti-human trafficking conference held at the WSU Metroplex. Karen just announced that the keynote speaker will be Gretchen Carlson (played by Nicole Kidman in the movie). Time magazine named this former Stanford grad, Miss America, journalist, TV anchor and author as one of the 100 Most Influential People in the World.
Combatting Abuse, Power and Privilege
The conference will focus on creating long-lasting change for victims and those at risk. Subject-matter experts will share firsthand experiences of standing up to toxic culture. Presentations and breakout sessions will address everything from barriers to change to implementing trauma-informed care. Of the more than a dozen featured speakers, in addition to Gretchen Carlson, here are the three I most want to hear:
- Rafael Bautista, who is a survivor of labor trafficking and now advocates for survivors nationwide.
- Daniel Dye, who led the groundbreaking grand-jury investigations into the Pennsylvania Catholic Church’s sexual abuse of children and cover-up, uncovering more than 350 predatory priests and thousands of victims.
- Marisa Kwiatkowski, an award-winning USA Today investigative reporter who covers child abuse and neglect, poverty, elder abuse, human trafficking, domestic violence and mental-health services access.
Karen says this will be the center’s best conference yet. If you’re looking for a day that will galvanize and energize you, join in. Learn more or enroll.
WHAT Sixth Annual Anti-Human Trafficking Conference Context Matters: Confronting a Culture of Exploitation
WHEN January 31, 2020
WHERE Eugene Hughes Metropolitan Complex 5015 E. 29th Street N., Wichita, KS 67220