Conceived in an act of spiteful passion, Justin Jones has spent most of his life deconstructing ideas that you hold dear. He regrets three of them and will only tell you which if you ask nicely. Coming of age in America's krunkest era, Justin has made it his life's mission to propagate the philosophy that only haters talk shit. He wrote a book of poetry and a slew of comics that you’ve never heard of but will open a bridge to the 7th dimension if you ever read them all consecutively. Justin is a writer, producer, illustrator, educator, comedian, public speaker, and a regular practitioner of Black magic (“Black” referring to the heritage of the magic, not the Eurocentric judgments place on cosmic connections). He was voted the leader of the House of Ease© because Justin is a natural critical thinker and actually uses his watch. He doesn't trust you and will never let you know if he likes you, but you’re going to have a good time with the mystery. @BMFJones.
Shannon Joy Shird is a writer, producer, art muse, socialist socialite, ancient imp-spirit and international woman of mystique.
Born and raised in Baltimore, she holds a masters in international affairs from The New School and a bachelor's in history from Smith College.Shannon went to grad school as an excuse to move to New York City and pursue her real passion at the time: figuring out what she wants to do with her life. While studying international affairs at the grad level, Shannon, naturally, realized she wanted to work in the arts began working as an outreach specialist on her graduate professor's award-winning documentary film, Black and Cuba (2014). Since then, Shannon has worked on a number of documentaries, COMPLICIT (2017) & produced BLOOM a documentary short in post-production set in Negril, Jamaica.
Since 2014 Shannon has curated large- scale public arts projects, intimate gallery shows and produced educational and cultural events for organizations including Brooklyn Arts Council, MoCADA, The Andrew Freedman Home, Black Alliance for Just Immigration and ARTrepreneurship, which she also co-founded.
She's also organized mixed media cultural projects around race and gender justice and peace and nonproliferation in NYC, South Africa and Japan and is an active member of the Venceremos Brigade, the oldest Cuba solidarity organization in the world.
She currently wrote a short story that she and Darren adapted into BodyMore. She serves as the film's writer and executive producer and is Head of Operations for House of Ease.
Follow Shannon on Twitter & IG @MissShird.
Darren Mallett is a director, writer, producer born and raised in Brooklyn,NY and Tampa, FL. Inspired by the beauty of Black and Queer narratives across the African Diaspora, he believes that sharing authentic and transparent narratives, promotes a culture of empathy and compassion.
Darren is the director and co-writer of the award winning short, BodyMore (2018), Co-creator and Executive Producer of comedy web series, Brett and the City and produced /directed episodes for the Black Gotham Experience web series (2016)
Together he along with Producer, Empress Varnado started Black Brown and Digital (#bbdigital) , a series of events highlighting digital content creators of color. Darren is currently directing upcoming documentary short, BLOOM, following the lives of Queer men of color visiting and residing in Jamaica.
Darren is a graduate of the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City and directed/produced several pieces with the Plastic Flamingo Theater Company. Darren completed Gotham Writers Workshop for television writing in addition to sitcom and feature film writing at the The New School where he holds a BFA in Musical Theater.
Follow Darren on IG @DarrenMallett.
Burnest Griffin IV is a Brooklyn-based software engineer and artist with a background in building web services for a wide array of business types. After earning a bachelor’s in computer science at JHU, he joined a team to develop the portal for a loan repayment program run by HRSA. @BurnestThe4th.
Justine Gonzalez-Belay is a native Nuyorican, afro-latina for whom ease never came easy. She is a resourceful and creative problem-solver with a decade of professional experience in nonprofit management, youth development, and criminal justice advocacy. Justine is a natural connector who is inspired by storytelling and filmmaking. She is most proud of her role in producing a documentary series on hate crimes in America, Divided States, with ABC News, Lincoln Square Productions.