Shannon Shird is a writer, producer and cultural worker from Baltimore, MD living in Brooklyn, New York. Shannon’s work exists at the intersection of social justice and the arts. She has curated public art, gallery shows and produced educational events for many artistic organizations including Brooklyn Arts Council and 1Future where she’s organized mixed media cultural projects around race and gender justice and peace and nonproliferation in NYC, South Africa and Japan. Shannon has served as producer for award-winning, documentary films, Black and Cuba and COMPLICIT. She currently serves as producer for upcoming documentary short, Bloom: The Essential Journey and writer/producer for BodyMore a film adapted from her short story, “Unfinished” She holds a masters in international affairs from The New School and a bachelor's in history from Smith College.

Follow Shannon on Twitter & IG @MissShird.


Justin Jones is writer, political cartoonist, and stand-up comedian from Baltimore, MD. At the age of 20, Justin published his first book of poetry, Something in Sepia: An Insight into Cool. He’s written cultural commentary freelance for a number of publications over the years. A former editor of The Bohemian Monthly Magazine and Progressive Pupil for a number of years, Justin was the subject of a piece in The Urbanite Magazine as an outstanding freshman at The Johns Hopkins University where he holds his BA in political science and Africana Studies.

Since 2015, Justin has been an educator for New York Public Schools where he is finishing his Master of Education. Justin also holds an MFA in Creative Writing from The New School. He is currently writing and illustrating his first full length graphic novel entitled The Resistors.

Follow Justin on Twitter @BMFJones.


Darren Mallett is a writer, producer, director raised in Tampa, FL, currently living in Brooklyn, New York. He's co-creator and executive producer of comedy web series, Brett and the City and producer/director of the Black Gotham Experience web series. Together he along with producer, Empress Varnado started Black, Brown & Digital, a series of events highlighting content creators of color.

Darren is director of upcoming documentary short, Bloom: The Essential Journey, currently in post production, and will direct upcoming narrative short BodyMore. Darren is a graduate of the American Musical Dramatic Academy in New York City and is a director/producer with the Plastic Flamingo Theater Company. Darren completed Gotham Writers Workshop comedy writing in addition to comedy writing at The New School where he holds a BFA in theater.

Follow Darren on Instagram @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.

Burnest has participated in group exhibitions at Ouchi Gallery and is currently working on a business-social mobile app and collaborating on the Resistors graphic novel.

Follow Burnest on Instagram @BurnestThe4th.