Meet the Dream, Girl Hosts: Johanna Zeilstra

The Dream, Girl movement is powered by an incredible group of trailblazers who are bringing the film to their communities, networks, companies, and living rooms — and Johanna Zeilstra led the way as our very first screening host. She hosted an event on June 2 in Westchester, New York, that kicked off our global screening tour in a wonderful way.

Johanna is a dreamer and a doer who represents the power of the Dream, Girl community. After graduating with an MBA, she worked in corporate strategy for a while before moving onto some entrepreneurial ventures. The first was co-founding an organization called GiveBack, an Oprah Winfrey-endorsed (we’re proud to be part of that club now, too!) platform that empowers companies and individuals to make strategic charitable donations. Next up, she co-launched an organization called Signature Leaders, a program that helps women move from senior-level to c-suite positions in Fortune 500 companies. Nowadays, she runs a women’s networking organization, takes on executive coaching clients, and launched The Women’s Debate, a campaign calling for a presidential debate on issues that affect women and girls, earlier this year.  

In other words, to say Johanna has been a force for good her entire career would be an understatement — and her Dream, Girl screening was no exception. She filled a theatre in Westchester with women and their daughters for a night of empowerment and inspiration, including a post-screening panel discussion with recognizable and influential local female business owners.

Two months later, we caught up with Johanna to reflect on what the experience meant to her!

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Dream 10 Profile: Sal Mastrocola

by Kylie Kendall 

 

When you start a business, the people closest to you inevitably become your co-founders. And when they’re musicians as talented as Sal Mastrocola, Dream, Girl director Erin Bagwell’s husband, they also become your in-house musical composer. Sal wrote 35 original compositions for the film’s soundtrack (10 that found their place in the film)!

 

Since the very beginning, when Dream, Girl was just an idea scribbled in Erin’s notebook, Sal has been one of the film’s biggest supporters. He’s a great example of what an ally looks like: someone who uses his own work to amplify the voices of women who need to be heard.

 

And he’s entrepreneurial in his own career, too, as the creator of the band No Nets. As a musician, Sal knows the hustle of self-promotion, networking, and, ultimately, selling a product that means something to the people who buy it. Here, we chatted with Sal about his musical writing process and his unending support for Erin and all female entrepreneurs.

 

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Dream 10 Profile: Stephanie Karlovits

by Kylie Kendall 

Stephanie Karlovits wakes up every day on a mission to empower the people around her. Whether it’s through fitness, holistic health, or self-discovery, Stephanie thrives on helping people be the best versions of themselves. And the way she does that is through EPIC Fitness + Lifestyle, a fitness and lifestyle center in Ottawa, Canada; her professional education company, Catalyst Conferences; and through business consulting.

 

Having studied psychology in school, Stephanie’s always approached health and fitness with a mind-first approach. In other words, you need to know why you want to feel better in and about your body before you can actually get there. That’s why EPIC Fitness + Lifestyle is more than a gym — it’s a hub where people to come together and celebrate themselves and the people in their community — everyone from six-year-olds to 93-year-olds, cancer patients and people with muscular dystrophy to every-day joes, moms of four, fellow entrepreneurs and professional athletes.

 

And as a female entrepreneur herself, Stephanie knows how desperately the world needs media that tells the stories of women like her, women who are building communities and movements of their own, and that’s why she’s a part of our Dream 10. This week, we chatted with Stephanie about all things entrepreneurship and girl-power!

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Erin & Komal Named to Oprah’s SuperSoul100 List!

#SuperSoul100

NEW YORK, NY – On August 4, 2016, Oprah Winfrey Network honored Dream, Girl producers and filmmakers, Erin Bagwell and Komal Minhas in the inaugural SuperSoul 100 list.  This list features extraordinary individuals that live life intentionally, create great social impact, and bring inspiration to others.OW Picture - Komal & Erin 1

Erin and Komal stand alongside other notable SuperSoul honorees like Ava Duvernay (Director of Oscar nominated film, Selma), Arianna Huffington (Founder of The Huffington Post), Sophia Bush (Actor, Director, Board of Directors on the Girl Project), Blake Mycoskie (Founder and Chief Shoe Giver of TOMS), and Amy Purdy (Paralympic medalist snowboarder) to name a few. The SuperSoul honorees span all ages, ethnic groups, industries, and faiths, but come together because of their inspirational stories.

Erin’s soul story began unexpectedly when she was sexually harassed in the workplace. She decided to take a leap of faith and quit her 9 to 5 to live out her dream of becoming a filmmaker, and bringing the stories of real women to the screen. She started a Kickstarter campaign to fund Dream, Girl and raised over $100,000 in 30 days. Komal saw the campaign and knew she had to be a part of it. She signed on to be a producer and to create an innovative distribution strategy that disrupts the way films are traditionally released.

Komal and Erin with their fellow #SuperSoul100 Creatives. Including Nate Parker, Prince EA, Zendaya, Amandla Stenberg, Ingrid Nilsen, India.Arie, Luvvie, Gina Rodriguez, Ava DuVernay, and more.

Business partners and fierce feminists, these two are ready to take on Hollywood’s gender gap one impactful film at a time. Dream, Girl held a private screening at The White House and sold out their world premiere at the Paris Theatre in NYC. Huffington Post named Dream, Girl the number one “Feminist Film To Watch” and Upworthy called it “the film every little girl (and grown up girl, too) should see.”

With the help of an all-female crew, Dream, Girl tells the stories of five women entrepreneurs from all different industries. Their mission with the film is to empower leaders across generations and highlight the power of the female economy. 

Erin and Komal know that any great cultural shift starts with taking women seriously and they hope to inspire women everywhere to own their power and follow their dreams.

Dream, Girl can be seen through hosted community screenings across the country, and Erin and Komal plan to spend the next year bringing the film and its message to events around the world, visit www.dreamgirlfilm.com/host to find out more. 

For more information about the SuperSoul100 list, go to http://www.supersoul.tv/supersoul-100Followers can participate and help spread the word via Facebook, Twitter and other social media outlets using the hashtags #dreamgirlfilm, and #SuperSoul100.

Please contact erin@dreamgirlfilm.com with any questions. For press photos, click here.

Dream 10 Profile: Kristin Gracie

by Kylie Kendall 
Someone once insulted Kristin Gracie by saying “you’re just a dreamer.” After that blow, it took her a while to understand the incredible power that comes with being a dreamer, and now that she has, she’s a force to be reckoned with.

When Kristin’s sister was diagnosed with terminal cancer about ten years ago, she took a leave of absence from her big-four accounting job to care for her. “Time was all that mattered,” Kristin says. “And that was really the first shift in me toward figuring out what my bigger purpose in life was.”

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Dream 10 Profile: Suzanne West

by Kylie Kendall 

Energy industry renegade, role model for a new (read: better) way to do business, and the first member of the Dream 10, Suzanne West is, in a word, unstoppable.

Suzanne is the founder and CEO of Imaginea Energy, an oil company that does everything it can possibly think of to make the extraction process environmentally friendly, pioneering new technologies and prioritizing people, planet and profit equally. The company also recognizes that innovation can only be born out of collaboration and open creativity, which is why it operates on a flat organizational model. On all fronts, Imaginea is simply revolutionary.

Suzanne herself is also a huge believer in the power of the female economy, and has been behind Dream, Girl since the very beginning (she’s interviewed in the film!). For her, becoming a member of the Dream 10 was a no-brainer. Here, we caught up with Suzanne to find out more about her life as a crazy-successful entrepreneur and her passion for a new model of leadership. 

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