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Winners 2008
  
MEDIA LITERACY EDUCATION

ELANA ROSEN
Founder and Executive Director
Just Think Foundation
San Francisco, California
Cable System: Comcast


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Elana Rosen"The importance of media in teaching and learning is paramount. Knowledge is increasingly the most valuable commodity in the world, and rich, relevant media will be the most powerful way to ensure that young people have profound experiences as they become active participants in their life-long learning environments."

A self-described "hope-aholic," Elana Yonah Rosen co-founded Just Think, a nonprofit media literacy education organization, in 1995 to bring to all young people from diverse communities the essential skills for healthy, responsible, independent lives in the 21st century. She's used media as the cornerstone of these efforts by teaching critical thinking skills and creative productions tools so students can understand and analyze media messages of all types. With these skills, young people produce their own media messages about issues that concern them, such as First Amendment rights, body image/nutrition, global warming, immigration, depression and suicide. In addition, they take on community leadership opportunities, and most importantly, improve their lives.

Just Think has become one of the few organizations in the country delivering on-the-ground programs and curriculum while performing rigorous academic studies in the media literacy education field. Rosen has been instrumental in Just Think, reaching over 7,500 students, teachers, parents and others through direct programs, more than 35,000 individuals through screenings, exhibits, fairs, and other community events, and an additional 4 million lives through unique media touches.

Rosen's belief that the core principles of media literacy education should be scaled was the impetus behind a merger of Just Think with One Economy Corporation, a growing global nonprofit organization that uses innovative approaches improving quality of life through access to quality media information to low-income people. With this merger, Rosen is integrating 21st century skills and knowledge into the U.S. and internationally based Digitial Connectors curricula, and launching the Public Internet Channel, a new online network for public purpose (www.pic.tv).