I met Dr. Resa a dozen years ago at a National Speakers Association event for authors and speakers who were seeking to learn how to pitch their story to national news media. I was the national television news member on a panel of media professionals providing insight and coaching to the group. During my Q&A time Dr. Resa asked me to critique his pitch headline, “My Journey from Farmworker Boy to Pediatrician”.
I’ve covered hundreds of news stories touching on a wide variety of issues during the many years I spent working in national TV news. None of them prepared me for hearing what Dr. Resa had to overcome. How could any child migrant agriculture worker, let alone an abandoned one, go on to become a doctor? As he told me more about his journey, I realized his inspiring story must to be told to the widest audience possible. His life also shines a glaring spotlight on the flawed metrics our society uses (which influence all of us) to predict who will and will not be successful in life.
Dr. Resa’s story debunks the current narrative about Latinos, refugees and immigrants and especially migrant laborers in particular. Also while producing this film our eyes have been opened to the reality that his story is one among many similar success stories in the community. More than a few others with similar backgrounds have gone on to contribute mightily to our world (see high profile appearances). Why haven’t we heard their stories before now?
I passionately believe audience members of all ages, ethnicities and backgrounds will leave theaters better equipped to value the human potential in every person and energized with a certainty that they too can change their lives, their communities and the world for the better.
Jesse Gift | RAMON RISING Executive Producer, Writer/Director, Editor