Yoruba Richen is a documentary filmmaker who has directed and produced films in the U.S. and abroad, including Africa, South America, and Southeast Asia. Her latest film, “The New Black,” has received widespread support, including grants from ITVS, The Sundance Documentary Fund, Chicken & Egg, and the Jerome Foundation. Yoruba won the Creative Promise Award at Tribeca All Access in 2012 and was also a Sundance Producers’ Fellow. The film will air on PBS in 2014.
Yoruba’s previous film, “Promised Land,” received a Diverse Voices Co-Production fund award from the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and was broadcast on the Emmy Award-winning program POV in 2010. The film premiered at the Full Frame Documentary Festival and won the Fledgling Fund Award for Social Issue Documentary. It has screened at numerous festivals around the world.
In 2007, Yoruba won a Fulbright Award in filmmaking and traveled to Salvador, Brazil, where she began production on “Sisters of the Good Death,” a documentary about the oldest African women’s association in the Americas and the annual festival they hold celebrating the end of slavery. Prior to that, Yoruba was the co-producer of “Take it From Me,” a documentary exploring the effects of welfare reform on New York City women, which was broadcast on P.O.V in 2001.
She was also an associate producer for the investigative unit of ABC News as well as a producer for the independent news program Democracy Now. Yoruba is a 2012 Guggenheim Fellow. She received a B.A from Brown University and Masters in City Planning from the University of California, Berkeley.