WILD Stories Panel

WILD Stories:
10 Years of Impact & Inspiration

Evening Panel

Friday, April 5, 2024 at The Explorers Club

At the monumental milestone year, the 2024 festival featured a timely panel that looked back on the impact of the work in the stories brought to the screen and highlighted the progress for future endeavors of these WILD heroes.

WILD Stories Moderator

WILD Connection:

Christian Cooper
Birder, television host, producer, writer, and editor

Christian Cooper is the host and a consulting producer of the National Geographic TV series EXTRAORDINARY BIRDER and the author of the New York Times-bestselling memoir Better Living Through Birding. He serves as a vice president of New York City Audubon, where he advocates for greater, safer access to green spaces for all, with a focus on outreach to youth in underserved communities.

Learn more about Christian’s memoir here!

WILD Stories Panelists

WILD Connection:
Director of I AM RED (Finalist, 2014)
Director of DELTA DAWN (Best Short Film, 2015)

Pete McBride
Conservation photographer, filmmaker, writer and public speaker

Pete McBride is an award-winning conservation photographer, filmmaker, writer and public speaker who has worked on assignment in over 75 countries for the National Geographic Society, Smithsonian, Google, USAID and many others. He has presented on stages for The World Economic Forum, Nat Geo Live, Pixar and more. In 2016, McBride hiked the entire length of Grand Canyon National Park—over 750 miles without a trail and his subsequent book, Grand Canyon: Between River and Rim won a National Outdoor Book Award and his feature documentary, Into the Canyon, was nominated for an Emmy. His latest book, Seeing Silence, was named book of the year by Smithsonian Magazine and won the National Outdoor Book Award in 2022.

McBride resides in Old Town Basalt and found his artistic inspiration from the greatest art teachers he had – his mother “Moutie” who taught color and composition and his father “Pabo” who inspired with whimsy and wonder.

Learn more about Pete’s work here!

WILD Connection:
Featured in SHARK GIRL (Best Impact Film, 2015)

Madison Stewart
Founder, Project Hiu
Activist, filmmaker, tech diver

Madison Stewart has been raised in the ocean, starting life on a sailboat on the Great Barrier Reef, and leaving school at 14 to pursue underwater filmmaking.

Immediately finding a strong connection to the oceans most feared predator, the shark, her fascination around this animal grew and became her focus. Starring in her first documentary at 18, Shark girl followed her battle to save sharks from commercial fisheries in Australia. Madison went on to work in feature documentaries and TV productions pertaining to ocean conservation (BLUE 2017, Sharkwater Extinction 2018, Envoy: shark cull 2020). Befriending the world’s most infamous shark hunters, infiltrating and documenting the trades threatening sharks around the world, Madison’s campaigns have gained international recognition. Most recently she founded an initiative, Project Hiu, that offers an alternative income to shark fisherman in the largest shark catching nation on the planet: Indonesia.

Learn more about Madison’s work here!

WILD Connection:
Director of EXPOSURE (WILD Spirit Award, 2021)

Holly Morris
Director, writer, producer, and author

Director, writer and producer Holly Morris’s most recent documentary, EXPOSURE, tells the story of “ordinary” women from the Arab World and the West who team up to attempt a harrowing over-ice expedition to the North Pole. Her feature documentary, THE BABUSHKAS OF CHERNOBYL premiered at the LA Film Festival, and won the Jury Award for Directing – the first of 20 awards the film received. After its theatrical run, the film broadcast across the world. The story of the film is based on Morris’ print journalism and popular TED Talk, and is currently being adapted into a musical.

Morris’ other films include BEHIND CLOSED CHADORS (Iran), HOLY COW (India), MANA WAHINES (New Zealand) and PARADOX FOUND (Cuba), part of the “Adventure Divas” series, broadcast nationally on PBS and worldwide. The author of Adventure Divas: Searching the Globe for a New Kind of Heroine (Random House), and former editorial director of the book publishing company Seal Press, Morris’s print journalism has been featured in Outside, National Geographic Adventure, The Daily Telegraph, SLATE & the New York Times, and her film work has received many notable grants, including from the National Endowment for the Arts, The Redford Center, Fork Films, Chicken & Egg Pictures and the San Francisco Film Society. She is also a longtime host of the PBS travel series “Globe Trekker” and “Treks in a Wild World.”

Learn more about Holly’s production company and most recent film EXPOSURE!

WILD Connection:
Featured in TIGRE GENTE (Best Investigative Film, 2022)

Marcos Uzquiano
Chief of Protection, Biosphere Reserve at Beni Biological Station

Marcos Uzquiano is a native of San Buenaventura, Bolivia. He is a park ranger in the National Service of Protected Areas of Bolivia with more than eighteen years of experience. His work is currently focused on the Biosphere Reserve at Beni Biological Station. There, he serves as Chief of Protection and commands a group of rangers in charge of the protection and conservation of this protected area of the Bolivian Amazon, which is indigenous territory of the T’simane people.

Learn more about Marcos’s work here!