Crystal R. Emery is a dynamic producer, author and filmmaker known for producing socially-conscious storytelling on a variety of platforms that celebrate the triumph of the human spirit. She is also the founder and CEO of URU The Right To Be, Inc., a non-profit content production company that tackles social issues via film, theater, publishing, educational media and other arts-based initiatives. She is a member of the Producers’ Guild of America and New York Women in Film and Television, and she sits on the committee of 100Kin10’s Increasing Women’s Visibility in STEM.
After receiving her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Connecticut, Emery began her professional career in theater and film, with an apprenticeship with renowned theater director Lloyd Richards (The Piano Lesson) and polished her craft under the tutelage of film industry giant Bill Duke (A Rage in Harlem). She went on to attain her Masters in Media Studies from The New School for Public Engagement and has received numerous awards and accolades. In May 2018, she will be the commencement speaker and receive an honorary Doctorate of Letters from the University of Connecticut.
Emery is a sought-after author and motivational speaker. She was hailed as “inspiring,” by the Los Angeles Times and a “leader in science and technology” in Good Housekeeping’s “50 over 50; Women Who Are Changing the World.” Her writing has appeared in numerous publications, including TIME Magazine and The Huffington Post. To date, her published works include the first two volumes of the Little Man children’s book series, Against All Odds: Black Women in Medicine and the forthcoming Master Builders of the Modern World: Reimagining the Face of STEM. Her groundbreaking feature-length documentary, Black Women in Medicine, has now been seen by over 12 million viewers globally and screened in American embassies around the world from Ethiopia to Germany.
Emery conceived, designed and launched the innovative Changing the Face of STEM national educational initiative in 2015 which culminated in a Congressional forum in Washington D.C., attended by more than 300 STEM professionals, policy makers, educators, students and members of the media. Due to the huge success of Emery’s 2016 Diversity in STEM summit, the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine will host the second annual Changing the Face of STEM national forum on June 12, 2018 at the National Academy of Sciences. In October 2018, she will be the keynote speaker for the National Security Agency in Washington.
Triumphing over two chronic diseases as a quadriplegic, Emery continues to shape a successful personal and professional life. She attributes her breakthrough as a producer and writer, and her growth as a human being, to her participation in the classes taught by Guru Madeleine at The New School of Learning in New Rochelle, NY. Emery believes that faith and trust in a power greater than ourselves and perseverance is the road to success.