Inge Meyring Smith - Focus of "One of the Miracles"
Inge was born in Germany and narrowly escaped the Holocaust.
In New York as a teen, living in poverty and able to read only German, Inge struggled to complete her education. While working as a secretary on Wall Street, she met and married Paul M. Smith. They later moved to Franklin, TN where they had three children.
In 1952, Inge started a kindergarten in the basement of her church and her love of teaching children flourished. Wishing to continue her education, Inge enrolled at Vanderbilt’s prestigious Peabody College. After earning her Masters degree in education, Inge served in the Appalachians and Mississippi in John F. Kennedy’s Head Start program where her life was threatened several times for bringing food and the love of learning to impoverished Mississippi black families.
In the midst of Head Start in 1969, Inge was given the opportunity to create a private elementary school, Harpeth Academy (currently the Battleground Academy Lower School in Franklin), which would eventually serve as a role model for several independent schools throughout the U.S. and Europe. With the motto, “Teach the child, not the subject,” Inge has inspired untold thousands of children with a love of learning that they otherwise might not have experienced.
As she approaches her late-80s, Inge hasn’t slowed. She continues to operate the preschool that she started over 60 years ago with the philosophy that each child is a gift from God, the value of which is not determined by race or social privilege, but by opportunity, which she feels is a basic right for all children throughout the globe.
Clay Stafford - Producer / Director / Executive Producer / Writer
Beginning his career as a child actor, award-winning author, filmmaker, and actor Clay Stafford has been involved in the entertainment and publishing industries for over three decades.
With over sixty produced scripts to his credit, Clay Stafford’s screenwriting work can now be found on numerous continents, in fourteen languages, and includes interactive media productions for the three major TV networks, a television movie, numerous children’s programs, documentaries, and a primetime network television series now in development at a major entertainment conglomerate.
His children’s books alone are available not only in the United States, but also in Canada, Germany, France, Japan, and the United Kingdom. These books were used as set dressing in the movie Must Love Dogs (2005) and have been translated into Polish and Russian. Five of his full-length staged murder mysteries have been produced; four have had Los Angeles premieres.
Clay Stafford’s experience as a director and producer includes a diverse mix of stage, film and tape, single- and multi-camera shoots, and multi-camera live broadcasts. He has directed internationally distributed dramas, how-to series, documentaries, live talk shows, commercials, game shows, theatrical productions, as well as, special programming and media events.
He has an M.F.A. from the University of Miami and has served as professor to several universities. He is a former employee of Universal Studios (Los Angeles) and has been an executive at PBS. Clay lives in Franklin, TN and is CEO of American Blackguard, Inc. A full list of his credits can be found at www.ClayStafford.com.
Phillip M. Lacy - Cinematographer / Editor
A filmmaker for over twenty years, Phillip has been behind-the-scenes of popular shows as well as obscure independent feature films. He has been involved in producing over a half-dozen television pilots and has had over thirty television scripts produced. He has directed nearly two-dozen films and television shows that have aired in the U.S. on the Dish Network and Fine Living Channel, as well as across Europe, Africa and Asia. Phillip has taught cinematography, film production, animation, and screenwriting in Miami as well as in the Midwest.
Ken Landers - Composer / Sound Mixer
Having always been interested in music and emerging computer technologies, Ken Landers decided at an early age that he wanted to become a composer. He studied music composition and arranging in college and pursued music and audio for film in graduate school. He worked in Nashville, TN for many years as a recording engineer and developed a reputation as a problem solver, able to fix otherwise unusable recordings. Ken has acquired a long list of credits in music and television, and taught music at the collegiate level.
Ken has served as Chief Engineer on location, recording live concerts with the MCMR Mobile Recording Trucks. Both remote and in the studio, Ken has worked with many artists including David Byrne, NSync, Trace Adkins, Wayne Newton, Alan Jackson, ZZ Top, Willie Nelson, and many others. Ken lives in Franklin, TN and is responsible for sound and music at American Blackguard, Inc. For more information on Ken, please visit his website at www.KenLanders.com.