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Team

Jennifer Loren

Host and Executive Producer

Jennifer Loren is an Emmy-award winning journalist and filmmaker. Evolving from a reporter and producer to a documentarian and host, she has been in the television and video production business since 2001. Jennifer started her career in television news where she was an anchor, producer and investigative reporter. In 2014, she joined Cherokee Nation Businesses where she co-created the highly acclaimed documentary-style show Osiyo, Voices of the Cherokee People. Jennifer is the executive producer, host and many times a director of the short documentaries in the show, which is often called OsiyoTV. A proud citizen of the Cherokee Nation, Jennifer is humbled and thrilled to share her tribe’s stories with the world.

In 2019, Jennifer helped to create and roll out the Cherokee Nation Film Office. A first-of-its kind endeavor by a tribal nation, the film office hopes to build up the film industry in Northeastern Oklahoma and support and create jobs for Native American filmmakers and crew, among other initiatives. Also in 2019, she was named a Woman of the Year, Pinnacle Award winner by the Tulsa Mayor’s Commission on the Status of Women and the Tulsa YWCA.

Jennifer has been nominated for 26 Emmys and has been awarded six of those; five as Executive Producer and Host of Osiyo, Voices of the Cherokee People and one for investigative news coverage in 2012. Jennifer has won several AVA Digital Gold and Telly Awards, also for her work on OsiyoTV, and the show has been the recipient of several other awards, including the Association for Women in Communications’ 2016 and 2017 Clarion Awards. During her time in news, Jennifer won several awards for investigative reporting, including a Society of Environmental Journalists’ award and the prestigious Oklahoma Society of Professional Journalists’ First Amendment Award. While all of the accolades are validating, Jennifer says the most rewarding part of her job is working with and learning from citizens of the Cherokee Nation.

Jennifer’s favorite job of all is as a wife and mother. She has two daughters who keep her busy with after school activities and Jennifer volunteers with their PTA and school foundation, and serves on multiple other Boards in the Tulsa and Oklahoma communities.

Jennifer is a graduate of the Gaylord College of Journalism at the University of Oklahoma and an active member of the Native American Journalists Association and Society of Environmental Journalists.

To contact Jennifer, send an email to contact@osiyo.tv.


Jeremy Charles

Director

Jeremy Charles is a Cherokee visual artist based in Oklahoma. Jeremy spent 10 years as an Art Director before becoming an award winning Photographer – best known for creative portraits of musicians, public figures and athletes. He has now added video production to his expertise, forming Fire Thief Productions with filmmaker Sterlin Harjo in 2014.

“The opportunity to create a TV show focused on the Cherokee people is both an honor and a thrill for me as a Cherokee citizen. I think viewers will be excited by the interesting characters and memorable stories we’ll share with you each month.”

Jeremy grew up in the ranch lands of Oologah, Oklahoma, in the Cooweescoowee District of the Cherokee Nation. He now resides in Tulsa with his wife Jenny and two daughters.


Sterlin Harjo

Director

Sterlin Harjo belongs to the Seminole and Creek Nations and is a filmmaker and founding member of the all Native comedy group the 1491s.

Harjo studied painting at the University of Oklahoma before writing his first feature-length script. Later he studied screenwriting in the University of Oklahoma’s Film and Video Studies Program.

In 2004, Sterlin received the Annenberg Fellowship from the Sundance Institute to work on a two-year feature project. He is a United States Artists award recipient, and was the youngest of the 2006 class.

His feature film script, Four Sheets To The Wind, was developed under the guidance of industry veterans such as Robert Redford, Stanley Tucci, Joan Tewkesbury, Susan Shilliday, Frank Pierson, Walter Mosley, and Antonia Bird. It was one of 12 projects chosen from a pool of almost 2,500 based on the uniqueness of his voice, originality of story and promise of offering something poignant to American cinema. In 2007 the feature film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival.

His short film, Good Night Irene, premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2005 and played at festivals around the world. It received several awards including Special Jury Recognition at the Aspen Shorts Festival and Best Oklahoma Film at the Dead Center Film Festival in Oklahoma City.

Barking Water, Sterlin’s most recent film, premiered at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival and was part the New Directors/New Film series in New York City. It was also the only American film in the Venice Days section of the 2009 Venice Film Festival.

This May Be The Last Time, Harjo’s first documentary, premiered at the 2014 Sundance Film Festival, and is currently playing in the festival circuit.

Sterlin is a native of Holdenville, Oklahoma, and in addition to working on Osiyo, Voices of the Cherokee People, he is currently working on post production of his latest fictional film, Mekko.


Colleen Thurston

Production Specialist

Colleen Thurston is a media producer, educator, and film programmer from Tulsa, Oklahoma.

She holds a degree from the University of Arizona in Media Arts and Anthropology, and earned her Masters of Fine Arts in nonfiction filmmaking from Montana State University, where she also completed a graduate certificate in Native American Studies. Specializing in short form documentary production, she has worked for the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian and the Smithsonian Channel, as well as in freelance production positions for various other non governmental organizations. In 2015, Colleen helped establish the Tulsa American Film Festival, for which she currently serves as the Director of Programming. She is a member of the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma and a seventh generation Oklahoman. Colleen is proud to join the OsiyoTV team to help showcase Native voices and tell the stories of the Cherokee Nation.


Maggie Cunningham

Production Specialist

Maggie Cunningham is a producer for OsiyoTV from Oklahoma. She is a citizen of the Pawnee Nation.

Before joining the OsiyoTV team, Maggie worked in the museum and cultural heritage industry. Her previous roles included positions as an archivist and NAGPRA Coordinator. She also spent time as a project manager for several Native-owned consultation and media production firms. She saw firsthand the impact an Indigenous narrative can have on a community during her time researching at Te Papa Tongarewa, the national museum of Aotearoa (New Zealand). She continued to cultivate this focus in her years of cultural heritage work. Her experience working within Native communities here in Oklahoma has only solidified her drive to highlight Native stories. Maggie holds a bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College in Studio Art and Native American Studies. She earned her Master of Fine Arts in Museum Studies from New York University. She is thrilled and honored to tell the stories of the Cherokee Nation.

Maggie grew up in Oklahoma and Texas. She currently resides in Tulsa with her husband and young daughter.