Center for Media Justice
Betty Yu is the Network Organizer for the Center for Media Justice, where she coordinates the Media Action Grassroots Network (MAG-Net). At CMJ, she manages the national media justice network of over 130 grassroots community organizations, coordinates nine regional chapters, and curates the media justice learning community. She has over 15 years of community organizing, media justice, and filmmaking experience.
Prior to joining CMJ, Ms. Yu was the Director of Community Outreach and Media Services at the Manhattan Neighborhood Network (MNN), Manhattan's access television organization, where she oversaw the media making training programs and a Community Media Grants program. For several years, Betty was a lead organizer in the Save Public Access TV campaign in New York, organizing individuals and organizations around any legislation that threatened Community Access TV. Betty has served on the Board of Directors of the Alliance for Community Media (ACM). She was selected for the 2007 National Rockwood Fellowship in Media, Communications and Information Policy.
Betty sat on the Community Funding Board of the North Star Fund, a progressive foundation that funds grassroots social justice work for four years as a media/cultural worker representative. She served on the Board of Directors of the North Star Fund, as well. Prior to working at MNN, Betty was a full-time labor organizer working at the Chinese Staff and Workers’ Association (CSWA), a 30-year-old workers' center organizing Chinese immigrant workers to fight sweatshop conditions in New York City's Chinatown.
She served on the the Boards of the New York Film and Video Council, a 60-year-old organization serving the independent film and video community and Working Films, an organization that supports and provides outreach services for social-issued documentary films. Currently, Betty sits on the boards of Deep Dish TV and Third World Newsreel, two media organizations that nationally distributes radical videos and films.
Ms. Yu's organizing recognition include being a semi-finalist of the 2000 National Brick “Do Something” Award for community leadership and the recipient of the 1999 Union Square Award for grassroots activism. She has been recognized and featured in publications such as the Daily News, City Limits, Brooklyn Bridge, Stress Magazine, and Financial Times magazine for her contributions to labor and community organizing. She has appeared on news outlets that include ABC, FOX, CW, WB, and NY1. Betty has presented at dozens of local and national conferences on issues ranging from economic and racial justice organizing to media policy and grassroots media activism to media making 101.
Ms. Yu's published works include editing and writing for the Community Media Review, the national publication of the ACM that featured community media and activism. Betty co-wrote Media Justice Fund’s Scenario Study on the Future of Community Access Television, which was distributed nationally. Most recently, her article "Media Justice and the 99 Percent Movement" was published in Extra!, the publication of Fairness in Accuracy and Reporting (FAIR) and on commondreams.org.
Her short documentary film “Resilience,” which chronicles her mother, and her struggles as a garment worker fighting against sweatshop conditions, screened at various national and international film festivals including the renown Margaret Mead Film and Video Festival. Her other films include “Rising from Our Hardship: Hunger Strike for Our Health,” a film that follows the hunger strike of workers injured on the job protesting former New York Governor Pataki’s anti-worker policies. It was screened at festivals and community events. Ms. Yu's work has been exhibited, screened, and featured at the International Center of Photography, the Directors Guild of America, the Eastman Kodak Museum, and the Museum of Modern Art.