Designed to showcase today’s global Free Speech movement, American INSIGHT invites filmmakers to join this revolution by their submitting films to the Free Speech Film Festival. ONE Award-winning film is selected from six “Official Selections,” chosen from films submitted from around the world.

As they express themselves, or give a voice to the oppressed, American INSIGHT encourages filmmakers to consider what Free Speech, Human Rights, and the Rule of Law mean to them.

American INSIGHT’s annual Free Speech Film Festival is unique in several respects:

  • We select and promote only ONE Free Speech Award-winning film each year, giving stronger recognition throughout the next ten months to the topic, the winning film and filmmaker;
  • We focus exclusively on deepening the understanding of Free Speech, Human Rights, and the Rule of Law, with a goal of practicing, promoting and preserving their highest principles worldwide;

American INSIGHT’s Free Speech Award Ceremony provides an opportunity for the winning filmmaker to supplement their film with their personal story. Each year, the winning film is linked in perpetuity to American INSIGHT’s educational Free Speech Storyline, which traces the history of individuals who fought for their rights back to the signing of the English Magna Carta in 1215.


Panelists at previous Free Speech Award Ceremonies have included these artists, scholars, writers, civic leaders and politicians:

Bob Craig, Jazz Host, WRTI, Philadelphia, introduced “Smooth Jazz,” while hosting a Sunday morning show on WMGK in Boston

Karen Curry, Moderator; former NBC, CNN and BBC bureau chief; national director of communications for the American Civil Liberties Union; Executive Director of Drexel’s Rudman Institute for Entertainment Industry Studies (2010-2017)

Gregory Harvey, Esq, Senior Counsel at Montgomery McCracken, Philadelphia, awarded the Judge Learned Hand Human Relations Award of the American Jewish Committee

Abby Huntsman, American television personality and co-host of The Cycle on MSNBC; political commentator for ABC News in Washington, D.C., and Good Morning America in New York City

Mary Anne Huntsman, a classical pianist who has performed throughout Europe, the United States, and Asia

David Kilgour, human rights defender, author, former lawyer and Canadian politician, remains continuously vocal on many human rights violations around the world

Richard Negrin, Deputy Mayor of Administration and Coordination and Managing Director of the City of Philadelphia

Joseph Ohayon, Producer/ Director of  “Crossroads: Labor Pains of a New Worldview, “ is a filmmaker, writer and speaker based in Israel and New York

Michael Perlman, Producer/ Executive Producer of “Free China: The Courage to Believe,” is an Amnesty International official Artist For Amnesty

Tarquin Ramsay, Producer, Director, 2017 Free Speech Award-winning film “Free Speech Fear Free”

Reggie Shuford, Executive Director, ACLU Philadelphia

Anne-Marie Slaughter, President and CEO of New America; University Professor Emerita of Politics and International Affairs at Princeton University

Tanya Steinberg, President & CEO, International House Philadelphia; Treasurer, International Houses WorldWide

C.K. Williams, American poet, critic and translator who has won nearly every major poetry award

Ben Wizner, Director, American Civil Liberties Union’s Speech, Privacy, and Technology Project

Kean Wong, Producer/ Executive Producer “Free China: The Courage to Believe,” human rights activist, TV host, founder of Parigon Partners, a strategy and marketing consulting firm

Samuel Zhou, Deputy Director, Global Internet Freedom Consortium