Sylvia is a filmmaker, impact strategist, and the Creative Director of Free Roaming Studios, a small production company dedicated to visual storytelling to inspire action. Her films have screened at festivals around the world including Aspen Shortsfest, Telluride Mountainfilm, the International Documentary Association awards, Raindance, Santa Barbara International Film Festival, the DC Environmental Film Festival, on the Atlantic Selects, and theatrically through Gathr Films. She is a Fulbright Scholar and a National Geographic Explorer.Sylvia is a filmmaker, impact strategist, and the Creative Director of Free Roaming Studios, a small production company dedicated to visual storytelling to inspire action. Her films have screened at festivals around the world including Aspen Shortsfest, Telluride Mountainfilm, the International Documentary Association awards, Raindance, Santa Barbara International Film Festival, the DC Environmental Film Festival, on the Atlantic Selects, and theatrically through Gathr Films. She is a Fulbright Scholar and a National Geographic Explorer.

Born in Bolivia and raised throughout Latin America, Sylvia is humanitarian at heart, and creative problem solver by nature. She focuses on making films that highlight solutions to some of the world’s most pressing problems and designing impact campaigns to facilitate action around important social and environmental issues. Sylvia made her first short film, Alagados, in the ghettos of Brazil with the support of a Fulbright grant. She then leveraged the film’s outreach campaign to found The Alagados Project, a nonprofit organization that provides college scholarships for first generation college students from the community where the film was made. Her first feature length documentary, Roaming Wild, about new solutions to the controversy over wild horses on public lands, screened at film festivals, US Congress, the Department of Interior, dozens of universities and civic institutions, and was released theatrically through Gathr Films.  Sylvia received a National Geographic Explorer grant for her upcoming short films called, Mermaids Against Plastic. She holds an MFA in Film and Media Arts from American University, a Certificate in International Development and Social Change from the Middlebury Institute for International Studies, and a BA in International Studies from Middlebury College. Sylvia has also taught film at the Corcoran College of Art + Design and the Santa Fe University of Art and Design.

Films by Sylvia Johnson

Refuge(e)

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Refuge(e) traces the incredible journey of two refugees who each fled violent threats to their lives in their home countries and presented themselves at the US border asking for political asylum, only to be incarcerated in for-profit prison for months on end without having committed any crime.