Annabel Park (Photo by Mona T. Brooks)
Documentary film producers and director Annabel Park has brought on cheers and jeers as a founding member of The Coffee Party USA.
The Coffee Party Movement (http://CoffeePartyUSA.com) was created in response to the conservative Tea Party movement, which Park thought was repressive in inviting a variety of voices in a rational debate on serious issues of national concern.
The Coffee Party Movement, according to its founders, is designed to give voice to Americans that seek more cooperation in government – and with a belief that the federal government is not the enemy of the people, but rather should be the collective will of responsible citizens engaged in a participatory civic and democratic process.
The goal of the Coffee Party Movement is for voters and grassroots volunteers to support leaders that work toward positive solutions, and to hold accountable those who obstruct them. To succeed the movement does not require or encourage participants to adhere to preexisting ideologies and to act independently of political parties, corporations and political lobbying networks.
Park is a native of Seoul, South Korea and immigrated to America when she was nine years old with her family. She grew up in Texas and Maryland and studied philosophy at Boston University on a Melville Scholarship and political theory at Oxford University as a Marshall Scholar.
Park’s life experiences include working with inner city children, management consulting, writing and directing theater, and combining new media and political activism. She won The Cameron MacIntosh Award for her playwriting at Oxford University and was selected as a fellow for Film Independent’s Filmmaker Lab in 2005.
In 2007, Park was the national coordinator for the 121 Coalition, organizing a historic grassroots effort to successfully pass U.S. House Resolution 121, also known as the “comfort women” resolution, which will be the subject of her upcoming film Journey Into the Divide.
Tea Party blogs have labeled Park everything from a tool with an organization created by the New York Times, and even that she has subversive ties to North Korea. Other blogs claim that the Coffee Party was created with the intent of opposing the Tea Party even though its mission statement and guidelines state it was not.