Cinema Without Borders have been offering Bridging the Borders Award for the last fourteen years. Bridging the Borders Award goes to the films that are most successful in bridging and connecting the people of our world closer together. Several internationally well-known filmmakers such as legendary Andrzej Wajda, Ari Folman, Terry George and Emanuele Crialese have received Bridging the Borders Award in the past years.
In February 2018 Go Energistics started to support Bridging The Borders Award that is now called GoE Bridging The Borders Award. Dedication and interest of GoE and its CEO, Adam B. Shepherd to the art and social justice issues helped us at Cinema Without Borders to expand the out rich of this award and offer it not only in US film festivals, but also internationally.
We had an interview with Adam B. Shepherd, President & CEO Go Energistics, LLC, in orders to explore the way both Cinema Without Borders and GoE are working on the future expansions of GoE Bridging The Borders Award.
Bijan Tehrani: Please tell us a bit about yourself and your interest in arts and particularly films.
Adam B. Shepherd: I am the President and CEO of Go Energistics (GoE), a Service-Disabled, Veteran-Owned Small Business (SDVOSB), which provides Initial Outfitting, Transition and Activation services to hospitals, research labs, and medical facilities undergoing business and building transformations. I founded this company after serving more than 23 years in the armed forces and today, I lead a team made up of about forty percent fellow Veterans. We are joined in our mission of “Serving Those Who Serve” by providing our services to benefit those who serve others, from the clinicians who provide life-saving healthcare, to the service men and women who visit our VA and DoD-affiliated projects as patients.
Service is something that has always meant a lot to me, and one of the greatest life lessons I’ve learned through my career in service is that we are always stronger together. From my time in the military to my time working in healthcare, I’ve seen how the act of coming together in support of our fellow man can impact the world at large. We don’t all have to agree on everything, but when we work to see the humanity in those who differ from us, we can break down our inherent biases and recognize the things we have in common. I appreciate films that, in addition to being well-made and entertaining, challenge the audience to see things from a perspective outside of their own by providing insight into other cultures and telling stories they wouldn’t ordinarily hear.
BT: We had a very interesting experience with you as our jury member for different film festivals, you always have a refreshing ideas about the films. How has this experience been for you, especially when you consider that running Go Energistics leaves you with almost no time.
AS: Working with Cinema Without Borders has been an incredibly rewarding experience for me on a personal level. Sponsoring the Bridging the Borders Award offers an incredible platform where I am able to indulge my love of films and recognize truly remarkable works of art, while spreading a positive message of unity.
BT: What motivated you to support the Bridging the Borders Award in the first place?
AS: It’s simple really. I have always been drawn to the idea of bringing people together to work toward a common purpose. I had been a fan of Cinema Without Borders for some time when I heard about the Bridging the Borders Award, recognizing films that successfully bridge and connect people around the world. I quickly saw how this goal is directly aligned with our GoE vision and mission and jumped at the chance to get involved.
BT: Since Go Energistics started its support of the Bridging the Borders Award, this award has achieved more popularity among filmmakers and festival organizers. At CWB, we believe working closely with GoE had made this possible, what do you think about this?
AS: It is an honor to be raising awareness and shining a spotlight on films that offer positivity and hope to their viewers. At GoE, we relish the opportunity to work with organizations like Cinema Without Borders, which share our passion for giving back and bringing people together. The idea that we have been able to contribute to the success of the GoE Bridging the Borders Award is truly humbling.
BT: In addition to U.S. festivals, the GoE Bridging the Borders Award is also offered abroad at the Lucas Film Festival in Germany and Veterans Film Festival in Australia. In 2020, it will be also offered at the Ramsgate International Film & TV Festival in the UK. Almost no independent award has had such a growth in such a short time. Please tell us your opinion about the GoE Bridging the Borders Award’s international presence.
AS: When I consider how the award’s message is growing internationally, I am pleased but not surprised. The notions of service, sacrifice and community are universal, and their importance can be understood in any language. No matter where we are in the world, regardless of our differing opinions on economic or political issues, we all really want the same things: to be able to live, work and support our families in a safe environment. The stories we recognize with the GoE Bridging the Borders Award demonstrate and embody this idea, and the popularity of this award abroad displays a growing worldly desire for these sorts of messages.
Being able to reach people around the world is an incredible gift, and a responsibility that I take very seriously. Understanding this, I am hopeful that we will continue to grow and spread this message on an even larger scale.
BT: Please tell us about Go Energistics and its humanitarian goals and your own experience in life as a Veteran and activist.
AS: The Go Energistics motto, “Serving Those Who Serve”, really does say it all. We consider it a privilege to serve those whose lives are dedicated to helping others. I am graced with an amazing team at GoE, made up of former healthcare providers and Veterans, many of whom have experienced combat-service related injuries. This puts us in the unique position of supporting facilities as not only the provider, but also the customer. As we work to create healing environments, we not only understand what is necessary to get the work done technically, but also what clinicians, patients and their families want out of their experiences. We strive to account for that in our project planning and execution. In this way, we are ideally suited to empower our Veterans to receive the best possible care.
BT: A new year has started. What message you have for the young filmmakers that work on social justice topics and hope to win the GoE Bridging the Borders Award in the future?
AS: Keep looking forward! If I’ve learned anything since teaming with Cinema Without Borders, it’s that art can truly make a difference, particularly when applied to the universal themes we recognize through the GoE Bridging the Borders Award. I look forward to seeing the great works of art that will be submitted throughout 2020.
Adam Shepherd, President and Chief Executive Officer of Go Energistics (GoE), has been a champion for social awareness and strong supporter of numerous non-profit organizations dedicated to healing. As the founder of (GoE) a Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business (SDVOSB), Adam is devoted to serving the men and women of our Nation’s military, Veterans, and their families by supporting the health care systems that serve them.
Adam’s dedication to serving stems from his 23-year career in the U.S. Army. Over the course of his military career, Adam travelled all over the world in support of several military campaigns and combat actions serving in numerous countries including Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Iraq. He not only witnessed but experienced first-hand, how people all over the world are eager to connect beyond their borders and despite their [perceived]differences. Continually moved by the spirit of people, Adam actively seeks out opportunities to encourage and enact positive social awareness and change.
Adam’s appreciation for the arts, especially cinema and its power to globally unite people, drives him to serve a higher purpose that goes beyond traditional borders. Adam’s philosophy and core belief that each of us can have a positive impact in our world are echoed through GoE’s sponsorship of the Bridging the Borders Award; which recognizes and highlights those who are most successful in bringing people of our world closer together through film.
Adam is an active Board Member for two charitable organizations – Yellow Ribbon Fund (which provides assistance to Veterans recovering from service-related injuries) and Living Proof Cancer Warriors (which provides financial support to patients during their battle against cancer). Adam has received numerous service awards including the Military Bronze Star and the Defense Meritorious Service Medal.
About Go Energistics
Go Energistics is dedicated to “Serving Those Who Serve”
Federal and Private Sector healthcare facilities form the back-bone of an industry focused on healing environments and serving the needs of their patients. As a trusted partner of choice, Go Energistics’ mission is to dramatically improve healthcare buildings and delivery systems to empower optimal performance and promote the best possible care. Whether it is planning services, design, procurement assistance, medical equipment installation, logistics support or “all-of-the-above,” Go Energistics is committed to “Building Solutions that FiT Your Healthcare Needs.”