In the midst of a standing room only crowd during the Tom Joyner Family Reunion, Charter Communications partnered with TVOne and the Central Florida Urban League to premier Downsized, a family-friendly dramatic comedy staring Boris Kodjoe and Nicole Ari Parker. The story centers around a middle class Black family in transition, as the parents struggle to find themselves and their love for each other after twenty-five years of marriage following a teenage pregnancy and “shot gun” wedding.
Marva Johnson, Charter’s Regional Vice President of State Government Affairs helped kick off the premier, noting that “reflecting the vibrant diversity of the communities we serve is core to who Charter Communications is as a company and we strive every day to integrate diversity and inclusion into all aspects of our business.” Acknowledging the efforts of Charter’s Chief Diversity Officer Rhoda Crichlow, Johnson applauded the work of Charter’s workforce, of which 43% is multicultural, as being central to ensuring that the company is attuned to the needs of its diverse customer base.
In addition to its firm commitment to strengthening pillars of diversity and inclusion within the organization, Johnson affirmed that Charter has “long supported independent TV programmers and believe[s] it is vitally important to partner with multicultural networks to ensure that our customers have access to the diverse news, education and entertainment that they can relate to and want to watch.” In this vein, Charter “proudly partner[s] with TV One and other minority networks to bring diverse and independent programming to millions of our customers.”
The Downsized premier, hosted over Labor Day weekend, welcomed more than 250 attendees, of which about 100 gathered after the film to take part in a talk back session on Faith, Hope, and Trust: Lessons on Family, Life, and Love. The panel, which was moderated by Politic365’s Editor in Chief Kristal High, featured the film’s executive producer, Jubba Seyyid, Sr. Director, Original Programming, TV One, two cast members, Isaiah John & Racquel Bianca John, and Pastor Derrick L. McRae and his wife, First Lady Taja McRae of The Experience Christian Center in Orlando.
In addition to Charter’s commitment to diversity as demonstrated through its multicultural workforce and partnership with minority content creators and networks, Johnson highlighted the company’s efforts to closing the digital divide. “Charter offers Spectrum Internet Assist, our industry leading low-cost, high-speed broadband (30/4 Mbps) option to eligible low-income families and seniors across the 41 states we serve,” she said. By making high-speed internet access more affordable, Spectrum Assist is helping its customers create life changing opportunities “to improve access to education alternatives, to manage job searches and work related projects, to improve access to critical healthcare options, and other essential quality of life related activities.”
This event provided an opportunity for Charter to showcase both its work with diverse content creators and its commitment to increasing opportunities for equity and inclusion for diverse communities.
Downsized will be premier publicly on TVOne on September 16th at 9:00pm.