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Festival Co-Founder and Director 

Siamak Ghahremani is a prominent leader in the Iranian-American community, particularly in southern and northern California. He is an active and energetic cultural producer with a long list of innovative social, cultural, educational and charitable programs to his credit.

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Festival Co-Founder

Anthony Azizi began acting in plays as a young child at the Touchstone Theater in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, under artistic directors Bill and Bridget George. He started writing and staging his own plays for school and other public venues at the age of eight and continued in the arts throughout his schooling. 

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Board of Advisors

Maz Jobrani Maz Jobrani is a founding member of The Axis of Evil Comedy Tour, which aired on Comedy Central, had his own Showtime comedy special, Brown and Friendly, and has done stand-up comedy around the world, including the Middle East, where he performed in front of the King of Jordan. Maz starred in the films Friday After Next, 13 Going on 30, and The Interpreter. On TV, he was a regular on ABC's Knights of Prosperity and FOX's Life on a Stick.

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Board of Advisors

Shaun Toub's latest film as Uncle Iroh alongside Dev Patel and Cliff Curtis in M. Night Shyamalan's The Last Airbender, was aired in July 2010. He was also opposite Robert Downey Jr. in Paramount Pictures/Marvel Studios's box office hit Iron Man, directed by Jon Favreau, where he played the trusted friend and scientist YinSen, who saves Tony Stark's life.

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Board of Advisors

Homa Sarshar is a published author, award-winning journalist, writer, and media personality. Her latest book Sha'ban Jafari was the number one best seller Persian book in Iran and abroad in the year 2003. She founded the Center for Iranian Jewish Oral History (CIJOH) in Los Angeles, a nonprofit organization that gathered over 1,600 historically significant photographs and documents, and recorded over 120 oral interviews with elders and leaders of the community.

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Board of Advisors

Los Angeles based Fariborz Davoodian aka (David Diaan) studied radio, television, and journalism at the renowned University of Missouri. He is a respected Iranian-American entrepreneur, actor, writer, and filmmaker.

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Board of Advisors

After graduating from the American University of Paris with a B.A. in comparative literature, Roxana Rastegar came to Los Angeles to continue her education, receiving a M.A. in theater arts from Cal State LA. A talented artist, Roxana began working as a professional photographer before later joining the Avaz International Dance Company. As a member, she has performed all over the US, including such acclaimed venues as the Japan American Theater, the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion, and Royce Hall.

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Board of Advisors

Parisa Defaie, an esteemed television host, producer, actress and public speaker, has won widespread popularity among young filmmakers worldwide for her TV series about cinema, which ran on PBC Network. She has conducted high-profile TV interviews with entertainment notables like Academy Award President, Sidney Ganis, and other acclaimed personalities.

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Board of Advisors

Alaleh Kamran is a criminal defense attorney, who for the last 20 years has dedicated her practice to the defense of the constitution, humanitarian causes, and grass roots community efforts to intervene on behalf of the defenseless. Her criminal practice covers drug-related offenses, violent crimes such as murders, as well as white collar crimes, such as money laundering and structuring cases, on the state and federal levels.

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Board of Advisors

Bahar Sedarati, M.D. is a Board-Certified Doctor of Internal Medicine. A graduate from the Yale University-affiliated St. Mary's Hospital in Connecticut, Dr. Sedarati is passionate about raising awareness regarding heart disease in the community.

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