Sarah Kunstler

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Sarah Kunstler (born 1976) is a documentary filmmaker and lawyer.

Education[edit]

Kunstler graduated from Yale University with a BA in Photography in 1998, and from Columbia Law School with a JD in 2004.

Family[edit]

Sarah Kunstler is the daughter of left-wing radical lawyers William Kunstler and Margaret Ratner Kunstler and is the sister of filmmaker Emily Kunstler, Karin Kunstler Goldman and Jane Drazek.

Legal Work[edit]

Kunstler is the junior partner at The Law Office of Elizabeth M. Fink, a civil rights and criminal defense firm specializing in federal criminal defense for indigent defendants in the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York. From 2004-2010, she was a member of the Executive Committee of the New York City chapter of the National Lawyers Guild. Along with attorneys Elizabeth M. Fink and Jesse Berman, Kunstler represented Osama Awadallah, a Palestinian college student studying in the United States, who was arrested as a material witness in the days following the September 11, 2001 attacks and prosecuted for alleged perjury before the grand jury investigating the terrorist attacks. Awadallah was acquitted in November 2006. Ms. Kunstler also assisted with the post-conviction representation of Lynne Stewart, an attorney convicted of providing material support for terrorism in connection with her representation of Sheikh Omar Abdel-Rahman.

Film/Video Work[edit]

Together with her sister, Emily Kunstler, she is a co-founder and director of Off Center Media, a company that produces documentaries exposing injustices in the criminal justice system. At Off Center Media, Sarah has produced and directed a number of short documentaries, including Tulia, Texas: Scenes from the Drug War (2003), which won Best Documentary Short at the Woodstock Film Festival (she was instrumental in winning exoneration for 46 wrongfully-convicted people in the small town of Tulia, Texas); and Getting Through to the President (2004), which has aired on the Sundance Channel, Current TV, and Channel Thirteen/WNET.

In 2009, she completed a documentary about her father entitled William Kunstler: Disturbing the Universe. The film is a co-production of the Independent Television Service (ITVS) and aired on the award-winning PBS series P.O.V. in 2010. The film was an official selection of the 2009 Sundance Film Festival. It also received a 2008 grant from the Foundation for Jewish Culture's Lynn and Jules Kroll Fund for Jewish Documentary Film. Arthouse Films released the film theatrically in North America in 2009.

Sarah Kunstler and her sister Emily Kunstler were recipients of the L'Oreal Paris Women of Worth "Vision" Award at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival

Books[edit]

  • The Emerging Police State, edited by Sarah Kunstler

Articles[edit]

External links[edit]