Sista in the Brotherhood is a 20-minute, narrative, short film about a black tradeswoman who faces discrimination on a new job site and who must choose between making a stand or keeping her job.
The story follows an apprentice carpenter (sidony o'neal) who struggles to prove herself on her first day at a new job site. An outlier in a white, male-dominated workforce, she’s forced to navigate the crew’s reactions to her. When tensions arise, she receives inspiration from a surprising source to help her decide to either make a stand or risk never being recognized as the skilled worker she has become.
Sista has won multiple awards after screening at over 30 festivals around the country and now is being used as a training tool to help educate about the experience of working-class women. In particular, the film addresses the issues of retention, workplace culture, microaggressions, sexism, and racism, but also, much more.
The film was directed by filmmaker Dawn Jones Redstone and produced by Dr. Roberta Hunte. The original script was inspired by Dr. Hunte's doctoral thesis and partially based on Jones Redstone's experience as a union carpenter and longtime trainer at Oregon Tradeswomen, Inc. The film was made with an almost-all female crew, including 50 percent women of color.
Winner of the Best Short Film · Portland International Film Festival (2016) and Nominated for a BET Award (Awards TBA)
About the filmmaker
Dawn Jones Redstone (Director, Executive Producer, Writer) is an award-winning gay, Latina filmmaker living in Portland, Oregon who has been making films for almost 15 years. As an artist, she is fascinated by stories of personal transformation and the interior monologues that move us forward. Feminism and emotionality are strong threads running through her work. She is committed to creating films that help balance the representation of women and people of color both in front of and behind the camera. Dawn is the recipient of the MRG Foundation's 2016 Lilla Jewel Award and a journey-level carpenter from the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners. Learn more about her and her work at