Miss A Columnist

Melissa Curtin covers charity and style related events and loves to cover LA's best in beauty, fashion, and culture. She is an educator who recently returned to the classroom to motivate and inspire third graders at a private school in Pacific Palisades. In 2012, she launched an educational T-shirt line called Wear2learn. When she is not working out, hiking a canyon, or at the beach, she is writing. Her latest dream come true has been travel writing for Johnny Jet.

After teaching in the Maryland public school system for almost a decade, she left the conservative East Coast environment in Washington, DC for West Coast living. Eager for adventure, inner growth, and a new environment, she packed her car and took to the open road on her own landing in her new home - Hollywood, California. As a Connecticut Yankee at heart, she has now lived in Los Angeles for six years surrounded by the stars.

Melissa graduated from Gettysburg College with a double major in psychology and art history. Soon after, she earned a Master's Degree in education. Melissa traveled around the world on Semester at Sea, and earned a Fulbright Scholarship which enabled her to teach in England. A lust for travel and learning has fueled her globe trotting ever since. Some of her favorite destinations are Costa Rica, Thailand, Fiji, Morocco, Vietnam, Belgium, Italy, Sicily, Prague, Egypt, Australia, Greece, and Paris.

Los Angeles has won over her heart. She is constantly taking advantage of what LA LA Land has to offer - new boutiques and restaurants, finding great deals, discovering new hikes and beaches, music, and West Coast fashion.

36 Elephant And Trueheart Events Produce PSA Supporting LGBT Equality And Friendfactor Nonprofit

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(Photo Credit: Trueheart Events)

Equality is one of the most important and timely issues of this decade.  Amy Malin, Founder of Trueheart Events collaborated with her friends and colleagues, producer Denny Marte and director Koko Stambuk to produce an electric hip public service announcement (PSA) campaign in support of the Equality movement and the work that the non-profit Friendfactor is doing to ensure that the LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender) community is entitled to the same rights and freedoms as everyone else.

Jeweler to the stars Lauren Russell celebrated the launch of her LYON Fine Jewelry 2012 Collection in February 2012 with her Equality Bracelet to benefit the non-profit Friendfactor.  Friendfactor is the gay rights organization for straight supporters. Using both social media and innovative public education campaigns, Friendfactor enables everyone to take simple actions for historic results: ending the legal inequalities that people’s gay friends face in employment, housing, and marriage.

“This is one of the most important issues in our lifetime, to ensure that everyone is entitled to the same rights and freedoms.  The fact that in 2012 there are people who want to police other people’s love and commitment, is an embarrassment to the human race.  Standing up for equality for ALL is a human issue.  Being gay doesn’t make you any less of a human being, but discriminating against someone who is gay, well, there isn’t anything humane about that to me, “ said Amy Malin.  “I have many friends who are gay and to think that they can’t get married or have a family the way that I can is heartbreaking.  It is hard enough to find your soul mate, and then once you do, if you’re gay, you’re told that you can’t legally be recognized as a married couple, or as a family if you want to have children.  This blatant discrimination is a violation against the LGBT community’s same rights that heterosexual citizens have to enjoy life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.  So when I discussed this issue with my dear friend Denny Marte and his producing partner Koko Stambuk, we all decided to utilize our talents to take a stand for something we believe in,” continued Amy Malin.

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(Photo Credit: Trueheart Events)

With Denny’s background as a highly successful record executive and music manager and Koko’s acclaimed career as a GRAMMY nominated recording artist and songwriter, their new venture with their production company 36 Elephant is destined for success.  In recent years, Koko has stepped behind the camera to direct award winning music videos and commercial campaigns which have featured Lenny Kravitz and Kate Moss to name a few.  36 Elephant is currently in the process of raising funding for their first feature film.

The trio of Denny Marte, Koko Stambuk and Amy Malin, decided to pool their collective talents, experience and resources and donated their time to produce a public service announcement campaign in support of LGBT Equality and through it, to applaud the wonderful work that the non-profit Friendfactor has been doing.  Friendfactor has effectively harnessed the power of social media in the fight for Equality and was instrumental in helping the LGBT community win the right to marry in New York.

Koko Stambuk directed a beautiful, sexy and artsy piece depicting gay and straight men and women who all feel that love is love no matter what your sexual preference is.  The PSA’s theme is that we are all created equal and so we should all be treated equally. “I feel it is very important as an artist to connect with our consciousness, with love behind the creation, never fail to capture the energy in the pictures of the things around us that we forget sometimes, and again, always with Love. always,” said director “Koko” Stambuk.

You can view the EQUALITY PSA  here under EQUALITY. You may  just catch a glimpse of me in it from last February. We are all created equal.





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