Los Angeles, California | Film Festival


Deborah Attoinese

1 Campaigns | California, United States

Green Light

This campaign raised $11,523 for production. Follow the filmmaker to receive future updates on this project.

109 supporters | followers

Enter the amount you would like to pledge


A feature documentary about three generations of women in fire whose courageous stories center around the testimony of Ms. Kelly Martin, a 2017 Times Magazine Silence Breaker recipient regarding the hostile work environment and sexual harassment in the U.S. Forest Service.

In Partnership With

About The Project

  • The Story
  • Wishlist
  • Updates
  • The Team
  • Community

Mission Statement

Our female collective consists of powerful and passionate women in front of and behind the camera representing at least 2 sexual orientations, 3 generations of women & 4 nations of origin. Our diversity binds us to this documentary and opens the door for serious conversation and true social change.

The Story

On the heels of the #MeToo movement our National Parks and Forest Service was no different as they have been plagued with sexual harassment and gender bias towards women for decades.  One woman wrote: "In the years I served in the military, I never encountered such discrimination and harassment as I have working for the U.S. Forest Service."Then Kelly Marin, the current Fire Chief in Yosemite Park read

"Out There, No One Can Hear You Scream" an all too real expose about "the dangerous culture of male entitlement and sexual hostility hiding within Amercia's national parks and forests" written by Kathyrn Joyce and published in Huffington Post.  Kelly knew this was a game changer for her. Having buried and second guessed her own experiences for years,  she knew it was time to step up, knowing she would be putting her own career at risk.  She asked herself "If not me, who?  If not now, when?

                                                                                                     Photo: WONDERCAMP/REI)


The film will intercut with the stories of three women, each from a different generation and different place in her career. Each woman represents each other in different stages of life. Their stories provide a cross-generational metaphor and point-of-view as we look at the history of sexual harassment and the #MeToo movement from the past, present and future. 


Kelly knew she was not alone. She reached out to a group of female colleagues who all had their own stories to tell.  The women referred to their weekly meetings as The Wine Club in order to protect themselves from retaliation.  The results was a full-on report detailing numerous allegations of sexual assault, harassment and discrimination in both Yosemite National Park and The Grand Canyon. Cover up and denial ensued. In order to be taken seriously the women realized they needed to get their story out of the park.

(Not images of the actual Wine Club)



On September 22, 2016 Kelly Martin testified before the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. "I am motivated by a desire to focus scrutiny on the culture that is created when leaders of our organization fail to take action and hold perpetrators accountable for their actions."


YOU ARE NOT ALONE  More brave women continue to come forward to share their stories-from left to right: Darla Bush, Darlene Hall, Michaela Myers, Jonel Wadoner, Kelly Martin, Cheyenne Szydlo, Abby Bolt, Alicia Dabney, Denice Rice   (Photo: PBS, Cspan)



Watch Eleanor Norton Holmes (D-District of Columbia) ask Mike Reynolds, National Park Service Operations Deputy Director if he was aware of  a sixteen year old report (back in 2000) that was based on similar sexual harassment and discrimination complaints before the same committee sixteen years later (2016). The outcome of the 2000 hearings was thirty recommendations of which ZERO were implemented or followed up on.



When I first learned of the ongoing sexual harassment and discrimination our female fire fighters have endured for decades, I couldn't help but see a twin flame set behind the majestic backdrop of our National Parks. The first flame representing the smoldering denial and discrimination women have been dealing with for years. The second, the threatening fire at hand.

I quickly learned that the call of the wildland firefighter is a very strong and personal one. I heard many women say; "It's exciting." "I love nature" "I left my office job-there's no where else I want to be."  Their love of the job stronger than the retaliation and hate.

Besides a deep passion for the land and a desire to be of service, the job of a wildland firefighter requires intense stamina. Women can be required to carry up to  five gallons of water (approximately 40 pounds) and are challenged with fitness tests which include carrying an additional 45 pound pack on a three mile hike in 45 minutes. The added psychological and physical burden brought on by harassment, assault, inaction and retaliation is what fuels me to make this film. It's time to lift this historic and traumatic weight.

Struck by the extremes of the problem I wondered what might nature think? The earth, air, fire and water we all share in our DNA. I decided to visit Agatha, an elder California Oak who I named  without knowing it meant Goddess of the Breast.  The answer is obvious, an assault against a woman is an assault against nature.


Eleanor Roosevelt said "The fears you don't face become your limits."

It's time for a new story. One that is no longer trapped in the collective memory of the fear of the male hierarchy losing power. The #MeToo movement has ignited. It's time for real accountability and consequence. Women are not giving up and not going backwards.  It's time for an end to the cover ups, the harassment,  the endless retaliations, the shame and trauma. Art is always the way into the healing. With your support we will get this film made!

Deborah Attoinese (Writer-Director)

Perryville Arizona Women's Prison battling the Highline Fire  (Photo: Arizona Dept of Forest 2017)


THANK YOU TO OUR CONTRIBUTORS: Time Magazine, CSpan, PBS, Elizabeth Flock, Kathyrn Joyce, Emily Kassie, the Huffington Post, the Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, the Phoenix New Times and to fellow filmmakers WONDERCAMP & REI, Arlene Bogna, Tony Ferranti, Gina Ferazzil (LA Times/Photographer)


Additional Links:




Who am I pledging this money to? 

This project meets the requirements of our host, Seed&Spark. They oversee, collect and disperse the funds. Your pledge will not be collected until our goal is met, therefore your credit card will not be charged until then.


Is my donation tax deductible?



Is it urgent?

Yes.  Our crowd funding campaign's success must meet its goal within 30 days.


When will the film be finished?


WOMEN OF THE WILDLANDS is in preproduction.  Once the money is raised, the film will begin full production.  The estimated completion of the film is 18 months.


Where will the film be viewed?

Distribution is possible in film festivals, online streaming, cable outlets, theatre's and also available for purchase.


Why is it titled “WOMEN OF THE WILDLANDS”?

The women refer to female naturalists dedicated to the care, preservation, conservation, and wildlife of public lands, which include firefighters, biologists, researchers, forest rangers, arborists.

Wildlands refer to the BLM, National Forest, National Parks and State forests and parks land.






Use the WishList to Pledge cash and Loan items - or - Make a pledge by selecting an Incentive directly.

Insurance & Permits

Costs $3,000

Insurance & Permits is one thing we're definitely going to need.

Casting & Expert Advisers

Costs $2,000

The film will feature three working female fire fighters, we want to get it right.

Food & Expendables

Costs $1,000

Everyone's gotta eat! Taking care of your crew is important.

Crew & Equipment

Costs $6,500

Good rental equipment helps make magic.

Cash Pledge

Costs $0

About This Team

DEBORAH ATTOINESE (Director/Producer)

"This film took me by surprise.  I thought I was aware of the problems plaguing our National Parks, after  building this campaign I can honetly say, I had no idea. And I know I'm not alone.  I am empowered and emboldened by the stories of these incredible women, their strength, passion for the land and their immense courage. It's with great humility we stand beside each and every one of them.  It's impossible to make a movie or any piece of art without it changing you-I am deep on my way and we haven't even started shooting yet."

Originally from New York Deborah is an award winning director, produce and writer. Her work has been show on Netflix, CineMax and Showtime and includes Hollywood Pictures, Tri-Star Pictures and more.



Trisha refuses to give Deb a bio so you're just going to have to guess who she is and what she's looking at...  :)



Susan is an entrepreneur working in the crossroads of fashion, technology and personal empowerment. Her company, ModeDNA takes fashion into the realm of tapping into your authenticity and personal strengths to create your own unique style. She lives in Silicon Valley. Susan’s involvement in What’s Next is driven by her desire to contribute to making a difference for the next generation through broadening awareness and gaining a deeper understanding of how we all affect one another.


Annie Delgado is a former attorney who now serves as an educator in Merced, California. She has taught high school women’s studies since 2008. In addition to her classroom work, she oversees the Lift While You Lead Empowerment Project and was recognized as a Champion of Change in 2016 by the Obama Administration for her work with marginalized girls. Her paper, which outlines the ways in which one can defy cultural norms by launching women’s studies in the high school setting, can be found in Feminist Pedagogy, Practice, and Activism: Improving the Lives of Girls and Women.  Annie has had the opportunity to advance issues in equity when she has spoken in Montreal (Quebec, Canada), San Juan (Puerto Rico), London, and at Oxford University. The issue of equity is a driving force in that which she teaches and the manner in which she lives her life. She is honored to be a part of this.



Heather has spent her professional career as a litigator, arbitrator and mediator. She is passionate about land conservation and stewardship. She can be found on a hiking trail, in her garden or in the pottery studio. She is proud and excited to work on a project that celebrates Mother Earth and also provides an honest and critical inquiry into woman's roles in traditionally male dominated professions.


KAY BROWN (Producer)

My mother was a logger. Their forests provided for many homesteaders before the corporation raids. Their sense of justice was/is a driving force. Personally, I have 2 sons and 7 grandchildren. Professionally, besides graphic design in the motion picture industry, I serve as a dispute resolution mediator, legal researcher and editor. Also founded a newspaper and helped establish the Hispanic Urban Center, a teacher re-training institute in Los Angeles.


LUCIE SUTTON  (Social Media Coordinator)

Lucie is an LMU graduate from Culver City. She comes from a home where activism was a part of life and hopes to be part of the current change. "I am excited to add perspective and gain insight while working on a project that women everywhere are affected by."




Current Team