Runners and documentary filmmakers may have more in common than you think; they both understand what it’s like to pour hours of effort into a final product that’s over before you know it. Center for Inquiry School 2’s resident videographer Elizabeth Redmond won an international student competition for her recent work!

Elizabeth’s documentary “Sands of Time” tells the story of Dorothy Buell, who devoted her life to saving the Indiana dunes from industrial development. Buell formed the activist group Save the Dunes, which eventually led President Lyndon B. Johnson to sign a law declaring the dunes a national park in 1966.

“Sands of Time” was awarded the top elementary school prize in the Lowell Milken Center for Unsung Heroes 2014 international Discovery Award competition. The competition gives students the chance to use their creative talents to shed light on unsung heroes from history, demonstrating the power one person has to make positive change in the world.

Daphne Draa, a CFI 2 art teacher, introduced Indiana’s national parks to her students as a potential source for projects, and Elizabeth jumped at the opportunity. Elizabeth and her mother braved the cold last winter to visit the dunes and began learning how they came to be protected. As soon as she heard about Dorothy Buell, Elizabeth knew she had her unsung hero.

Elizabeth jumped into research on the dunes – she read a lot of books on the dunes and their ecology, interviewed park rangers and even became close with two of Dorothy Buell’s personal friends as she continued the quest for information. Elizabeth’s classmates helped with reenactments for the video; they even made costumes from clothes in the IPS dress code!
 
“I feel happy that I won and I beat a bunch of high schoolers,” Elizabeth said. “It made me feel proud of myself that I could do something, and probably in the future do as much as she [Dorothy Buell] did.”  

We’re proud to have such an accomplished young filmmaker at CFI 2!