Exhibit: Women Who Dared
BiographiesMultimediaBy CityAbout WWD Jewish Gender Activism
What She Said
  Shelley Morhaim
  Filmmaker and Environmental Activist
  Baltimore WWD Event 2002
  Born in 1949
  Founded a film company, Earthome Productions, to promote ideas of sustainable relationships between the human community and the natural world
Biography  up to top

Shelley Morhaim is an award wining independent filmmaker and long time community activist. Throughout the 1980s, Morhaim volunteered in a number of Jewish community organizations in Baltimore, including the board of CHANA (Counseling Helpline and Aid Network for Abused Women) and as Chair of the Metropolitan Issues Committee of the Baltimore Jewish Council. Morhaim also served as an officer of BLEWS (Black/Jewish Forum of Baltimore., Inc.), an organization founded for the purpose fostering connections between African Americans and Jews.

In the mid-1980s, Morhaim also began her involvement with the Beyond War Foundation, a national grassroots education movement that arose in response to the threat of nuclear war. Morhaim participated in Beyond War's "The Earth in Every Classroom" project that placed some 7500 framed NASA photographs of the Earth seen from space in classrooms in Baltimore City and County. The photograph, along with supporting curriculum materials, was used by teachers to provide a visual expression of the interconnectedness of our planet's people and living systems. In 1992, Morhaim's leadership was recognized when she was named by the Baltimore Jewish Times as one of the ten individuals who will lead Baltimore Jewry into the 21st century.

In 1995, Morhaim co-founded Earthome, Inc., a Maryland non-profit whose mission is to promote a sustainable relationship between the human community and the natural world. One of Earthome's major projects has been the Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) program at Cromwell Valley Park in Baltimore County. The first CSA on public land in the United States, the Cromwell Valley project provides fresh organic produce to 120 shareholder families and educates the approximately 4,000 students who tour the park each year.

Combining her interests in film and ecological issues, Morhaim founded Earthome Productions in 2000. In 2002, Earthome's first film, The Next Industrial Revolution premiered at the Guggenheim Museum in New York. Documenting how major corporations like Ford, Nike, and Herman Miller Furniture are re-designing buildings and industrial processes and products to follow natural principles. The award winning film has been broadcast on Maryland Public Television, presented at the Smithsonian and National Building Museums, and has been hailed as an inspirational look at a hopeful vision of the future, presenting both theory and real world examples of a design revolution that has the potential to re-make our world.

Morhaim lives in Baltimore County, Maryland with her husband Dan. They have three grown children.

What She Said  up to top
I just see my Judaism as just such a basic part of me ...More 
I guess my spirituality includes kinds of traditional Jewish ...More 
To go back to Jewish principles or religious principles ...More 
[My] great grandmother, Molly [Lifshutz] and her sister Fanny [Lorber] came to this country ...More 
My mother [Betty Luby Cole Waghelstein] has always been active ...More 
My grandmother [May Luby] was also a volunteer ...More 
I guess people I have been inspired by: I wouldn't necessarily call them role models ...More 
Women are very good at supporting each other ...More 
It's my favorite story in terms of my kids about activism. When my daughter ...More  Audio available
[Being a woman] may be a bit of a disadvantage at times because film is a pretty male area ...More 
I certainly came of age in the feminist movement of the sixties and seventies ...More  Audio available
[Beyond War] was basically an anti-nuclear war group when we first heard about it ...More  Audio available
I think as I learned about Judaism's stance about social activism and I saw it in my own family ...More 
Earthome was founded in 1995... We see the whole issue of sustainability as the major challenge ...More 
[My film] The Next Industrial Revolution came out of a combination of work I'd been doing ...More 
The county uses [the Community Supported Agriculture project] as a demonstration farm ...More  Audio available
We were all volunteers with Beyond War and we started meeting around 1987... One of the things that Beyond War did...was called 'The Earth in Every Classroom' ...More 
BLEWS (Black/Jewish Forum of Baltimore) is really [about] coalition building, ...More 
Oh well anything creative - you are taking huge risks ...More 
It was great to make [my film, The Next Industrial Revolution,] because we actually went to the companies ...More 
Multimedia  up to top
Photographs Photographs
Audio Clips Audio 
Answer - Path to Activism (Shelley Morhaim - nuclear war)
Answer - Impact on World (Shelley Morhaim - farm)
Answer - Work and Family (Shelley Morhaim - daughter)
 up to top

How to Cite This Page
For a bibliography: Jewish Women's Archive. "JWA - Women Who Dared - Biography Shelley Morhaim." <http://jwa.org/exhibits/wwd/jsp/bio.jsp?personID=psmorhaim>.

For a footnote: Jewish Women's Archive, "JWA - Women Who Dared - Biography Shelley Morhaim," <http://jwa.org/exhibits/wwd/jsp/bio.jsp?personID=psmorhaim>.