Share Productions is a video production company that produces and distributes documentaries and educational videos about race, class, labor, and immigration issues with a focus on the challenges and benefits that ethnic and religious diversity bring to society. Share Productions strives to create entertaining and informative programs that foster greater understanding among people of different cultures, raise consciousness, stimulate dialogue and move people to action. The company was founded in 1998 by Valerie Lapin Ganley, who in addition to being a filmmaker, is a political activist and union organizer. “As I make documentaries, I am not only informed by my experiences as an activist, but I am inspired by the people I have met while fighting to improve workplace rights, end war and racism, protect the environment, and gain equal rights for members of the LGBTQ community,” says Valerie.
Share Production's most recent film The Long Ride is about the historic 2003 Immigrant Workers Freedom Ride and the birth of the new Civil Rights Movement for immigrant workers in the United States. The film has screened at film festivals in the U.S., Mexico and Europe winning Best Documentary at the Immigration Film Fest in Washington, D.C.; Mención Honorifica at Encuentro Hispanoamericano de Cine y Video Documental: Contra El Silencio Todas Las Voces in Mexico City; and Outstanding Feature Documentary at Festival de Cine Latino Americano in Texas.
Shalom Ireland, which also explores the experiences of immigrants in a new homeland, is about the history of Ireland's remarkable, yet little know Jewish community. The film was inspired by Valerie's discovery that her great-grandparents were the first Jewish couple married in Waterford, Ireland. Shalom Ireland aired on RTÉ, Ireland's national TV broadcaster, and has screened at more than 150 film festivals and community events around the world.
Valerie is a two-time Emmy Awards recipient whose credits include: KQED’s Bay Window Emmy Award winning programs Price of Prosperity: Squeezed Out, and Heart of the Game; Not In Our Town, the story of Billings, Montana residents who joined together to fight against anti-Semitism and white supremacist activity, an award-winning program that aired on PBS and gained widespread acclaim as a model for how films can stimulate social activism; Digital Divide, a four-part PBS series that examines whether widespread computer use is creating new opportunities in education and the workplace or deepening social divisions of race and gender and between rich and poor, which aired on PBS; Livelyhood, a PBS series about the changing nature of work in America; We Do The Work, a series about the history, culture and issues facing working people; KCET’s Dropouts, which won an Emmy Award; and KCET’s Price of Progress.
Prior to becoming a filmmaker, Valerie was a Capitol Hill Legislative Assistant. She worked on efforts to protect the environment and promote the use of renewable energy.
Valerie serves on the Board of Irish Culture Bay Area, producer of the Irish Arts and Writers Festival, and as a screener for the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival.