Joel P. Engardio

Joel P. Engardio (born September 17, 1972) is a writer, documentary filmmaker and civil liberties advocate. He has worked as a journalist in print, television and independent film. He currently works for the American Civil Liberties Union, using reporting principles to find plaintiffs with compelling stories that can shape public opinion. He also produces short online videos about ACLU issues that focus on story-telling.


Engardio's byline has appeared in the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Boston Globe, San Francisco Chronicle, Christian Science Monitor, San Francisco Weekly, USA Today, Newsweek and P.O.V. magazine. In radio, he has written essays broadcast on NPR’s This I Believe series and KQED-San Francisco’s Perspectives. In television, Engardio worked as an associate producer for ABC News at the news magazine 20/20 and the network's documentary unit, Turning Point. Engardio wrote, narrated and directed Knocking, a documentary on Jehovah’s Witnesses that was nationally broadcast in the United States on the PBS series Independent Lens in 2007. Knocking was also broadcast in Australia, Canada, Greece and Israel and released on DVD in English, Spanish and Portuguese.


Engardio was the recipient of the 2000 National Press Foundation award for science writing. In 2003, his opinion writing was recognized with a first place award by the Society of Professional Journalists in Northern California. He was a finalist for the University of Missouri-Columbia 1999 national writing award in multicultural journalism. Engardio's film Knocking was named Best Documentary at the 2006 USA Film Festival.


Engardio graduated from Michigan State University, majoring in journalism and history. He was born and raised in Saginaw, Michigan where his mom was the only member of a large Italian Catholic family to become one of Jehovah's Witnesses. Engardio currently lives in New York.


Newsweek article "Belief Watch: Witness" by Lisa Miller, May 28, 2007, page 13

San Francisco Chronicle article "Finding my religion" by David Ian Miller, May 14, 2007

Detroit News article "Former reporter digs up stories of anti-gay bias" by Deb Price, April 9, 2007, page 9A

USA Today article "Opening the door for us all" by Joel P. Engardio, May 7, 2007, page 13A

NPR broadcast "Learning True Tolerance" by Joel P. Engardio, November 25, 2007, Weekend Edition Sunday

KQED broadcast "The Silent Epidemic" by Joel P. Engardio, January 3, 2003, Perspectives

Air America Radio broadcast "State of Belief" with Rev. Welton Grandy, May 20, 2007

Washington Post/Newsweek, Guest Voice, On Faith column

"Witness to separation of church and state" by Joel P. Engardio, June 7, 2007

Entertainment Weekly article "TV: What to Watch" May 25, 2007, page 78

Christianity Today movie review "Fundamentalism and Freedom" by David Neff, May 22, 2007

External links

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