This is a film-and-discussion program featuring the award-winning docudrama Disobedience: The Sousa Mendes Story by Joel Santoni and starring Bernard Le Coq as the Holocaust rescuer Aristides de Sousa Mendes.


SILVERIO DE SOUSA MENDES is the great-grandson of Aristides de Sousa Mendes and President of the General Council of the Fundação Aristides de Sousa Mendes (Portugal). He was the Sousa Mendes family representative who officially received the Certificate of Honor from the President of Portugal on the occasion of the induction of Aristides de Sousa Mendes into the National Pantheon. He holds a Master’s Degree and MBA from Coimbra University. He works as Chief Business Officer of Body Interact, a Portuguese healthcare education company with a subsidiary in the United States and 55 business partners worldwide that allows current and future healthcare professionals to enhance their clinical reasoning and decision-making skills. Silvério was elected to the Corporate Roundtable Executive Committee of the Society for Simulation in Healthcare.

OLIVIA MATTIS is President of the Sousa Mendes Foundation. She is an award-winning musicologist and author with a Ph.D. from Stanford University and a B.A. from Yale University. Twelve members of her paternal family were rescued by Aristides de Sousa Mendes as they escaped from Belgium in 1940. She delivered Keynote addresses at the Yom Hashoah commemorations of the cities of Philadelphia and Rochester and the Jewish community of Scotland. She has taught musicology at the Eastman School of Music and elsewhere. She is a Contributing Editor of the Jewish genealogy journal Avotaynu Online and the author of “Sousa Mendes’s List — The Search for Survivors.”

CRAIG DERSHOWITZ is the Chief Executive Officer of Artists 4 Israel whose Righteous Murals Project features Aristides de Sousa Mendes among other rescuers. He has worked with over 2000 artists representing more than 32 countries using art as a tool for social change. For his work, he was presented the Defender of Israel award, been honored by Prime Minister Netanyahu in a public ceremony, been named 36 under 36 and one of the 100 most influential Jewish minds. Most important to Craig is that he received the Key to the City of Sderot for his work there during wartime. In the private sector, Mr. Dershowitz worked at Morgan Stanley and wrote for Vice and similar publications. He sold an internationally distributed graffiti magazine to fund the first year of Artists 4 Israel’s activity.

MARIANA ABRANTES who moderated the panel, is the Board Treasurer of the Sousa Mendes Foundation. Coming from a village in central Portugal, she studied Economics at UC-Berkeley and earned an MA from Princeton University. After training and working in Chase Manhattan Bank, she returned to Portugal, where she worked at the European Investment Bank. She also served in the Portuguese government’s Ministries of Transport and Health, and on the Boards of international investment funds and the Fulbright Commission Portugal. She is a dual Portuguese-US citizen.

This discussion is available on YouTube via the link below

Watch Here