ARLEIGH PRELOW BIO
As a young girl, growing up in Compton, CA, Arleigh Prelow was enthralled with the “story of the underdog,” and was drawn to films that focused on the triumph of the human spirit. She later felt compelled to create films herself that brought such stories forth. Throughout her career she has endeavored to produce exquisite, thoughtful and well-crafted work that enlightens, engages and inspires its audience.
Arleigh was first introduced to the words of Howard Thurman during sermons at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta by its then pastor, Dr. Joseph Roberts. After delving into Thurman’s writings, she met and heard him preach at the Fellowship Church of All Peoples in San Francisco in 1980. Arleigh was touched by his “vast, deep river presence.” After his death in 1981, Arleigh presented her vision for a major documentary to Dr. Thurman’s widow, Sue Bailey Thurman, who with her family provided precious archival materials. Work began on the film in 1994. Much like Howard Thurman's Arleigh’s own life has been committed to persevering against the odds, to saying “yes” when the world says “no,” and to being grounded in faith, hope, and courage.
Arleigh's career has included the telling of compelling and inspiring human stories. Her production credits include Howard Thurman: Spirit of the Movement, a documentary for the Museum of the African Diaspora in San Francisco. She produced and directed research for the award-winning In Search of the Sacred for the Smithsonian Institution, and co-produced and researched the award-winning Ain’t You Gotta Right civil rights video wall, for the Simon Wiesenthal Museum of Tolerance. In addition, Arleigh conducted production research for the motion picture, The Great Debaters, and won an Emmy award for her documentary, Sweet Auburn.
Arleigh appears in Who’s Who Among Black Americans and Who’s Who Among Executives and Professionals and is the mother of two adult daughters, Alison and Kara. Arleigh earned an undergraduate degree in Communications and Public Policy at the University of California, Berkeley. More recently, she received her Master of Divinity degree from Harvard University, affirming a call as one who ministers, and provides hope and inspiration through the arts.