Abram Barker is a senior at Lebanon High School (LHS) in Lebanon, Missouri. Abram is the producer of The Hive, their high school news program, and is co-president of the Gender and Sexuality Alliance Club at LHS. During 2020, Abram created a twelve-minute documentary telling the story of local African American educator Eleanor Ford. Even though Mrs. Ford passed away roughly thirty years ago, her wide impact is felt today in the lives of her hundreds of former students. Abram has spent their entire life in rural Lebanon, Missouri, and became interested in visual storytelling through an interest in videography in early adolescence. While those videos harbored a more humorous tone, interest in storytelling evolved into this documentary. At the heart of "Good Morning, Mrs. Ford," is not a signifying act of heroism or achievement, but the story of African Americans in small-town Missouri. Abram's documentary serves to illuminate a largely ignorant community through a heart-warming story of a great educator, while visiting the topic of Lebanon's very real past of segregation and racism following integration. Abram has also been involved in documentaries for National History Day that highlight the stories of other marginalized people, namely World War II's all-female Russian regiment — the Night Witches — and Gad Beck, a Jewish and homosexual Holocaust survivor responsible for saving the lives of their fellow Jews in hiding. Abram intends to continue pursuing a career as a documentarian and journalist, employing their skills to highlight lesser-known figures in our history and current communities.
2022 - MISSOURI (ST. LOUIS REGION)