Denise Travers grew up in Madras, Oregon, a small rural agricultural town with a microcosm of diversity. She experienced the beautiful cultural differences of the Hispanic and Native communities throughout her formative years, and gained an appreciation of the hard-working farmers and ranchers. She saw her community through the various motivating lenses of her parents. Her dad, who was a member of the Jesuit Volunteer Corps, a cabinet maker, and teacher; and her mom, a SAHM and youth minister. The oldest of four children, Denise felt a duty early on to be present in the moment and to inspire and educate those around her. She graduated with a degree in Religious Studies and Communications from Gonzaga University. There, the Sisters of the Holy Names of Jesus and Mary, as well as the Jesuit, Lutheran, Episcopalian, and Buddhist professors influenced her greatly. Several years ago she became a refugee volunteer with Catholic Charities after seeing the photo of Alan Kurdi, the Syrian toddler, face down on a beach in Turkey. She and her husband Adam are attempting to raise their two young children in Charlotte, NC to develop deep faith, become good stewards of the earth, and helpful citizens of the world. Denise was inspired to create Contemplative Rebellion because she saw a need to provide work-at-home opportunities for refugees and immigrants, and to support organizations that are making a real difference for good. She believes that our similarities are greater than our differences, and the solutions will be found in the margins of the current movements when we listen to that still, small voice within us all.
Joy Dale pens herself as a child of the world. Growing up the daughter of missionary parents, she began traveling at an early age and was exposed to various cultures. After living in Nigeria for four years with her parents while they helped to build faith in the area and a church for worship, her family left the continent content with their work. That experience left Joy with a love of traveling and a desire to experience different cultures. During Spring Break one year while visiting her brother in Los Angeles, she fell in love with the process of film making. She felt this was a great way to educate people on various topics while utilizing her creativity. After graduating with a degree in English Literature, she went on to study film-making at the American Intercontinental University in London, England--furthering her education in film and checking a destination off her bucket list at the same time. After an illness in her family, Joy moved back to the U.S. permanently making New York her home base for the next ten years. In the summer of 2017, she relocated to Charlotte, NC where she met Denise Travers. They bonded over their similar upbringing, admiration for cultural differences, and hope for change. Joy is mom to two young boys who she adores and who have become her travel companions. She feels it’s important for them to have a strong foundation of respect and understanding of other cultures as she does. She also spends her free time as an Advisory Board member of the Charlotte Film Community.