ROBYN HUSSA FARRELL, MFA, E-RYT is an award-winning Off-Broadway producer and performer, educator and author. As a writer, she re-imagined and authored / edited the award-winning body image blog site We Are The Real Deal (#RealDeal), she is author of the books Healthy Selfitude and Meditation & Mindfulness For Eating Disorder Recovery and is co-adaptor of Normal the Musical (Pretty to the Bone); the inspiration for forming MentalFitness, Inc. (formerly called NORMAL In Schools).
For years Robyn has also been co-creating and producing documentary films with her husband Tim Farrell, through their production company WhiteElephant. Some of the documentary films she has co-directed include Speaking Out About Ed and ED 101; the result of interviewing national experts in the fields of neurobiology, eating disorders, obesity and nutrition. Their next documentary film Beneath The Floorboards and Normal the Musical are slated for release in 2015 – 2016! Robyn is also responsible for creating and implementing the more than fourteen award-winning MentalFitness programs that serve as content to more than twenty national nonprofits and are created in collaboration with more than fifty national experts in medicine, nutrition, mental health and wellness. She recently released the ThinkEatPlay program to optimize health in athletes and a series of educational trainings for new clinicians (as part of core certification requirements for IAEDP CEDS).
Robyn is also producer of The Walking Hospital documentary film project which focuses on a team of alternative healthcare providers who travel to remote regions of the world to deliver free service as well as the 2012 adaptation of The Peer Gynt Project, featured in the 2012 Ibsen Festival in Oslo, Norway. For her work creating the MentalFitness, Inc. programs and initiatives, Robyn received the 2010 Champion in Women’s Health award from former Wisconsin First Lady Ms. Sue Ann Thompson.
People often ask what is it that fuels her forward; “More than 7 of my closest friends and loved ones sought treatment for mental health issues as a direct result of these programs. That was the ‘aha’ and catalyst for me. So much more needs to be done to raise awareness of mental health, wellness and stress management in schools. And even more to prevent these illnesses by collaborating to share research, strategies and evidence-based programs.”
Prior to her work with MentalFitness, Inc., Robyn was Co-Founder and Founding Executive Director of the award-winning New York theatre company Transport Group, winner of the 2007 Drama Desk award for the company’s breadth of vision and challenging productions. She manages her production company WhitElephant, and MentalFitness, Inc. and teaches yoga, mindfulness and stress management workshops to those in recovery whenever she can.
Robyn holds an MFA-Acting from the University of Virginia, is a member of AEA, AFTRA/SAG, the Academy for Eating Disorders (AED), The International Association for Eating Disorders Professionals (IAEDP), Women In Film and Television (NYWIFT) and is an E-RYT Certified Yoga Teacher with the Yoga Alliance. She and her husband are currently co-directing Mental Fitness’s new documentary film (in collaboration with BEDA and ANAD) about the “mental health side of obesity” and the damaging effects caused by bullying children due to weight bias and stigma.
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Additional entries from Robyn:
- The Use of Arts in Awareness & Prevention of Eating Disorders
- Eating Disorder Awareness in Schools — What is Safe, What Isn’t?
- Guidelines for Educating About Eating Disorders in Schools
- Strategy for School Obesity Initiatives — Prevention Research Updates!
- Karen Sossin, Louise Ericson and Others Collaborating to Empower Female Athletes