Common Sense Media Announces Children’s Media Expert and Former Film Industry Executive Yalda T. Uhls to Lead New Los Angeles Office

Uhls to expand organization’s presence in Los Angeles schools and lead Southern California development efforts
For immediate release
Wednesday, October 19, 2011

San Francisco ­- Common Sense Media, the national nonprofit organization dedicated to helping kids and families thrive in a world of media and technology, announced today that children’s media expert and former film industry executive Yalda T. Uhls has been named regional director for the organization’s new Los Angeles office. Uhls will be responsible for expanding the organization’s digital citizenship program and overall development efforts in Southern California, with a specific focus on forging partnerships with entertainment companies that support the organization’s mission to educate kids to become smart digital citizens.

“As the lines between technology, entertainment, and education continue to blur, it is more important than ever for parents and teachers to have the tools and information they need to help kids make smart media choices,” said Jim Steyer, CEO and founder, Common Sense Media. “The entertainment industry is obviously a key partner for us, and Yalda brings the right blend of skills and passion for our mission to cultivate and strengthen our presence in Los Angeles.”

Uhls, who is currently working toward a doctorate degree in developmental psychology at Children’s Digital Media Center@LA (CDMC@LA) at UCLA, is an informed and personable authority on media's effects on children. Her research has been featured in The New York Times, CNN, Time Magazine, CBS Los Angeles, KPCC, AOL News, and many other news outlets, and she delivers speeches regularly to academic, community, and corporate audiences about digital media’s effects on children's development. Prior to her academic career, Uhls was a senior vice president at MGM in film production, as well as a consultant to Google, Santa Monica.

“Digital media is forever going to be a part of our kids’ lives, and it’s up to us as a society to provide families with the information they need to help them navigate this ever-changing technology landscape,” said Uhls, who is the mother of two children. “I’ve dedicated the last several years of my life to examining the impact of media on youth development and am thrilled to be working for an organization that shares my enthusiasm for helping families manage these issues.”

Common Sense Media’s digital literacy and citizenship curriculum ­– “Digital Literacy and Citizenship in a Connected Culture” – is a comprehensive K-12 curriculum designed to empower students to think critically and make informed choices about how they live and treat others in today’s digital media world. Since launching in August 2009, Common Sense’s education programs have been adopted by a network of more than 20,000 schools in all 50 states and 60 countries. Los Angeles was one of the first markets in which the program was launched.

About Common Sense Media

Common Sense Media is dedicated to improving the lives of kids and families by providing the trustworthy information, education, and independent voice they need to thrive in a world of media and technology. We exist because our kids are growing up in a culture that profoundly impacts their physical, social, and emotional well-being. We provide families with the advice and media reviews they need in order to make the best choices for their children. Through our education programs and policy efforts, Common Sense Media empowers parents, educators, and young people to become knowledgeable and responsible digital citizens. For more information, go to: www.commonsense.org.

Press Contacts:

Marisa Connolly
415-553-6703
mconnolly@commonsense.org

Julia Plonowski
415-553-6728
jplonowski@commonsense.org

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