Martha Foster

Martha Foster is a leading specialist in international documentary
film and television. With graduate education in both anthropology and
media, she has worked with universities, museums, festivals and
broadcasters in the United States and Asia, created a highly
prestigious juried international documentary festival, and developed
story ideas for an Emmy award-winning documentary series for Chicago
Public Television.

She has worked since 2001 to establish and nurture the organization
of Living Earth Television (LETV), and serves as Executive Director.
The creation of Living Earth Television is the culmination of her
life’s work with documentary, education and broadcasting.

Martha has worked and traveled extensively on four continents — Asia,
Africa, Europe and North America. In September of 2008, she served as a
judge for the new World Mountain Documentary Festival of Qinghai,
China. In 2007, she spoke at the Magnolia Forum of the Shanghai
International Television Festival. In 2001, and again in 2003, she was
invited as the first and only American to serve as a juror for the
Sichuan International Television Documentary Festival, a leading
festival and broadcast market in Asia. She has taught television
production personnel and students throughout China, including at
Beijing, Chengdu, and Shanghai.

Martha has worked with the Smithsonian Institution, Chicago’s Field
Museum, Columbia College Chicago and Chicago Public Television. She has
garnered recognition and awards at all phases of her career, including
five Emmy awards in 2001-02, a Woodrow Wilson Fellowship, and a Mass
Media Fellowship through the American Association for the Advancement of
Science. Beginning in 1995, she created and directed the Windy City
International Documentary Festival. She has taught a Senior Seminar on
Media and Values at Columbia College Chicago. She was selected as an
Influential Woman in Business in 2003 by the National Association of
Women Business Owners. She holds a Bachelors degree in Anthropology at
Northwestern University and a Masters in Visual Anthropology at the
University of Illinois at Chicago, and has completed coursework for a
Master of Fine Arts program in film and video at Columbia College

Martha is also a Kosmos Global Ambassador and has distrbuted complimentary copies of the journal throughout southeast Asia.

Getting to Know the Neighbors


Living Earth Television’s (LETV) work is introducing neighbors around the world through documentaries, and I do that with film and with Kosmos Journal. The pages of Kosmos are often so rich and dense that I need to pause frequently when reading and viewing to just absorb the tumble of recognition, ideas and appreciation they generate. Documentary films often offer me the same richness of experience, insight and connection.

Kosmos Comes to Myanmar


Myanmar—Burma—is unlike anyplace I have seen before, even in extensive travels on four continents. It’s a land of contradictions, breathtakingly beautiful and vibrant, yet poor and isolated. A former British colony, and under Japanese occupation during the second World War, the country has been run by a military dictatorship since 1962, and has been virtually closed to interaction with the outside world.