Rikshaw Films

Brower Youth Awards 2014: Jackson Koeppel


Since 2000, the Brower Youth Award has recognized outstanding youth leaders who are making strides in the environmental movement. From 2008 - 2014 Rikshaw Films was commissioned to create short documentary profile films on each of the six winners. 

Highland Park is part of the Detroit metropolitan area and the city’s population had dropped by more 80 percent since the auto factories left the area. In 2011, about 1,000 of the city’s 1,500 streetlights were decommissioned by the local utility to ameliorate a $4 million municipal debt. Residential streets were left in the dark. In 2014 winner Koeppel co-founded Soulardarity – a community organization that’s coordinating the installation of 200 solar streetlights and organizing a cooperative of residents, businesses, organizations, and institutions in Detroit. The cooperative will maintain the streetlights with annual membership dues. The solar streetlights are affordable, environment-friendly, and provide a powerful avenue for engaging local citizens in conversations about sustainability and community resilience.

Production Company
Rikshaw Films

Director/Producer Dominic Howes
Cinematographer Joel Weber
Editor Joel Weber