Chris Temple & Zach Ingrasci

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We would love to engage and inspire the attendees of your next event. As filmmakers and humanitarians, we bring a range of experiences and interactive multimedia presentations that can be tailored for your school, business, church, or non-profit. We’re also happy to do Skype presentations!

Co-Founders of Optimist
Award-Winning Documentary Filmmakers

From living in a tent in a Syrian refugee camp to working as radish farmers and surviving on $1 a day in Guatemala, Chris Temple and Zach Ingrasci are award-winning humanitarians, activists, and filmmakers. On-stage, they demystify some of the world’s most complex situations, leaving audiences feeling more connected and empowered to make a difference.

Chris and Zach have received widespread acclaim as bold storytellers and compassionate leaders of social justice — honored with the 2016 Muslim Public Affairs Council Annual Media Award, and recognized alongside Bill Gates and Angelina Jolie as two of the top 100 visionary leaders of 2015 by YPO’s Real Leaders Magazine. They have been called upon to share their expertise at TEDx, the United Nations, and the World Humanitarian Summit, and have been featured on CBS This Morning, as well as in major publications including The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic and Variety.

Chris and Zach began their journey in college, when they produced, directed, and starred in their first film, Living on One Dollar. The film was #1 on iTunes for documentaries, featured on the homepage banner of Netflix, and called “A Must Watch” by Nobel Laureate Muhammad Yunus. Their second feature documentary, Salam Neighbor, provides an intimate look into the lives of Syrian refugees, through their lens as the first filmmakers ever given a tent and registered inside of a refugee camp. Both films have been globally distributed by Netflix and Amazon. 

Equal parts filmmaker and humanitarian, Chris and Zach have been on the front lines fighting for human rights, and have raised over 1.3 million dollars to directly empower disenfranchised communities through microfinance, education, and refugee resettlement – including providing direct aid to beloved film characters and friends like Rosa and Ismail.

They’ve evolved from college students on a mission to internationally recognized filmmakers, currently working on exciting new projects (so stay tuned!). As true examples of their belief that everyone has the power to make a difference, Chris and Zach are inspiring others to do the same.

What People are saying

Chris and Zach are pushing the boundaries of how we tell stories and maximize social impact in the 21st century. At just 30, they bring passion matched with professionalism and a humble respect for the people they’re seeking to help. They make an excellent addition to any panel or keynote.

Carolyn Miles, CEO of Save the Children

[Chris and Zach] don’t just make documentaries. They make themselves part of the story.


These young people are not just gifted documentarians, they are micro-economists who offer a real world glimpse into third world poverty—and, perhaps more surprisingly, real world answers.

Gary Ross, Director of The Hunger Games

What I love about this film is the resilience it reveals…what you’ll see, as Chris and Zach saw when they moved into Za’atari camp, is that beyond headlines, behind the labels, are people that every one of you can relate to.

Her Majesty Queen Rania of Jordan

With several award-winning films and a 5-star presentation, Chris and Zach brought a complete package to our school. They’re relatable and inspiring, and most importantly, their efforts translated into action for my students.

Jeanette, Teacher at Parkway South High School

On a subject too often discussed in numbers, Chris and Zach capture the human element of one of the greatest refugee crises of this generation.

Ted Lieu, U.S. Congressman

Speaking Topics

Over 1.1 billion people in the world survive on less than $1 a day. This talk will take you beyond the statistic and demonstrate how families must be innovative to survive life on the edge of destitute poverty. Join accidental filmmakers Chris and Zach, whose research project living on $1 a day for two months in rural Guatemala led the duo down an unexpected path. What began as a moment of curiosity has grown into two award-winning documentaries distributed by Netflix, over $1 million raised directly for aid, education, and microfinance, and a clear understanding that the poor are our best partners in ending extreme poverty. Through engaging use of video, personal stories, and professional experience, Chris and Zach will help you build empathy for others around the world, achieve a sense of gratitude for the opportunities at your fingertips, practice curiosity to discover your passion, and equip yourself with the tools you need to create change.

This dynamic presentation will equip you with the tools you need to create change, whether in your business, non-profit, church, or day-to-day life. Appropriate for any audience looking to capitalize on their good intentions and turn ideas into action, this presentation will ask the hard questions and leave you with the inspiration and the practical tools to make the most of your charitable efforts. While many seek to make an impact on the world, we must first learn how. As Harvard Dean James Ryan says, the most important step is to recognize that people are experts in their own lives, and before you set out, to always ask, “how can I help?” By integrating media, personal storytelling, and key development strategies, Chris and Zach will provide a road map to help you get started, build your impact, and measure your change.

Faced with a constant stream of violence and anger across every news channel, it often feels like our world has been more divided. Fear of “the other” is on the rise. Open, respectful dialogue has become increasingly rare. Now is the time to reverse this trend by expanding our perspective and understanding of our global neighbors of different backgrounds, religions, ethnicities. As the first filmmakers ever allowed to be registered and given a tent inside a refugee camp, Chris and Zach provide an intimate look into the lives of their Syrian friends, while offering practical and immediate strategies to be a better global neighbor. Incorporating elements of their award-winning film Salam Neighbor, Chris and Zach’s interactive and multimedia presentation will put a human face to one of the world’s most complex crises. By meeting Um Ali, a grandmother who’s turning trash into art, and the street smart, 10-year-old Raouf, this presentation will demonstrate our shared humanity and leave you more connected and empowered to make a difference.