Michelle Shephard is an award-winning journalist, author, filmmaker and podcast host and producer who has covered issues of terrorism and civil rights since the 9/11 attacks. During her two decades at the Toronto Star, she reported from more than 20 countries, including Somalia, Yemen, Syria, Pakistan and went behind the wire at the U.S. Naval prison in Guantanamo Bay more than two dozen times. Shephard was the co-director and producer of the Emmy-nominated documentary Guantanamo’s Child, which premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2015 and won Canada Screen Awards for best direction and the Donald Brittain Award for Best Social or Political Program.
Her other films include CBC’s The Way Out (2018, co-director, co-producer, writer), NFB’s Uyghurs: Prisoners of the Absurd (2015, producer) and the Peabody Award-winning Under Fire: Journalists in Combat (2011, associate producer and consultant). She is a three-time recipient of the National Newspaper Award; and the Governor-General’s Michener Award for public service journalism, and the author of Guantanamo’s Child: The Untold Story of Omar Khadr, published in 2008 and Decade of Fear: Reporting from Terrorism’s Grey Zone, published in 2011. Her podcasts series include, White Hot Hate (listed as 2021 best podcasts by The Atlantic magazine and Amazon Music) about the rise of neo Nazi groups, Brainwashed (Awarded Silver for best serialized podcast by the New York Festivals Radio Awards and Ambies nomination) on the CIA’s illegal mind experiments, and Sharmini, a true-crime podcast about the unsolved murder of 15-year-old Sharmini Anandavel.