Karen Akins
Akins headshot

Karen Akins is an award winning documentary film director with a strong interest in health, social justice, and the environment. Awards: Best Documentary Director, Harlem Film Festival (2020). She has just premiered her newest feature doc, THE QUIETEST YEAR, at the Global Health Film Festival in London (Dec 2023).

Karen’s first documentary EL SUSTO, released in 2019, explored the politics of sugary drinks and diabetes in Mexico. It is currently available on streaming platforms and also widely used in universities, global health programs, medical schools, and with Latino Health groups. Awards include Best National Feature, South Texas International Film Festival, 2nd Place Documentary, United Latin International Film Festival, Official Selection at the Global Health Film Festival (London), Public Health Film Festival (Munich), Breakthroughs: The Tulane Public Health and Social Justice Film Festival, Festival de Cine Latino Americano-Norte (Finalist), and the New Haven Documentary Film Festival

Demonstrating her love of interdisciplinary fields of study, Karen holds 2 masters degrees in City Design and Social Science (2002) and International Relations (1979), both from the London School of Economics and Political Science. She lives in Stowe, Vermont where she enjoys outdoor pursuits and quiet… when she can get it.


  • The Quietest Year Trailer