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Riverside resident Jay Gerren’s film “Bar Daddy” was screened at the Pan African Film + Arts Festival in Los Angeles. (Courtesy of Gerren Productions)
Riverside resident Jay Gerren’s film “Bar Daddy” was screened at the Pan African Film + Arts Festival in Los Angeles. (Courtesy of Gerren Productions)
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A Riverside filmmaker’s documentary on a man who helped thousands of Black students pass the State Bar of California exam got a recent boost.

“” a film by Redlands High School graduate , was screened at the in Los Angeles, which began Friday, Feb. 16. The event is among the largest African American film festivals in the U.S.

It chronicles how Los Angeles attorney Al Jenkins, who still tutors for the State Bar of California, donated his time and skills to help more than 3,000 Black law graduates pass the rigorous exam.

  • Los Angeles attorney Al Jenkins is seen March 23, 2023,...

    Los Angeles attorney Al Jenkins is seen March 23, 2023, at Loyola Marymount University with former students of his who passed the state bar exam. Jenkins’ work helping Black students pass the test is chronicled in Riverside resident Jay Gerren’s documentary called “Bar Daddy.” (Courtesy of Richard Nichols)

  • “Bar Daddy” is a documentary on Alfred “Al” Jenkins, who...

    “Bar Daddy” is a documentary on Alfred “Al” Jenkins, who helped more than 3,000 Black students pass the bar exam. Created by Riverside resident Jay Gerren, it was screened at the Pan African Film + Arts Festival in Los Angeles. (Courtesy of Gerren Productions)

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In a video posted on Instagram, Jenkins, 86, said he’s been doing the service since 1976 and continues because “I love doing it.”

Gerren, 47, directed and produced the film about his uncle, who tutors students from his home.

“‘Bar Daddy’ tells the story of a man that has dedicated his life to helping others live their purpose,” Gerren wrote in an email. “Numerous accomplished judges, lawyers and business owners all owe their careers to Alfred ‘Al’ Jenkins.”

Gerren’s email added: “There are lots of people using documentaries to tell stories and it is time for us to tell our own stories.”

Gerren, the owner of Gerren Productions, graduated from Redlands High in 1994. On campus, he played basketball and pursued photography as a hobby. His father owned a video production company.

Gerren attended San Bernardino Valley College before transferring to Cal State San Bernardino, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in communications. He also has an MFA from the Academy of Art San Francisco in film and television.

Gerren has taught digital film production for 21 years at Riverside’s Martin Luther King High School.

For information on hosting a “Bar Daddy” screening, email info@gerrenproductions.com

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