Norah Shapiro

Norah Shapiro

Director and Producer, Time for Ilhan

Award winning Minneapolis filmmaker Norah Shapiro left a decade-long career as a public defender to work as a documentary filmmaker, and hasn’t looked back since. Her latest film, Time for Ilhan about the rise of Congresswoman Ilhan Omar (the nation’s 1st Somali-American legislator) premiered at the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival, and premiered internationally at the 2018 Hot Docs Film Festival in its Silence Breakers spotlight and Docs for Schools program. Time for Ilhan has won multiple awards including HBO Best Feature Documentary Audience Award at the Provincetown International Film Festival, and Best U.S. Feature Documentary at the 2018 Hot Springs Documentary Film Festival. Recently, Norah received How Women Lead’s 2019 Changing the Narrative award. The film, still on the festival circuit, launches its impact tour in March, 2019.

Norah’s first feature documentary Miss Tibet: Beauty in Exile (2014) premiered at the 2014 DOC NYC Film Festival, and screened widely at festivals throughout the U.S. and abroad. She is currently producing a documentary about the far-reaching impact of a notorious abduction of a young boy in rural Minnesota, and is also developing a project about a young woman’s quest to create the nation’s 1st Memorial to survivors of sexual violence.

Norah received the 2012 McKnight Filmmaking Fellowship, and numerous production and completion funding awards from funders including the Catapult Film Fund, the Harnisch Foundation, the Jerome Foundation, and the Minnesota State Arts Board. Norah is a proud, founding member of the Minnesota Chapter of Film Fatales. Her production company, Flying Pieces Productions produces freelance video content, specializing in helping social change-makers harness the power of video to tell their stories.

Clips and Conversations: Time for Ilhan – In Partnership with Media Impact Funders


Representative Ilhan Omar (D-MN) is the first Somali-American and one of the first two Muslim women to be elected to the U.S. Congress. Just a few years before she became one of the most outspoken new Members of Congress, Representative Ilhan Omar was an underdog candidate seeking to upset a veteran member of the Minnesota State House of Representatives. The recent documentary film, Time for Ilhan, captures the intimate behind-the-scenes drama of an insurgent campaign, tracking the unlikely rise of a Somali refugee to become one of the most prominent voices in a new generation of political leadership. Join us […]