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Special Guests

Ken Sagoes

Ken Sagoes Headshot commerical web 2015.jpg

Ken Sagoes became nationally known for the role of "Kincaid" in A Nightmare on Elm Street III & IV, making him the first African-American to survive an international horror film and return for a sequel. He recently completed the indie horror film, Gorenos. He also became widely known as the lovable "Big Baby" in John Singleton's Rosewood.

 

Sagoes is an award-winning writer. He received a CableACE for writing Disney's, On Promised Land starring Dame Joan Plowright. Recently, Sagoes has written two adventure family books that have received reviews internationally (including a review from the UK), called, The Adventures of Nedu – the Great Migration and The Adventures of Nedu – The Secret of the Acorn.

In 1997, Sagoes founded the Los Angeles based non-profit organization, GBC-Giving Back Corporation. GBC provides "Books and Supplies" scholarships for college-bound students, sends youth to summer camp, and sends educational gifts and autographs to youth all over the world. 100% of his autographs go to his non-profit to support inner city youth. "Giving Back" is something he feels he must do.

Leila Olivarri

Leila was born in Colorado Springs, Colorado but moved to North Texas with her family when she was 2 years old, and it has been her home ever since.


Leila is currently a Court Administrator for a District Judge. She has served in this capacity for the past 10 years. She also serves as the Court Administrator for a Family Preservation Drug Court. Prior to that, Leila was a family law paralegal for 11 years.

 

She became interested in the paranormal when she was a teenager, at which time she had several experiences in her childhood home. From that point forward, she was interested in learning about all things paranormal. She has been an investigator for several years and is currently an Administrative Assistant, an Assistant Regional Director of the Southern Region, and Investigator with the Warren Legacy Foundation.

Kristina Downs

Kristina Downs is the Executive Director of the Texas Folklore Society and Assistant Professor of English at Tarleton State University. She holds a PhD in Folklore from Indiana University. She previously worked for the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage and the Journal of Folklore Research. She’s the coeditor of the edited volume Advancing Folkloristics (Indiana University Press, 2021). Her dissertation examined representations of Indigenous heroines in the United States and Mexico. Her research focuses mostly on legends, particularly the ways legends interact with history, literature, news, and digital culture.


She’s been interested in the paranormal since childhood and considers it her gateway into folklore studies. She formerly hosted the podcast Crimelore (currently on hiatus) and has made guest appearances on many podcasts including Midnight Society, Weird Tales, and Encounters. She has also appeared on The UnXplained on the History Channel.


Talk: Traditional Insights on New Experiences. Human beings have been telling stories of paranormal encounters for millennia. While some aspects of these stories have stayed more or less the same, some have changed dramatically. This talk will discuss ways that traditional supernatural narratives can shed new light on contemporary experiences.

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