The Invisibles

: Documentary Feature
GENRE: Documentary
STATUS: Production


In 1944, a young poor sharecropper's son, runs away from his home in the deeply segregated South and goes to Washington, D.C. looking for the american dream and gets his first job cleaning the steps of the US Capitol Building under segregationist Senator, Burnet Maybank.


After arriving in the nation's capital in 1944 as a thirteen-year-old runaway, Bertie Bowman works his way up from cleaning the steps of the Capitol to becoming the hearing coordinator for the U.S. Senate's powerful Foreign Relations Committee becoming the first Black employee of the Senate and the longest-serving African-American staff member on Capitol Hill.


Bertie, who is alive and well today at 88 years-old, will take us through a day in his life at the Capitol and show us the key areas that dramatically impacted both his life and history of our nation itself. We will meet with family, friends and colleagues — everyone who is still with us today that knows Bertie and was a part of these past 75 years including those from the US Senate Credit Union which Bertie has been on the board for over the past 50 years. We have acquired the option to Bertie’s book “Step by Step”, and his life rights and we have the access and support to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee members, past and present—as well as the US Senate Credit Union and its members—both past and present. We will dramatize certain poignant scenes and as well as take Bertie back to Summerton, S.C. where it all started for him and where he met Senator Maybank who infamously told his White constituents that “If anybody’s ever up in Washington, to come and see him.” Bertie, taking that statement to heart, makes this story one of the warmest, most simplistic true stories ever to be made. In a time where basic truths and facts are disputed and history is being questioned—here is a man that stood and continues to stand in the middle of it all—at the epicenter of change in America—now and for the past 75 years— meeting and working with such prolific figures such as Martin Luther King, Jr., JFK, Nixon, Willie Mayes, LBJ…and modern day politicians such as Bill and Hillary Clinton, John Kerry, Joe Biden, John McCain and Senator Corker from TN. We will speak to many of these people and learn from them first-hand how they came to know Bertie and how he affected their lives. On May 9th, 2019, we will also be in attendance at the live ceremony where the US Senate Credit Union and the US Foreign Relations Committee proudly dedicate the newly-minted US Senate Credit Union building after Bertie H. Bowman in the spirit of the creeds for which he lives by and continues to teach future generations.



Cayman Grant - Director, Writer, Executive Producer

Hailing from New Brunswick, Canada, Cayman Grant has written and directed several projects with one of them earning her an Emmy® for her film, Playing For The Mob; as a part of ESPN’s highly acclaimed 30 for 30 Series. Both of Cayman’s narrative and documentary films have screened in over 100 film festivals worldwide and have earned her over 50 accolades and awards; including winning the prestigious NBCUniversal Oxygen Director Award that was presented by Academy® Award Winner, Geena Davis. She is represented by CAA. WEBSITE: TWITTER:

Allie Sandza - Producer

Zach Woods - Director of Photography

Scott Parejo - Executive Producer

Terry City - Executive Producer

Andy Billman - Executive Producer

Paul Carruthers - Editor


Connect With The Filmmakers:


The Gotham Film & Media Institute - Fiscal Sponsorship Program 2023


Help promote my fundraising campaign
Put our donation widget on your website

Get Widget Code



The Gotham Logo


© 2023 The Gotham. All Rights Reserved.
   Design by Andrew Martin

The Gotham Film & Media Institute is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to finding, developing and celebrating the people and projects that shape the future of story.

Learn more about us or become a member