PresidentCompany: Story Center Films, LLC
Role: Session Presenter
2021 Conference Session:
CURED: Lessons from LGBTQ History for Creating Social Change and Fostering Workplace Authenticity
Patrick Sammon has a mix of experience in filmmaking, broadcast journalism, and LGBTQ political advocacy. The president of Story Center Films, LLC, in Washington, D.C., he is the co-director and co-producer, with Bennett Singer, of a documentary about the remarkable and little-known story of the LGBTQ activists who successfully battled the American Psychiatric Association to remove homosexuality from its list of mental illnesses. Until 1973, the medical establishment considered every gay person mentally ill.
The film, “CURED,” tells the David-versus-Goliath story of the activists who challenged this diagnosis — and won. Combining eyewitness testimony with newly unearthed archival footage, the film reveals how a small group of impassioned activists achieved this unexpected victory. After premiering in late summer of 2020, “CURED” is being shown at leading film festivals — virtually — around the world. It will be broadcast nationally on PBS during October 2021. Additionally, it’s being distributed on television and digital outlets around the globe. Find more details at CuredDocumentary.com.
Previously, Patrick was the creator and executive producer of “CODEBREAKER,” a “superb” (The Telegraph), “imaginative” (Sunday Times), and award-winning drama-documentary that “artfully explored” (The Mail) the life and legacy of Alan Turing, one of the 20th century’s most important people. Turing helped win World War II through his codebreaking and laid the intellectual foundation for the computer age. Instead of being celebrated, however, he faced brutal persecution from the British government because he was gay. More details about the film can be found at TuringFilm.com.
Patrick turned his idea for “CODEBREAKER” into a highly acclaimed film that has reached all corners of the globe. He put together an award-winning international production team including Great Britain-based Furnace Ltd., secured financing, and helped oversee both the business and creative sides of the production. Patrick also developed and implemented a creative and comprehensive grassroots distribution strategy for “CODEBREAKER,” combining traditional distribution channels with a unique outreach campaign to connect with the target audience.
More than 3 million viewers around the world have seen the film through television broadcasts (including a worldwide premiere on Channel 4 in the UK and a U.S. premiere on “Discovery Science”), a 12-city U.S. theatrical release, film festivals, digital outlets such as Netflix and iTunes, DVDs, and more than 250 non-theatrical screenings (including The British Museum, the U.S. National Archives, and the Organization of American States). Patrick has also participated in dozens of workplace diversity presentations — screening the film and facilitating discussions about how Alan Turing’s life can help inspire change today.
A summa cum laude graduate of Syracuse University, Patrick started his career as an award-winning television news reporter. He worked at WJHL Newschannel 11, the CBS affiliate in the Tri-Cities (Johnson City and Kingsport, Tenn., and Bristol, Tenn./Va.). The Tennessee Associated Press Broadcasters Association gave him an award for Best News Writing in the state. Patrick also spent three years as a television news reporter at WWNY-TV, the CBS affiliate in Watertown, New York. He received awards from the New York Associated Press Broadcasters Association for best feature reporting and the Syracuse Press Club for best investigative reporting.
Before founding Story Center Films, Patrick served three years as president of Log Cabin Republicans. Log Cabin advocates for LGBTQ rights in the Republican Party on behalf of its 20,000 members. Managing a staff of six people and overseeing a $1.1 million annual budget, he coordinated Log Cabin’s lobbying efforts, developed and implemented the organization’s political strategy, and oversaw media outreach and fund-raising.