Upon request, the speakers below can attend virtual Q&A events with filmmakers Patrick Sammon and Bennett Singer.
Gary Alinder (Bay Area) – As a young activist and Gay Liberation Front member living in the Bay Area, Alinder was part of a group of protesters who invaded the APA’s 1970 convention at the San Francisco Civic Center.
Rev. Magora Kennedy (New York City) – In the early 1950s, Magora Kennedy faced a stark choice after her mother discovered that Magora was interested in girls: get married or be institutionalized. Kennedy chose to get married—at 14. She later got involved in the women’s movement, the civil rights movement (including as a member of the Black Panther Party), and the Gay Liberation movement. Kennedy participated in the Stonewall uprising and was one of seven open lesbians who appeared on The David Susskind Show in 1971, arguing that the medical establishment had “made a mistake” with its mental-illness label for homosexuality. She is featured in the new exhibition “Not Another Second,” which tells the stories of twelve LGBT elders who lost decades in the closet. Read a 2021 New York Times article on this groundbreaking exhibit.
Don Kilhefner (Los Angeles) – Kilhefner played a leading role in the protest that took place at a conference on aversion therapy at the Biltmore Hotel in Los Angeles in October 1970. This event was filmed and is an essential scene in CURED. The co-founder of the Los Angeles Community Services Center, Kilhefner continues his work as a community organizer and Jungian psychotherapist in Los Angeles.
Dr. Richard Pillard (Boston) – Pillard was a gay psychiatrist, based in Boston, who advised Dr. Lawrence Hartmann as he worked to persuade the New England branch of the APA to pass a resolution asking the APA to change the DSM classification of homosexuality. He was the country’s first openly gay psychiatrist.
Dr. Charles Silverstein (New York City) – Charles Silverstein spent seven years in thrice-weekly therapy sessions, hoping to “cure” his attraction to men and safeguard his job as a public-school teacher. He eventually became a Gay Liberation activist and psychologist. In 1973, he was invited to make a scientific case for changing the DSM to the APA’s Nomenclature Committee and was featured on an episode of 60 Minutes that examined the DSM debate. Co-author of The Joy of Gay Sex, Silverstein continues his work as a psychotherapist in New York City.