Patreese Johnson

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Interview Date(s):Monday, October 12, 2015
Location:Rutgers University-Newark
Transcript(s):PDF icon transcript
Patreese Johnson is a femme-identified poet. She is the youngest of four brothers and one sister, and she grew up as the youngest on the block in her tight-knit community in Newark, New Jersey. She is fiercely empathetic with a big heart. While incarcerated after fighting off a street harasser in New York City (a story told in the documentary Out in the Night), she received her GED and ran a support group for women who were survivors of domestic violence. Since her release, she has enrolled at Essex County Community College, studying for Associates degree in Liberal Arts. She has been touring nationally with the film and spoke at the Creating Change Conference in Denver in February 2015. More recently, Patreese was asked to speak at the Sadie Nash Leadership Project in Newark, NJ. Patreese dreams of opening a spa one day “so that women will have a place to take a break from the every- day struggles of life.” She is currently working two part-time jobs, one as a personal assistant to children’s author, Jacqueline Woodson.
Patreese has spoken at the Los Angeles Film Festival, Frameline LGBT Film Festival, ImageOut, the University of California – San Diego for The Nicholas Papadopoulos Endowed Lecture in Gay & Lesbian Studies, Baltimore LGBT Film Festival, the Malcolm X Library in San Diego, New York City’s Maysles Cinema, Toshi Reagon’s Word*Rock*Sword Festival, the Athena Film Festival, Human Rights Watch Film Festival, Washington DC’s Reel Affirmations, No Selves to Defend exhibit in Philadelphia, Columbia Universities African American Policy Forum and at the Envision screening with the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner on Human Rights, as well as dozens of film festivals.

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