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Participant Media Promotes Sam Neswick to Chief Operating Officer

LOS ANGELES (March 2, 2016) – Participant Media has promoted Sam Neswick to chief operating officer. The announcement was made today by Participant founder and chairman Jeff Skoll and CEO David Linde. Neswick will report to Linde.

As COO, Neswick will oversee Participant’s corporate strategy and operations, expand and develop the company’s multiplatform content and distribution capabilities, and collaborate with the senior executive team to further integrate the company’s social impact agenda into each line of business. He will continue to be responsible for strategic planning, investments and corporate development in his new role. Neswick recently drove Participant’s investment in Amblin Partners, a new film, television and digital content company led by Steven Spielberg. Neswick also represents Participant as a board member for three of its portfolio investments: Evolution Media Partners, Cineflix Media, and Me to We. He joined Participant in 2014 as senior vice president of Strategic Planning and was promoted to chief strategy officer last year.

“Since joining Participant, Sam has made significant contributions to the company,” commented Linde. “He has proven to be a trusted and valued advisor to Jeff and me as we seek to build on 2015’s record year and continue to expand the company’s content portfolio and international reach.”

“It’s an exciting time to be at Participant Media, capping off a year of tremendous success and growth,” said Neswick. “I’m grateful to have the opportunity to work with Jeff, David and the entire Participant team as we look forward to generating new content and driving positive social impact around the world.”

2015 marked a stellar year for Participant Media films, with award recognition, box office success and critical acclaim for both its narrative and documentary slate. Spotlight won two Academy Awards® including Best Picture and Original Screenplay, and Bridge of Spies was recognized with a Best Supporting Actor win for Mark Rylance.

Participant films were also front and center at the Independent Spirit Awards, with multiple wins including Best Feature for Spotlight and Best Documentary for The Look of Silence as well as Best Male Lead and Best Supporting Male for Abraham Attah and Idris Elba, respectively, for Beasts of No Nation. Spotlight continued its streak at the Spirits, recognized for Best Ensemble and Editing, Tom McCarthy for Director, and McCarthy and Josh Singer for Screenplay. The wins were a culmination of a tremendous award season for the company.

Participant’s 2016 film slate includes Peter Berg’s Deepwater Horizon with Lionsgate; J.S. Bayona’s A Monster Calls with Focus Features; Pablo Larrain’s Neruda; Derek Cianfrance’s The Light Between Oceans with DreamWorks Pictures; Denial starring Rachel Weisz, Tom Wilkinson, and Timothy Spall, with Bleecker Street; Middle School, based on James Patterson’s best-seller series, with CBS Films; Ric Roman Waugh’s Shot Caller; Alex Gibney’s Zero Days with Magnolia Pictures; Morgan Neville’s The Music of Strangers: Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble with The Orchard; and Presenting Princess Shaw with Magnolia Pictures.

Prior to joining Participant, Neswick held senior positions at The Walt Disney Company in corporate strategy and business development, including responsibility for the landmark acquisition of Lucasfilm and strategic expansion in Asia. Prior to Disney, Neswick worked in management consulting at Bain & Company. He holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a B.A. from Harvard College.


About Participant Media

Participant Media (http://www.participantmedia.com/) is a leading media company dedicated to entertainment that inspires and compels social change. Founded in 2004 by Jeff Skoll, Participant combines the power of a good story well told with opportunities for viewers to get involved. Participant’s more than 70 films, including SpotlightContagion, LincolnThe HelpHe Named Me Malala, The Look of Silence, CITIZENFOURFood, Inc., and An Inconvenient Truth, have collectively earned 50 Academy Award® nominations and 11 wins, including Best Picture for Spotlight. Participant has also launched more than a dozen original series, including “Please Like Me,” Emmy® Award-winning “Hit Record On TV with Joseph Gordon-Levitt,” and “Fortitude,” for its television network, Pivot (http://www.pivot.tv/). Participant’s digital hub, TakePart (http://www.TakePart.com), serves millions of socially conscious consumers each month with daily articles, videos and opportunities to take action. Follow Participant Media on Twitter at @Participant and on Facebook


Jennifer St. Clair, Participant Media




Jayna Zelman, Rubenstein Communications




Katie Schroeder, Rubenstein Communications