“Over the years, Pat has been a deeply valued advisor to the Foundation,” said Skoll Foundation President and CEO Sally Osberg. “Her outstanding contributions have resulted in some tremendous opportunities for Skoll social entrepreneurs and key programming for the Skoll World Forum.”
Over the course of a long and distinguished career, Pat has worked as a journalist, producer, and media executive. She was the first woman President and CEO of PBS, and the first woman President of CNN Productions.
Earlier in her career, Pat worked as a news reporter and anchor in Boston and Washington, a national talk show host, and a White House correspondent. Behind the camera, she was the creator and producer of award-winning series and documentaries, many of which told the stories of women and their challenges and accomplishments.
Pat has received numerous awards and honors in recognition of her path-breaking work. She was inducted into the Broadcasting and Cable Hall of Fame in 2009, named one of the Most Powerful Women in Hollywood by Variety, and included in Newsweek‘s 2011 list of 150 Women Who Shake the World.
The Women’s Media Center gave Pat their first annual Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012; she also received the Sandra Day O’Connor Award for Leadership, as well as Oxford University’s prestigious Bodleian Medal.
In addition to the Skoll Fund, Pat is a dedicated member of several other non-profit boards. She is Chair of the Sundance Institute, a Board member of Acumen Fund, a founding member of Green Cross International, and a Trustee Emeritus of the Mayo Foundation—among others. Pat has worked with TED, the Skoll Foundation’s strategic partner, to co-curate and host the global TEDWomen conference, since she first brought the seed of the idea to TED in 2010.
Members of the Skoll community will recall Pat’s insightful contributions to various Skoll World Forum panels. At the 2016 Forum she moderated a compelling discussion with women leaders titled “Leading Through Adversity” and shared her key takeaways here.
Pat and her husband Scott Seydel have six children and 11 grandchildren and reside in New York City, New York and Atlanta, Georgia.