Sumner, MS, USA
Patrick Weems is a community builder, social entrepreneur, and philanthropy leader based in Sumner, MS. With more than 10 years of experience in racial justice and restorative justice work, Weems is leading transformational change that will last through the generations.
He co-founded the Summer Youth Institute, an experiential learning youth program for the William Winter Institute for Racial Reconciliation. He also co-founded and serves as director of the Emmett Till Interpretive Center, which uses art and storytelling to share the Emmett Till tragedy, facilitate racial healing and point us toward a new future. A graduate of the University of Mississippi, Weems holds a master’s degree from the Center for the Study of Southern Culture. He was recently awarded a Fellowship from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation.
FEATURED WORKIn his current work, Weems was tasked with developing a historic site by highlighting the connection of the community of Money, Mississippi, to the story of Emmett Till, a 14-year old boy who was kidnapped and horrifically murdered in 1955 and whose death and memory catalyzed the modern Civil Rights Movement.
Bryant's Grocery site of Emmett Till's interaction with Carolyn Bryant that led to his lynching in 1955. The store is now owned by a family that has decided to let it fall into disrepair.
Fourth historical marker put up at Graball Landing site of where Emmett Till's body came out of the Tallahatchie River.
Tallahatchie County Courthouse fully restored
Rev. Wheeler Parker, Emmett Till's last living cousin who was with him in Mississippi in 1955, speaking at the dedication of the 4th marker