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Cindy Abel
Filmmaker, speaker and writer Cindy Abel formed Atlantis Moon Productions to develop projects that launch conversations and impact popular culture.

She directed and produced the award-winning Breaking Through, a documentary in which openly LGBT elected officials share their stories of self-doubt and triumph over multiple barriers ranging from race and poverty to gender and sexual orientation, revealing a deeply personal, rarely-seen side of politicians and gay people. As they share how they have come to live open and fulfilled lives, they bring hope to those from all walks of life who are struggling. Breaking Through is available OnDemand (check local listings), iTunes, Amazon and DVD and continues to screen at festivals as well as at universities, conferences and companies.

Abel's current film in production, Surviving The Silence: Love and Impossible Choices, tells the story of Colonel Patsy Thompson who presided over the board that dismissed Colonel Grethe Cammermeyer from the military for being a lesbian. (Col. Cammermeyer’s experience was told in her book Serving in Silence, made into a movie starring Glenn Close in 1995.) What was hidden from the public until a few months ago is that Col. Thompson is also a lesbian. And yet, Col. Cammermeyer considers her a hero. In addition to this surprising revelation and Col. Thompson’s heart-rending experience of presiding over the board, she and her wife of 30 years, Barbara Brass, bring to life the enduring impact of the anti-gay laws and attitudes and reveal how they made love last despite the burden of the required secrecy and personal differences.

Abel previously served as co-chair of the Gay & Lesbian Victory Fund, Vice-Chair of Atlanta Film Festival and Vice President of Communications of Women in Film & Television Atlanta. She can be reached at

Entries by Cindy Abel

Don't Blame the Bible

(0) Comments | Posted June 24, 2015 | 5:01 PM

I was sitting on a plane, torn between the need to work and the desire to sleep, and the passenger next to me decided to chat. It was the typical "Where are you headed? Work or fun?" conversation until I mentioned screening BREAKING THROUGH at an upcoming film...

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Hidden History Helped End 'Don't Ask, Don't Tell'

(0) Comments | Posted July 23, 2014 | 9:49 PM

A reporter covering recent LGBT strides toward equality recently asked me, "Are you surprised at how fast things are moving?" When I replied that I think they're actually moving pretty slowly, he looked at me quizzically. After all, the past four years have been one victory after another, celebrating marriages...

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National LGBT Organizations: Welcome to the South

(1) Comments | Posted May 16, 2014 | 6:31 PM

For years southern states have been treated as the step-children of the LGBT movement. Few national organizations invested any real money, compared to other parts of the country where wins were more predictable. Even gay folks said "we won't get equality til the whole country has equality."

But then, openly...

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Gay-Bashed by Allies: Dirty Tricks in Politics

(7) Comments | Posted March 28, 2014 | 2:35 PM

As director and producer of the film Breaking Through, I interviewed 24 openly LGBT elected officials across the country, who shared their stories of overcoming tremendous barriers to win office. I was inspired by their strength and candor as they revealed their personal struggles and the multiple barriers...

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The 20th Anniversary of a New Year's Resolution

(3) Comments | Posted January 3, 2013 | 6:06 PM

Twenty years ago I was out to a select group, including my parents, but I didn't want anyone else to know. On New Year's Day 1993, my father came into the room as I was packing to return home after a family visit. "You must think there's something wrong with...

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Dan Cathy, Thank You for Coming Out

(109) Comments | Posted August 9, 2012 | 1:33 PM

I think it's great that Dan Cathy has so proudly come out against marriage equality. Until recently, there were fair-minded folks who weren't totally convinced Chick-fil-A fed discrimination. Now, even apolitical friends joke about how much they'll miss the tasty sandwiches or peach milkshakes.

The irony is that Cathy was...

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How I Convinced Myself to Stay in a Violent Relationship

(14) Comments | Posted January 31, 2012 | 11:29 AM

A couple of weeks ago, I got a black eye -- the third one in my life. I'd distractedly walked full-force into a glass door at a client's office. Though nothing was broken or cut, it made me reflect on the first two times my face had been bruised and...

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Jerry Sandusky Cover-Up: How the 'Gay Factor' May Have Played a Role

(85) Comments | Posted November 17, 2011 | 9:28 PM

What if Mike McQueary had walked into the locker room and seen Jerry Sandusky raping a 10-year-old girl?

What if the investigators were listening to a mom confronting Sandusky about showering with her daughter? Would the Campus Police and County DA have dropped the case?

It's doubtful. Someone, somewhere,...

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Teaching LGBT History

(26) Comments | Posted October 8, 2011 | 12:23 PM

As America's students settle into a new school year, they'll also be returning to their social studies classes -- courses ostensibly about teaching students about history and how it applies to civic life. But when it comes to lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) contributions to our history, these stories...

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