Press Screening of New Documentary Film Philadelphia, America’s First World Heritage City



Global Philadelphia Association and the City of Philadelphia invite the press for a special screening of the documentary film, Philadelphia, America’s First World Heritage City on Tuesday, July 12, 2016 at 9 am at the Independence Visitors Center Ballroom, located on the mezzanine level (2nd Floor) of the Independence Visitor Center on the corner of 6th & Market St, Philadelphia, PA 19106.

Philadelphia, America’s First World Heritage City, a 28-minute documentary directed by the Emmy Award Winning Filmmaker, Sam Katz, and narrated by Award Winning Author Dr. David Brownlee, who is also Professor of 19th Century European Art, at the University of Pennsylvania, was created to commemorate the historic designation of Philadelphia as the First World Heritage City in the United States, by the Organization of World Heritage Cities. Sam Katz’ film offers an exceptional glimpse into the formation and development of Philadelphia, illustrating the city’s leadership role in the fields of art, transportation, urban planning, medicine and more. The film spans centuries, touching upon the formation of some of Philadelphia’s unique neighborhoods and how far Philadelphia has come from the idealistic plan envisioned by William Penn in the 17th century. Now, with a World Heritage City designation, Philadelphia should fully embrace its rich heritage as Dr. Brownlee so eloquently reminds viewers.

Sam Katz will be available for Q&A following the film screening.

About Sam Katz:
Sam Katz is a lifelong Philadelphian who has had a unique career in public and project finance, venture capital, civic affairs, development, politics and documentary filmmaking.
Sam spent 20 years as CEO of Public Financial Management and worked with cities, counties and state governments throughout the nation on financial distress and capital funding. He structured the financing for sports facilities including the Wachovia Center and Camden Yards. More recently he chaired the State authority that exercised oversight over Philadelphia’s finances. And he was a candidate for Mayor (1991, 1999, 2003) and Governor (1994).
Over the past eight years, Sam has been producing documentary films on the history of Philadelphia including the 14 part EMMY award winning series, “Philadelphia: The Great Experiment” and “Urban Trinity: The Story of Catholic Philadelphia.” These films are available online at and are free of charge.
Sam and Connie Katz have lived in West Mt. Airy for 35 years and are active members of Germantown Jewish Centre. They have four grown children, two of whom live in Philadelphia, and two grandsons.
About David B. Brownlee, Ph.D.
David B. Brownlee, Ph.D., FSAH, is the Frances Shapiro-Weitzenhoffer Professor of the History of Art at the University of Pennsylvania, where he has taught for his entire career. A historian of modern architecture and urbanism in Europe and America, his many writings on Philadelphia topics include Building the City Beautiful: The Benjamin Franklin Parkway and the Philadelphia Museum of Art (1989), Louis I. Kahn: In the Realm of Architecture (with David G. De Long, 1991), Making a Modern Classic: The Architecture of the Philadelphia Museum of Art (1997), Out of the Ordinary: Robert Venturi, Denise Scott Brown and Associates: Architecture, Urbanism, Design (with David De Long and Kathryn Hiesinger, 2001), and The Barnes Foundation: Two Buildings, One Mission (2012). His scholarship has won five major publication awards, and he was named a Fellow of the Society of Architectural Historians in 2015. Brownlee is a recipient of the University of Pennsylvania's Lindback Award for Distinguished Teaching. In 2007-2012 he was editor of the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians. Active in public service, Brownlee served a term on Historic Preservation Board of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and for 15 years on the Philadelphia Historical Commission, where he chaired the designation committee. He has been a member of the board of the Philadelphia Society for the Preservation of Landmarks and is now a member of the board of the Preservation Alliance of Greater Philadelphia. He was a founding member of the Design Advocacy Group of Philadelphia, which he now serves as a vice chair.

Produced by Emmy Award Winning Filmmaker Sam Katz
Narrated and Written by Dr. David Brownlee, Award Winning Author and University of Pennsylvania Professor
Contact: Graziella DiNuzzo, [email protected] 609.680.7670

About Philadelphia World Heritage City Project:
A city of firsts, Philadelphia is also now the first World Heritage City in the United States. As such, The Philadelphia World Heritage City project (PWHCP), a partnership between Global Philadelphia Association and the City of Philadelphia, has emerged to promote Philadelphia’s esteemed cultural and economic contribution to the world, and its need for continued historical preservation. The PWHCP invites the world to invest, live, work, study and visit Philadelphia. Today, Philadelphians can share and celebrate the honor of being a part of a World Heritage City.
About Global Philadelphia Association:
Global Philadelphia Association, a 501 (C) 3 non-profit organization was created to assist and to encourage greater interaction among the many organizations and people who are engaged in international activity in the Greater Philadelphia region and to promote the development of an international consciousness within the region and enhance the region’s global profile.