Tom Roush

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Thomas W. Roush is the film commissioner for the Pensacola area and director of the Pensacola International Film Festival, which he co-founded.

A 1981 graduate of Tate High School, Roush left Pensacola for Los Angeles in 1984, where he "lived out of a duffel bag, slept on floors, and scrounged out a meager existence working an assortment of odd jobs, from teaching guitar to bartending."[1] He moved to Tallahassee in 1992 and attended the Florida State University film school, graduating in 1994 with a bachelor's degree in film and television production, then moved back to L.A. and worked as acquisitions manager for Sony Pictures Entertainment.

He married in 1998 and returned to Pensacola in April 2000, the same month his son John was born, then received a master's degree from the University of West Florida in 2002.

He and former state legislator DeeDee Ritchie established the Pensacola International Film Festival in 2002 and held the first festival in 2003. Purpose, which Roush co-wrote during his time in Los Angeles, was one of the movies screened at the inaugural festival.


  1. "Cinematic vision." Pensacola News Journal, March 16, 2003.