Fiona Dawson is an Emmy®-nominated multi-media director, producer and writer. She directed Transgender, at War and in Love commissioned by The New York Times and created the media project TransMilitary, which intimately shares the lives of American transgender troops risking discharge as they work to end the discriminatory ban upon their service. Fiona writes and produces for NBC News' NBC OUT and with her co-directors at SideXSide Studios, Fiona creates film to educate, entertain and inspire. As Regional Instructor for The Leader's Institute, Fiona facilitates team building events, Creating a Team Culture® workshops, and Fearless Presentations® classes.
Fiona has previously filmed stories in India on sex trafficking, prostitution and HIV/AIDS. She hosted segments for HereTV during the Republican and Democratic conventions, she is published in NBC OUT, Curve magazine, FTM Magazine, The Advocate, The Huffington Post and The New York Times. A British native and American immigrant, Fiona lived in Houston, Texas for 11 ½ years working in the nonprofit sector and later in corporate social responsibility for the bank BBVA Compass.
In 2015 she was honored by The White House for her work as an LGBT Artist Champion of Change. She was voted the city’s Female Grand Marshal for the 2009 LGBT Pride Parade, has served on the National Board of Directors of the Human Rights Campaign (HRC) and is currently on the Board of Directors for the National Lesbian & Gay Journalists Association (NLGJA) and a State Co-Chair, DMV region, for the Executive Women for Hillary. Fiona lives in the Washington D.C. suburbs of Silver Spring, Maryland with her rescue dog, Maizie Rai.
Advocating for human equality has always been at the root of Fiona's endeavors. Since 2004 when she came out as gay, Fiona has been particularly focused on working for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community.
Due to her involvement in promoting LGBT rights in Houston, she was elected the 2009 Female Grand Marshal for that year's Pride Parade.
In 2015 Fiona was one of nine LGBT Artists awarded by the White House as a Champion of Change. In the whitehouse.gov blog, Fiona says, "Today, as a bisexual woman it's important for me to be visible with my own sexual orientation to help end bi-phobia, but my work is focused on advocating for transgender rights. Through TransMilitary I wish to not only assist in lifting the ban on transgender people serving, but also contribute to changing how people are viewed in general. I believe when we come to know a diversity of mighty soldiers, sailors, airmen and marines honorably serving our country, society can see that they and their civilian counterparts deserve the equal rights and respect they so fiercely protect."
As Fiona believes visibility helps end stigma and discrimination, in 2012 she came out as bisexual via this video on YouTube: