Brian Dawson is an American filmmaker, director of photography and designer based in Brooklyn.
This year, he was named a Sundance Institute Stories of Change Fellow. Last year, he held an academic appointment as a Fellow in the Investigative Reporting Program at the University of California, Berkeley. In 2016, he was named a National Geographic Explorer.
As a filmmaker, Dawson has contributed to, among others, Netflix, National Geographic Magazine, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Al Jazeera, The Atlantic, The Guardian and Outside Magazine, and has worked in China, Democratic Republic of Congo, England, Germany, India, Jordan, Kenya, Nepal, Rwanda, South Africa, South Sudan, Switzerland, US, Uganda and Vietnam.
He’s collaborated on projects with The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Stanford University, The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, Sidewalk Labs, Marie Stopes, the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Hewlett Foundation.
He is the recipient of fellowships and grants from the Knight Foundation, the Carnegie Corporation, the Skoll Foundation and National Geographic Society.
Previously, Dawson was a designer at IDEO in San Francisco. Before that he led the design of a venture-backed startup in New York City.
He grew up the youngest of four in northern New York, the son of a forestry professor.