McCabe Lecture: Dawn Porter '88

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Award-winning producer and director Dawn Porter '88 discussed documentary filmmaking and how Swarthmore shaped her career during this year's McCabe Lecture. Porter is the co-founder of Trilogy Films, a film and television production company based in New York that specializes in social justice documentaries and independent feature films.

Porter's recent film, Gideon's Armypremiered at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival, where it won the award for "best edited U.S. documentary." The film, which aired on HBO, follows three young public defenders in the Deep South during their daily mission to counsel hundreds of defendants through the strained criminal justice system. Other Trilogy projects include Spies of Mississippi for PBS and a documentary about celebrity chef Alexandra Guarnaschelli, for the Cooking Channel.

Porter's numerous awards include the 2011 Creative Promise Award by the Tribeca All Access program. Realscreen named her one of their 2012 "Doc Hot Shots 15" emerging directors to watch.

After graduating from Swarthmore with a degree in political science, Porter earned a J.D. from Georgetown Law Center. She was a practicing attorney at Baker & Hostetler and ABC Television Networks before beginning her documentary career.