Dawson’s Project Highlights Transgender SPARTA Members and Allied Service Members
Washington, DC – Ms. Fiona Dawson, a longtime friend and supporter of SPARTA who has documented the journeys of transgender service members, is one of the LGBT artists who will be honored by the White House on Monday as a “Champion of Change.” Dawson is being honored specifically for the film Transgender, at War and in Love, about SPARTA members Logan Ireland (Air Force) and Laila Villanueva (Army), commissioned by the New York Times and produced by Dawson in partnership with SideXSide Studios.
The short film can be viewed at www.bitly.com/loganandlaila.
The White House’s Champions of Change program recognizes “everyday Americans who are making positive changes in their communities.” This upcoming event honors individuals who are making a difference in their communities and advancing LGBT rights through art. Dawson was selected because of her tremendous work and leadership, and will be honored at an event at The White House on Monday, November 23.
“I owe a huge thank you to SPARTA for their trust and confidence over the years in making the film possible,” said Dawson. “Without my relationships with SPARTA members I would not have been able to tell Logan and Laila's compelling stories.”
“However, our work is not done,” she continued. “The full length documentary needs to be made so the world may truly understand the depth of commitment from our American transgender soldiers, sailors, airmen, marines, and Coast Guardsmen. TransMilitary is in the final stretch of producing the feature film that will show how a mighty but under-resourced team completed the mission to achieve open transgender service.”
“Fiona is a remarkably gifted artist and powerful ally to the transgender military community,” said Allyson Robinson, Army veteran and SPARTA Director of Policy. “We are so proud that the White House is recognizing her contributions in creating gripping video that brings to life the real people who serve our country in silence.”
About SPARTA: Founded in 2013, SPARTA is an association of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people who currently serve or have served in the U.S. armed forces and their families. Our mission is to advocate for and support our actively serving LGBT service members, veterans, and their families. As a membership organization, SPARTA exists by and for the LGBT military community. The name SPARTA originated as an acronym for “Servicemembers, Partners, and Allies for Respect and Tolerance for All.”
Media Contact: Sue Fulton