“Well-behaved women seldom make history…”
Amber Lyon is a three-time Emmy Award- winning journalist and filmmaker obsessed with hackers, human and animal rights, and revolutions.
Amber grew up in St. Louis, MO, and attended the University of Missouri School of Journalism. While a student, Amber produced “Battered Justice”, a three-part series on the judicial system’s response to domestic violence offenders . Amber uncovered a judge who was illegally charging domestic violence victims, who were trying to protect their children from abusers, thousands of dollars in Guardian ad litem and court fees. The series earned her an SPJ Heart of America Award and Missouri Broadcasters’ Association Certificate of Merit.
Upon graduation with a degree in Broadcast Journalism, Amber moved to Tucson where she covered immigration and drug cartel border issues for the NBC affiliate, KVOA. While at KVOA, Amber earned three Emmy Awards for her creative storytelling, and an Edward R. Murrow award for an investigation on how mothers‘ sleeping habits were responsible for more than half of Tucson’s infant deaths.
After Tucson, Amber moved to Guatemala where she learned Spanish and volunteered to teach journalism at the local TV station, Cable DX. While in Central America, Amber also researched human rights abuses at Mexico’s ‘other border’ with Guatemala.
Amber joined CNN in June 2010. She was the only reporter to broadcast live while scuba diving in a HAZMAT suit from beneath the oil spill in order to connect viewers with what was happening beneath the BP disaster. Her reporting contributed to CNN winning a Peabody Award for coverage of the spill.
Lyon has reported extensively on domestic child sex trafficking. In 2010, She investigated the sex trafficking of domestic minors on the online classified site, Craigslist. Days after her report aired on CNN, 17 state Attorneys General quoted findings from Lyon’s report in a letter to Craigslist demanding the closure of their Adult Services section. Less than a month after the CNN investigation aired, Craigslist shut down their Adult Services section in the U.S. and has since closed the section worldwide. Lyon was honored with a prestigious Gracie Award for women in media and a nominated as a finalist for a Livingston Award for Young Journalists.
Lyon also reported for and co-produced a documentary on child sex trafficking entitled “Selling the Girl Next Door”. The hour-long documentary gave viewers a raw view into the disturbing world of underage American girls caught up in the violent sex trade.
Lyon has a passion for exposing human rights violations against protesters during revolutions. For her documentary, ‘iRevolution’, Lyon examines social media’s critical role in galvanizing the revolutions and exposing human rights abuse in Egypt, Tunisia, and Bahrain. ‘iRevolution’ won a 2012 New York Festivals International Television and Film Gold World Medal Award and Lyon was nominated as a Livingston Award Finalist for the documentary.
Lyon continues to investigate ongoing cases of excessive use of police force against journalists and protesters in the United States. Lyon was crushed underneath a crowd in Chicago, directly shot at with less lethal weapons in Anaheim, and forced to inhale pepper spray more times than she can count, all while using submersion journalism to photo-document protesters in the U.S. for an upcoming book.
In her spare time, Amber loves photography, traveling and embarking on spontaneous adventures. She has a passion for scuba diving and is a PADI Advanced Open Water certified and ERDI HAZWOPER diver.