Expert Topic

Digital Storytelling

The enormous growth of the worldwide web and the expansion of broadband has changed the way we communicate, fundamentally altering the way we do business.

As online video capabilities increase, companies, nonprofits, and other organizations are turning to video as a high-impact way to communicate their message to stakeholders: customers, clients, investors, prospective employees and others via the web. 

In this new environment, digital storytelling – a reality-based video presentation – is very much on the rise. 

Meet the Expert

About Jonathan

  • 30-year TV news career, including staff producer for NBC’s "Dateline," encompassing new delivery platforms for digital storytelling.
  • Recipient of three Peabody Awards, three duPont-Columbia Awards, and a Certificate of Special Merit from the Academy Awards.
  • Won his third duPont-Columbia Award for producing the PBS special "War Stories from Ward #7D," which followed the struggles of Iraq War veterans suffering from traumatic brain injury. In 2011, he was a finalist for a Gerald Loeb Award for financial reporting. 
  • Produced the highest-rated program in CNBC history, "Marijuana Inc: Inside America’s Pot Industry." Hour-long documentary has aired more than 100 times and was nominated for a national Emmy.
  • Other productions include "Tom Brokaw Reports: Boomer$!," two-hour documentary on the legacy and challenges of the baby boom generation, reported by NBC Senior Correspondent Tom Brokaw, with whom Dann collaborated for nearly a year as program creator and senior producer.


President • Jon Dann Communications
Apr, 2013 — Present

Company portfolio includes video profiles of corporations, nonprofits, and others. 
  • "Intelligent Operations" – Produced proprietary corporate video for Cisco Systems, Dec. 2013.
  • "Malaria Breakthrough" – Produced mini-documentary for UC-Berkeley and Studio B Films on a breakthrough malaria treatment funded by a $40 million grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
  • Other clients have included WaterSmart Software, and XOMA, a Berkeley-based biotech company.
Independent Producer and Journalist • Documentaries, News Segments, Investigative Stories
2001 — 2013

NBC's Rock Center with Brian Williams, March 2012:
  • "The Death Zone"  – Researched, produced, wrote lead story about a cluster of deaths among the world’s best extreme skiers, March 2012.

PBS' Need to Know, July 2011:
  • "Waste Away"  – Produced 16-minute lead segment on a little-known nuclear waste dump a half-mile below the New Mexican desert.

CNBC Long Form Unit, Jan. 2007-July 2010:
  • "Goldman Sachs: Power & Peril"
  • "Tom Brokaw Reports: Boomer$!"
  • "Marijuana Inc."
  • "Swoosh: Inside Nike"

KCET's California Connection, Jan. 2004-Dec. 2006:
  • Produced documentary and in-depth news segments.

Los Angeles Times, July 2001:
  • "At FBI, a Traitor Helped in Search for Subversives" – Co-authored Sunday front page lead article on convicted spy Robert Hansen, who even as he was selling secrets to the Soviets, was a supervisor in an '80s program to monitor U.S. citizens' activities. Lengthy investigative report was the culmination of Dann's decade-long FOIA request.
Staff Producer • NBC Dateline
Jan, 1998 — Jan, 2001
  • Produced numerous segments, including those that aired on highest-rated evening TV programs.
  • Produced investigative reports as well as tight-deadline news reports.
Senior Producer • KRON-TV
Jan, 1980 — Dec, 1996
  • Senior producer & staff producer for numerous productions, including hour-long documentaries and investigative reports.
Assignment Editor/Producer • KQED
Jan, 1976 — Dec, 1979
  • Directed daily news coverage.


Stanford University
BA, History, 1974


  • George Foster Peabody Awards (3): "I Want to Go Home" (1989); "Climate of Death" (1983); "Broken Arrow: Can A Nuclear Weapons Accident Happen Here?" (1980)
  • duPont-Columbia Awards (3): "War Stories from Ward #7D" (2006); "The War Within" (1983); "Climate of Death" (1984)
  • George Polk Award: "Broken Arrow: Can A Nuclear Weapons Accident Happen Here?" (1981)
  • Robert F. Kennedy Award: "The War Within" (1982)
  • Academy Awards, Certificate of Special Merit: "The War Within" (1984)
  • Project Censored's "Most Censored" News Story of the Year, 1986: "Heat on the Left" 
  • Ohio State Award: "Climate of Death" (1985)
  • Winner of 12 Regional Emmy Awards
  • National Emmy Nominations: "Marijuana Inc." (2008), "Swoosh!: Inside Nike" (2010), both for CNBC.
  • Gerald Loeb Award, finalist: "Goldman Sachs: Power & Peril," CNBC , 2011


  • Screener for the duPont-Columbia Awards for Broadcast Journalism
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