Dee Mosbacher

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Dee Mosbacher

Diane "Dee" Mosbacher, MD, Ph.D., (born January 13, 1949 in Houston, Texas) is an American filmmaker, lesbian feminist activist, and practicing psychiatrist. In 1993, she founded Woman Vision, a nonprofit organization to promote equal treatment of all people through the production and use of educational media, including video.[1]

To date, Mosbacher has directed or produced nine documentary films through Woman Vision, each having to do with LGBTQ or women's rights issues. In 1994, she directed and produced Straight From the Heart, which was nominated for an Academy Award.[2] Altogether, Mosbacher's films have received a total of 46 awards — by LGBT, Black, Latina, Latin American, and Aging Media film festivals, including best of show award, grand jury awards, and audience awards, in the US, the UK, Australia, Cuba, Mexico, and Italy.[1]

In 2012, Woman Vision launched The Last Closet, a web-based campaign and video project to end homophobia in men's professional sports.[3]

Oscar nomination for Straight from the Heart[edit]

In 1995, Mosbacher co-directed and co-produced with Frances Reid Straight From the Heart, a documentary that explored relationships between straight parents and their gay children. The film includes emotional interviews with a straight couple who didn't approve of homosexuality until they learned that their son, who was dying of AIDS, was gay. The film was nominated for an Academy Award.[4]

Training Rules[edit]

In 2010, Mosbacher co-directed and co-produced with Fawn Yacker the documentary film Training Rules, an hour-long movie about Rene Portland, a women's basketball coach from Penn State University. Portland allegedly banned lesbians from playing on her team. The film contains interviews with former athletes and faculty members at Penn State who say that Portland actively pursued and harassed members of her team whom she suspected were gay.

Training Rules was shown at dozens of film festivals in the United States, Canada, and Europe, and won three audience choice awards.[5]


Mosbacher served on the Pitzer College Board of Trustees from 1994 to 2002. In 2011, she established the Mosbacher Fund for Media Studies and the Mosbacher/Gartrell Center for Media Experimentation and Activism at Pitzer College.[6][7]

Personal life[edit]

Mosbacher is the daughter of the late Robert Mosbacher (1927–2010), who served as U.S. Secretary of Commerce under George H.W. Bush from 1989 to 1992. Mosbacher and her father had a close relationship despite the Republican Party's largely anti-gay position. In 1992, on a day when the two were both giving commencement speeches, she told a Washington Post reporter that she began her speech: "Dad and I had breakfast this morning. We looked at each other's speeches. He would have used mine but he's not a lesbian. I would have used his, but I'm not a Republican."[8] Dr. Mosbacher spoke out against the gay-bashing and anti-woman focus of the Republican Party's 1992 campaign.[9][10]

Mosbacher is married to Nanette Gartrell, MD,[11] a researcher, psychiatrist, and author of the 2008 book My Answer Is NO... If That's Okay With You[12]


  • 1985: Closets are Health Hazards: Gay and Lesbian Physicians Come Out - Director/Producer
  • 1991: Lesbians on Practice, Patients, and Power - Director/Producer
  • 1994: Straight From the Heart - Director/Producer (with Frances Reid and Deborah Hoffman)
  • 1995: Out for a Change: Addressing Homophobia in Women's Sports - Director/Producer
  • 1996: All God's Children - Director/Producer (with Sylvia Rhue and Frances Reid)
  • 2001: De Colores - Executive Producer
  • 2002: Radical Harmonies: The Story of Women's Music - Director/Producer (with Boden Sandstrom and June Millington)
  • 2006: No Secret Anymore: The Times of Del Martin and Phyllis Lyon - Co-Producer (with Joan E. Biren)
  • 2009: Training Rules - Director/Producer (with Fawn Yacker)[1]


  • 1992: National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, Creating Change Award
  • 1995: Jerry E. Berg Leadership Award, from the Human Rights Campaign Fund
  • 1997: Lambda Legal Defense Liberty Award[13]
  • 2002: San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival, Best Documentary Audience Award for Radical Harmonies[14]
  • 2009: Barbara Gittings Memorial Award[15]
  • 2014: Mathew O. Tobriner Public Service award from the Legal Aid Society, Employment Law Center[16]


External links[edit]