Dione Gilmour is a renowned producer of wildlife films who has spent a large portion of her career heading the Natural History Unit of the Australian public broadcaster, ABC. Originally a primary school teacher, Dione became disillusioned with the state of the education system and decided to look for work in a field that had always interested her, biology.
Having presented children's programmes on maths and science for ABC, Dione approached the natural history department and was hired on a six week contract. Staunchly setting to on her researching and administration tasks, she never let her lack of biological training hold her back and after 18 months on overlapping short contracts, ABC employed her on a permanent basis.
Throughout the 1970s Dione began gaining more experience researching and, having got wind of the major BBC series afoot, wrote to Chris Parsons requesting to work on his seminal Life on Earth series (1979). Her determination paid off and Chris took her under his wing involving her in every side of the huge project.
Returning to ABC, Dione began work, trying to establish a firm footing for the fledgling Natural History Unit. Involving respected companies such as Oxford Scientific Films, Dione encouraged the production of high quality films that helped the unit build in reputation and popularity. Her major breakthrough came in 1988, with the release of the ABC and BBC co-production, The Nature of Australia. Over four years in the making, the series was a massive success both in Australia and internationally.
The following year she was appointed Chief Executive of the Unit and immediately had to save the whole enterprise from being sold to Television New Zealand. Over the following years she has been instrumental in the production of various award-winning films, working closely with friend and colleague David Parer on works such as Dragons of the Galapagos (1999).
Dione has chaired many committees, been an active member of several boards and is Director of Zoos Victoria, responsible for three world class zoos.