Photo of Megan Chao
Diversity and Inclusion, Entertainment, Health, Science, Social Justice


Megan Chao is a factual entertainment professional and science journalist with nearly two decades of experience specializing in documentaries.

She is currently directing Every 73 Seconds, a feature documentary about street harassment of women. She is also the showrunner on an untitled global sustainability documentary series that takes an aspirational approach to environmental issues.

Notable credits: Chao was supervising producer and editor on the critically-acclaimed Murder to Mercy: The Cyntoia Brown Story for Netflix, a 16-year odyssey that followed a family’s journey through the Tennessee justice system. This was based on the 2010 award-winning documentary, Me Facing Life, for Independent Lens and the 2016 series, Sentencing Children. She was supervising producer and editor on The Hunt for Dark Matter and The Earliest Americans for CuriosityStream. She was also a producer on ‘The Big Bang Machine’ for NOVA.

Chao has been a faculty member at USC Annenberg since 2010 and is faculty adviser for the award-winning documentary series, Impact, which broadcasts weekly on Spectrum News 1 and is distributed nationally through Spectrum Networks. She also serves as chair-elect for the Asian Pacific Islander Faculty and Staff Association (APIFSA).

Chao currently serves on the Board of Governors for the Television Academy, representing the documentary programming peer group. She is on the bylaws and activities committees and serves as chair of the Generative AI Impact on the Emmy Awards group, a subcommittee of the AI Task Force. She is a hyphenate active member in the Picture Editors peer group, as well.  

Chao is also a member of the Producers Guild of America, where she serves as one of the chairs for the Documentary and Nonfiction Committee.

She has a master’s degree in broadcast journalism from USC Annenberg and bachelor’s degrees in biology and nonfiction creative writing from the University of California at Riverside.