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Alan Fisher is a Scottish broadcast journalist, who works for international news channel, Al Jazeera English and is based at its News Centre in Washington DC.
Born and raised in Motherwell, he wrote for his local newspaper, 'The Motherwell Times' while still attending the town's Dalziel High School. On leaving school, he was accepted to study journalism at what was then Napier College of Commerce and Technology in Edinburgh. On completing the course, he received a number of job offers but opted to join Moray Firth Radio in Inverness. He worked there for 11 months before moving to Northsound Radio in Aberdeen. His work - including a number of exclusive reports and interviews - brought him to the attention of the bosses at what was then Grampian Television (now STV North) and he was offered the post of reporter/presenter on the main evening news programme North Tonight. His time there included covering stories such as the 1986 Chinook helicopter disaster, the Piper Alpha oil rig explosion and Aberdeen FC's 1990 Scottish FA Cup win. After six years in the North East, he moved back to the Central Belt of Scotland as a reporter and regular presenter of Scotland Today on Scottish Television. During his time with the Glasgow based broadcaster, he reported from Saudi Arabia, the Gulf and Dubai ahead of the first Gulf War; and from Kuwait and Southern Iraq in its immediate aftermath. He also presented an investigation into a sinister extortion racket operating across Scotland, which led to questions being asked in the House of Commons.
When GMTV took over the Breakfast franchise on ITV, he was appointed Ireland correspondent setting up its bureau in Belfast. In three years in Northern Ireland he reported on a number of significant violent incidents and killings including the Shankill Road Bombing, the Greysteel and Loughinisland Massacres as well as travelling to report on war in Bosnia. He was also the regular stand-in correspondent in the Washington DC bureau. Having covered the first steps in the Northern Ireland peace process, he was transferred to London in 1995 on his appointment as Senior News Correspondent. In 1999, he was promoted to Chief Correspondent. While at GMTV, he reported on some of the world's biggest news stories, from the bombings in Bali and the invasion of Afghanistan to the London 7/7 attacks as well as the Death of Diana, Princess of Wales, becoming a familiar face on British TV screens. His coverage of the discovery of a missing schoolgirl in Brighton, live on air, was a significant part of GMTV's win in the National Television awards.
He moved to Al Jazeera English before its launch, based at its London News Centre and has reported from across the globe including Afghanistan, Israel, Lebanon, Pakistan and many countries across Europe. His coverage from the war in Georgia was nominated for a number of awards. His reports were also part of the International News Emmy nominations Al Jazeera English received for its coverage in Georgia and during the Israeli offensive in Gaza. He was a significant part of the team which covered the Egyptian Revolution for which the channel won a prestigious Peabody Award. A frequent blogger and Twitter user @AlanFisher, he is also a regular contributor to the station's website. On August 1st 2011, he announced via his website and later on Twitter that he had been appointed Senior Correspondent for Al Jazeera to be based in the Washington DC News Centre. In August 2012, he anchored the station's coverage of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida. And in October 2012, co-anchored the station's coverage of the US Presidential and vice-Presidential debates.
He is a columnist with the highly regarded on-line current affairs magazine Scottish Review and is a patron of the Young UK Programme which aims to stretch the minds and broaden the horizons of young people. For his work with the programme, he was awarded 'The Inveramsay Medal'. He is a former trustee and member of the board of the charity The Institute of Contemporary Scotland. An accomplished conference host, he has spoken at many International events on the role of the media and coverage of breaking news. He has been a guest lecturer at the London School of Economics Summer School and spoken to journalism students around the world. In 2010, he earned a Master of Arts Degree (MA) in Mass Communications from the University of Leicester in the UK and has contributed a chapter to an academic book on the reporting of the 2011 revolutions in North Africa and the Middle East - known collectively as 'The Arab Spring'. A keen cyclist, he has raised thousands of pounds for the British Heart Foundation. He has also appeared in the UK ITV series 'Bad Girls' where he played the role of a television reporter. He lives in Washington DC.