FSC Addresses Rumor

Gretchen Gallen
CHATSWORTH, Calif. -- After three years as executive director of the Free Speech Coalition (FSC) William (Bill) Lyon has stepped down.

With the FSC as the official trade organization for the adult entertainment industry, Lyon has been a close supporter of the adult industry for years. He was active in serving as a free speech representative on various legislative committees and in developing new free speech programs for the FSC.

Lyon joined the FSC in 1999 after an extensive career that included many executive positions in the non-profit sector, a stint as an intelligence agent for the U.S. Government, and years spent as a vice president of marketing and business development for a software company, a marketing director for a foundation for disabled children, and the owner of a 23-store specialty chain. Lyon also trained as an actor with Robert Redford.

Lyon is replaced by Kat Sunlove, who previously served as the FSC's legislative affairs director. Sunlove will re-locate to Los Angeles to fill the position on an interim basis, a representative for the FSC told XBiz.

Lyon's decision to resign from the FSC came as early as the end of last week, and by Monday, Sunlove had been tapped as a replacement.

News of Lyon's departure from the FSC spread quickly through the adult entertainment industry, along with the unsubstantiated rumor that he had been fired.

"One of the problems with someone as prominent as Bill Lyon is that things of this nature are so public and so easily subject to unfounded gossip," Scott Tucker, president of the FSC Board, told XBiz. "People are just creating their own stories and false information at this point and we have no comment."

In the meantime, the FSC has set its sights on Sunlove to take over where Lyon left off and keep fighting the good fight.

"We have a lot of work ahead of us," Sunlove told XBiz from the FSC offices. "There is no question that the industry is under attack from federal and local directions. One of my goals will be to expand our membership and to work with those members who have become disenchanted or unaffiliated."

Prior to working for the FSC, Sunlove served as executive director for Big Brothers/Big Sisters after being promoted from public relations director.

A native of Kilgore, Texas, Sunlove brings years of experience in the adult entertainment industry as a lobbyist, spokesperson, and a political advocate of free speech rights.

Sunlove is the former owner and publisher of San Francisco-based adult entertainment publication Spectator Magazine and for years has been a prolific writer on issues pertaining to the adult sex industry.

Known as Mistress Kat in the days when she worked as a dominatrix in San Francisco, Sunlove has spent years lobbying in Sacramento on behalf of the FSC.

In addition to defending industry labor practices and addressing public concerns regarding the adult entertainment industry, Sunlove is passionate in her defense of adult pornography access and distribution practices.

Sunlove will serve as executive director for a year while the FSC considers its recruitment options. When asked by XBiz if she would consider something more permanent with the FSC, she was reluctant to commit to the idea because of her family, animals, and house in Northern California.

"But when duty calls…That's what it felt like to me," she told XBiz. "I've spent so many years as an advocate of the adult entertainment industry and this is really an exciting opportunity for me to see if I can get the ball rolling so that if a new director steps in there will be new programs in place."

However, if things work out and life in Los Angeles becomes desirable, Sunlove said she might consider throwing her hat into the FSC recruitment ring when the time comes.

"We have some very progressive programs planned for next year and we're really looking forward to making our members work easier and safer."

Among many issues facing the FSC is deciding on whether to endorse the adoption of the .XXX suffix as proposed by Canada-based ICM Registry.

The proposal to submit a second application to ICANN for the .XXX Top-Level Domain has gained widespread industry support from leading companies in the adult world who aspire to a rightful distinction from other areas of online industry.

The FSC board declined to endorse the suffix in mid-October after extensive debate among its board members, many of whom were in favor of endorsing .XXX.

"But being a democratically organized board, there is always a side that wins," Board Member Gregory Dumas told XBiz.

According to Dumas, the board will inevitably vote on the controversial subject again in the near future.

"You can never say never," he said. "We dealt with the issue two years ago and then it was brought up again. Generally anything that has to do with technology should be revisited. As the variables change, there is always the possibility for review."

According to Dumas, the board might revisit the issue in several months from now when the new FSC board is instated at the beginning of the year.