Katon Edwards Dawson (born February 29, 1956) is an American politician from the state of South Carolina, former chairman of the South Carolina Republican Party and was a 2009 candidate for chairman of the Republican National Committee.
Dawson was born in Columbia, South Carolina in then-heavily Democratic South Carolina, his parents helped organize the state's first GOP precincts. Dawson claimed his political interest came from attending a Barry Goldwater speech in 1964, and first volunteered for Richard Nixon's 1968 presidential campaign. He also considers the desegregation of his high-school in the 1960s as a major event that inspired him to enter politics, as Dawson was fiercely anti-desegregation. Dawson commented in an interview,
Dawson graduated from the University of South Carolina. He is president and general manager of a family-owned auto parts distributor, Burns Auto Parts and Supply Inc.