KQED News StaffKQED News Staff

At KQED, we practice journalism in the public service, journalism that is the cornerstone of our very imperfect democracy, journalism that is rooted in the unfulfilled promise of America: that all people are created equal and deserving of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, and equal justice for all.

Adhiti Bandlamudi

KQED Silicon Valley Reporter

Adhiti Bandlamudi reports for KQED's Silicon Valley desk. She focuses on tech coverage in the South Bay and occasionally gets to report on video games, housing and local politics. Before joining KQED in 2020, she reported for WUNC in Durham, North Carolina, WABE in Atlanta, Georgia and Capital Public Radio in Sacramento. In 2017, she was awarded a Kroc Fellowship at NPR where she reported on everything from sprinkles to the Golden State Killer's arrest. When she's not reporting, she's baking new recipes in her kitchen or watching movies with friends and family. She's originally from Georgia and has strong opinions about Great British Bake Off.

Alan Montecillo

KQED Contributor

Alan Montecillo is editor of The Bay, a local news and storytelling podcast from KQED. He's worked as a senior talk show producer for WILL in Champaign-Urbana, Illinois, and was the founding producer and editor of Racist Sandwich, a podcast about food, race, class, and gender. He is a Filipino-American from Hong Kong and a graduate of Reed College in Portland, Oregon.

Alex Emslie

KQED Reporter

Alex Emslie is a criminal justice reporter at KQED. He covers policing policy, crime and the courts. He left Colorado and a career as a carpenter to study journalism at City College of San Francisco and graduated from San Francisco State University's journalism program with a minor in criminal justice studies. He joined KQED in 2013. Alex is proud of his work at KQED uncovering that a single Vallejo police officer shot and killed three suspects over the course of five months. He received the Northern California Society of Professional Journalists Best Scoop award in 2015 for exposing a series of bigoted text messages swapped by San Francisco police officers. He co-produced a Northern California Emmy award-winning documentary film and podcast on the state prison system and a 40-year-old murder case. Alex's reporting on the San Francisco police shooting of Mario Woods won a national Edward R. Murrow award in 2018, and his reporting on police killings of people with mental illness was cited in amicus briefs before the U.S. Supreme Court.

Amanda Font

KQED Contributor

Amanda Font is the Producer/Director of KQED's The California Report Magazine. She grew up in the deserts of Southern California and moved north for the trees. Amanda received a B.A. in Broadcasting with emphasis in audio production from San Francisco State, where she worked in the university's radio station and hosted a sound art show. She believes the difference between sound and noise is desire.

Angela Corral

KQED Contributor

Angela is an Editor at KQED

April Dembosky

KQED Health Correspondent

April Dembosky is the health correspondent for KQED News and a regular contributor to NPR. She specializes in covering altered states of mind, from postpartum depression to methamphetamine-induced psychosis to the insanity defense. Her investigative series on insurance companies sidestepping mental health laws won multiple awards, including first place in beat reporting from the national Association of Health Care Journalists. She is the recipient of numerous other prizes and fellowships, including an Edward R. Murrow award for sound design, a Gracie and SPJ award for long-form storytelling, and a Carter Center Fellowship for Mental Health Journalism. Dembosky reported and produced Soundtrack of Silence, an audio documentary about music and memory that is currently being made into a feature film by Paramount Pictures. Before joining KQED in 2013, Dembosky covered technology and Silicon Valley for The Financial Times of London, and contributed business and arts stories to Marketplace and The New York Times. She got her undergraduate degree in philosophy from Smith College and her master's in journalism from the University of California, Berkeley. She is a classically trained violinist and proud alum of the first symphony orchestra at Burning Man.

Ariana Proehl

Producer, Forum

Ariana Proehl is a producer and fill-in host for Forum. She believes in big ideas, mentoring, globetrotting and Prince.

Ashleyanne Krigbaum

Producer, Rightnowish

Ashleyanne Krigbaum is the producer of Rightnowish She has also made podcasts for Noise Pop, Salon, and award-winning audio tours for SFMOMA, Smithsonian, and the de Young Museum. From 2015 to 2018, she was an announcer and local host of NPR's All Things Considered at KALW.  When she's not making podcasts, she's DJing vinyl at dance parties around the Bay Area.

Audrey Garces

Digital Producer

Audrey is a digital producer at KQED News. Previously, she was a KQED Raul Ramirez Diversity Fund intern where she developed stories that focused on highlighting diverse voices in journalism. Prior to her work at KQED, she worked as a news intern at the San Francisco Examiner. Audrey graduated from San Francisco State University with a B.A. in journalism and a minor in political science.

Beth LaBerge

Photographer, News

Beth LaBerge is a visual journalist for KQED News.

Bianca Taylor

Associate Producer and Host

Bianca Taylor is KQED's Producer of Segmented Audio and Podcasts, and Host of Consider This. Her interactive storytelling project, The Voicebot Chronicles, won a 2020 Webby for Best Writing (Apps, Mobile, and Voice) and was a finalist for the Online Journalism Association's Excellence in Audio Digital Storytelling (Limited Series) category.  Her reporting and production has been featured on NPR, the BBC World Service, and Audible.

Brian Watt

Morning News Anchor

Brian Watt is KQED's morning radio news anchor.  He joined the KQED News team in April of 2016.  Prior to that, he worked as a Reporter for KPCC in Los Angeles and a producer at Marketplace. During eight years at KPCC, Brian covered business and economics, and his work won several awards.  In 2008, he won the Los Angeles Press Club’s first-place award for Business and Financial Reporting, Broadcast.  He’s also received honorable mention and been first runner up for the Press Club’s Radio Journalist of the Year.  He won two Golden Mike awards from the Radio and TV News Association of Southern California. Brian holds degrees in theater from Yale University and the Sorbonne, and has worked as an actor in France, Italy, Brazil, Hungary and . . . Hollywood. He appeared in a few television shows, including The West Wing, Judging Amy and The District. Email: bwatt@KQED.org  Twitter: @RadioBWatt

Carly Severn

KQED Contributor

Carly is KQED's Senior Engagement Editor on the Digital News team, and has reported for the California Report Magazine, Bay Curious and KQED Arts. She's formerly the host of The Cooler podcast.

Caroline Smith

On-Call Producer, Forum

Caroline Smith is an on-call producer for Forum. Smith joined the team in 2019 as an intern and became an on-call producer later that year. Born and raised in the Bay Area, Smith graduated with a B.A. in Rhetoric from UC Berkeley, where she led the arts department and worked as the LGBTQ+ media beat reporter at The Daily Californian. Smith also writes for KQED's MindShift and uses she/they pronouns.

Chloe Veltman

Arts and Culture Reporter

Chloe Veltman covers arts, culture and other topics for KQED. Prior to joining the organization, she launched and led the arts bureau at Colorado Public Radio, served as the Bay Area's culture columnist for the New York Times, and was the founder, host and executive producer of VoiceBox, a national award-winning weekly podcast/radio show and live events series all about the human voice. Chloe is the recipient of numerous prizes, grants and fellowships including a Webby Award for her work on interactive storytelling, both the John S Knight Journalism Fellowship and Humanities Center Fellowship at Stanford University, the Sundance Arts Writing Fellowship and a Library of Congress Research Fellowship. She is the author of the book "On Acting" and a guest lecturer at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. She holds a BA in english literature from King's College, Cambridge, and a Masters in Dramaturgy from the Central School of Speech and Drama/Harvard Institute for Advanced Theater Training. www.chloeveltman.com

Christopher Beale


Christopher J. Beale is an independent radio host, audio producer, and journalist living in San Francisco. After 20 years in commercial radio he fell in love with radio stories and podcasting. In 2019 he "retired" and moved to the Bay Area to pursue a new path. Christopher contributes work to Bay Curious and The Bay, he is also the host and producer of the LGBTQIA story podcast Stereotypes.

Dan Brekke

KQED Contributor

Dan Brekke is a blogger, reporter and editor for KQED News, responsible for online breaking news coverage of topics ranging from California water issues to the Bay Area's transportation challenges. In a newsroom career that began in Chicago in 1972, Dan has worked as a city and foreign/national editor for The San Francisco Examiner, editor at Wired News, deputy editor at Wired magazine, managing editor at TechTV as well as for several Web startups. Since joining KQED in 2007, Dan has reported, edited and produced both radio and online features and breaking news pieces. He has shared in two Society of Professional Journalists Norcal Excellence in Journalism awards — for his 2012 reporting on a KQED Science series on water and power in California, and in 2014, for KQED's comprehensive reporting on the south Napa earthquake. In addition to his 44 years of on-the-job education, Dan is a lifelong student of history and is still pursuing an undergraduate degree. Email Dan at: dbrekke@kqed.org Twitter: twitter.com/danbrekke Facebook: www.facebook.com/danbrekke LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/danbrekke

David Marks

KQED Contributor

David Marks is a digital editor for KQED News. Reach him at dmarks@kqed.org.

Devin Katayama

Host of The Bay

Devin Katayama hosts The Bay podcast from KQED News. Previously, he co-hosted American Suburb and covered the East Bay. Before moving back to the Bay Area in 2015, Devin was the education reporter for WFPL in Louisville and worked as a producer with radio stations in Chicago and Portland, OR. His work has appeared on NPR’s Morning Edition, All Things Considered, The Takeaway and Here and Now. Devin earned his MA in Journalism from Columbia College Chicago, where he was a Follett Fellow and the recipient of the 2011 Studs Terkel Community Media Workshop Scholarship for his story on Chicago's homeless youth. He won WBUR's 2014 Daniel Schorr award and a regional RTNDA Edward R. Murrow Award for his documentary "At Risk" that looked at issues facing some of Louisville's students. Devin has also received numerous local awards from the Associated Press and the Society of Professional Journalists.

Ericka Cruz Guevarra

Producer, The Bay Podcast

Ericka Cruz Guevarra is a producer for The Bay podcast at KQED. She worked previously as a breaking news reporter for Oregon Public Broadcasting where she won a regional SPJ award for her wildfire coverage. Ericka was KQED’s first Raul Ramirez Diversity Fund Intern, and has worked with NPR’s Code Switch team where she helped produce the Code Switch Podcast. She’s an alumna of NPR’s Next Generation Radio project at KJZZ in Phoenix and is a proud graduate of San Francisco State University.

Erika Aguilar

KQED Contributor

Erika Aguilar is the director of podcasts at KQED. She is in charge of KQED's portfolio of original podcasts and teams, and sets strategic plans for production and engagement. Prior to this, Erika helped establish KQED's new housing affordability desk as senior editor. She was also a producer and editor for KQED's local news podcast called The Bay, and wrote stories about housing in the Bay Area as a reporter for KQED News. Erika joined KQED in 2017 after producing independent audio projects and podcasts in Southern California. She spent more than a dozen years reporting stories about law enforcement, breaking news, homelessness, government and the environment for KPCC in Los Angeles and KUT in Austin. She also volunteers as an editor and mentor for various journalism training programs. Erika Aguilar is a proud Tejana from San Antonio. She believes in compromise, optimism and Selena.

Erika Kelly

Senior Editor, Housing

Erika Kelly is the senior editor of KQED’s housing affordability desk, leading a team to produce compelling and wide-ranging reporting on the Bay Area housing crisis. Erika has been responsible for editing and leading KQED’s coverage on some of the Bay Area’s most defining stories and issues. She has been at the center of the newsroom’s coverage of the wildfires that have ravaged Northern California, including the 2017 North Bay fires, the 2018 Camp Fire, and the 2019 Kincaid Fire. She also led KQED’s participation in the 2016 San Francisco Homeless Project, a groundbreaking media collaboration between KQED, The San Francisco Chronicle and dozens of Bay Area media organizations. As KQED’s health editor, she has worked with reporters on stories focusing on maternal mental health, the resurgence of meth in California, the rise and risks of e-cigarette use, and the mental health impacts of climate change. She is a graduate of the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University and a native of the Greater Chicagoland Area.

Erin Baldassari

Staff Writer

Erin Baldassari covers housing for KQED. She's a former print journalist making her first foray into radio. Erin most recently worked as the transportation reporter for the Mercury News and East Bay Times with a focus on how the Bay Area’s housing shortage has changed the way people move around the region. She also served on the East Bay Times’ 2017 Pulitzer Prize-winning team for coverage of the Ghost Ship Fire in Oakland. Prior to that, Erin worked as a breaking news and general assignment reporter for a variety of outlets in the Bay Area and the greater Boston area. A Tufts University alumna, Erin grew up in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains and in Sonoma County. She is a life-long KQED listener, a rider of motorcycles and a lover of history.

Ernesto Aguilar

Director of Radio Programming

Born in East Houston, Ernesto Aguilar’s life was transformed by public media. His career has traversed daily newspapers and alternative weeklies to public radio news and program director roles. He joins KQED after serving as Executive Director of the National Federation of Community Broadcasters, where served stations nationwide for five years. A Robert C. Maynard Institute for Journalism Education Fellow (Advanced Leadership) and Sulzberger Executive Leadership Fellow, Aguilar has a B.A. in journalism, with minors in sociology and Women’s Studies from the University of Houston.

Ethan Toven-Lindsey

Executive Editor, News

Ethan Toven-Lindsey is the executive editor of news for KQED. Before he came to KQED, he worked at WBUR and NPR on the midday newsmagazine Here & Now, in Boston, where he was the show’s senior managing editor. In 2009, Ethan won a Peabody Award for his work as a correspondent for Oregon Public Broadcasting, on a year-long project called Hard Times, documenting how people were responding to the financial crisis. Ethan received his bachelor’s degree from UC Berkeley in 2000, with a major in English literature.

Ezra David Romero

Climate Reporter

Ezra David Romero is a climate reporter for KQED News. He covers the absence and excess of water in the Bay Area — think sea level rise, flooding and drought. For nearly a decade he’s covered how warming temperatures are altering the lives of Californians. He’s reported on farmers worried their pistachio trees aren’t getting enough sleep, families desperate for water, scientists studying dying giant sequoias, and alongside firefighters containing wildfires. His work has appeared on local stations across California and nationally on public radio shows like Morning Edition, Here and Now, All Things Considered and Science Friday. 

Farida Jhabvala Romero

KQED Contributor

Farida Jhabvala Romero is a reporter for KQED and NPR's California Newsroom. She has reported extensively on immigration, and most recently, on wildfire smoke and its impact on communities. She was part of a team of journalists who won a national Edward M. Murrow award in 2020 for their work on “Graying California,” about seniors as the fastest growing age group in California. Farida also won a 2018 Outstanding Emerging Journalist award from the Society of Professional Journalists, Northern California. Before joining KQED, Farida worked as a producer and reporter at Radio Bilingüe, a national public radio network. Farida earned her master’s degree in journalism from Stanford University.

Grace Won

On-call Producer, Forum

Grace Won has been an on-call producer on Forum since 2019.  Prior to joining KQED, Grace was a litigator, and worked on a variety of pro bono prisoner cases, including one that resulted in overturning a client's death penalty sentence on constitutional grounds. She holds a law degree from Georgetown University Law Center, an M.A. in English from University College London and a B.A. in American history and East Asian studies from Harvard University.

Guy Marzorati


Guy Marzorati is a reporter and producer for KQED's California Politics and Government Desk. Guy joined KQED in 2013, and reports on state and local politics. He produces KQED's weekly radio show and podcast Political Breakdown, and recently produced The Political Mind of Jerry Brown, a radio series and podcast on the life and political career of California's former governor. Guy grew up in New York and graduated from Santa Clara University.

Holly Kernan

Chief Content Officer

Holly Kernan is KQED's Chief Content Officer. Kernan's multimedia and multi-platform content portfolio include news, arts, science, television and radio programming, and education. At the heart of Kernan's role is ensuring that KQED provides the highest quality and most trusted original production, programming and coverage to audiences on radio, television, online, and mobile and social platforms. Holly returned to KQED as Executive Editor, News in 2014 after more than a decade as KALW's news and public affairs director. During that time she was the architect of the award-winning Public Interest Reporting Project. She built the KALW newsroom from scratch, including a community training program. Holly has had a long career as an award-winning journalist, television and radio host, an executive producer and an editor. Kernan also launched a journalism-training program at Mills College, where she taught public interest reporting classes. Additionally, she taught advanced watchdog and documentary reporting at the University of California at Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.

Isabeth Mendoza

Engagement Producer

Isabeth "Isa" Mendoza is the Engagement Producer for KQED's slate of podcasts. Isabeth is a bilingual audio journalist from Southeast Los Angeles and her interests are in wellness, social justice, lifestyle, arts and culture. Previously, she worked on Truth Be Told and as a freelancer for NPR’s Weekend Edition, Roxane Gay and Tressie McMillan Cottom’s Hear to Slay, KCRW's Bodies, and Feeling My Flo podcast. Isabeth is an NPR Next Generation Radio alum, an IWMF Gwen Ifill Fellow, and a previous NPR National Desk intern. She holds a Master’s in Public Health from Emory University and a Bachelor of Arts from UC Berkeley.

Jessica Placzek

KQED Contributor

Jessica is the podcast editor at KQED. She’s also been a reporter and audio producer at KQED, KPFA, and KALW. She taught audio to men incarcerated at California State Prison Solano and edited pieces they produced for the Uncuffed podcast through KALW. She co-hosted and produced the third season of Raw Material for SFMOMA. For more information go to jessicaplaczek.com.

Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez

Reporter and Producer

Joe Fitzgerald Rodriguez is a reporter and digital producer for KQED covering housing.  Joe most recently wrote for the San Francisco Examiner as a political columnist covering The City. He was raised in San Francisco and has spent his reporting career in his beloved, foggy, city by the bay. Joe was 12-years-old when he conducted his first interview in journalism, grilling former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown for the Marina Middle School newspaper, The Penguin Press, and he continues to report on the San Francisco Bay Area to this day.

Judy Campbell

Acting Senior Editor, Forum

Judy Campbell is the acting senior editor  for Forum. She hosted and produced the KQED podcast The Leap, about people making dramatic, risky changes. Previously, Judy was a KQED reporter, focusing on criminal justice and prison issues.  

Julia B. Chan

Managing Editor, Digital

Julia B. Chan is the Managing Editor of Digital for KQED News. She leads editorial content strategy, story production and audience engagement across platforms. And she's tasked with shaping the identity of and strategy for KQEDnews.org and many of KQED’s digital properties including newsletters, mobile apps and social media. Her past experience as a multiplatform journalist and project manager at Mother Jones, Reveal, The Center for Investigative Reporting, and the San Francisco Examiner — working on projects ranging from breaking news to long-form investigative work — has prepared Julia for this new role at KQED where she is managing and leading a large team of digitally-savvy journalists.

Julia McEvoy

KQED Contributor

Julia McEvoy is KQED's senior editor, Education and Equity. Julia oversees our education coverage which examines the inequities students face in Bay Area and California schools, and reports on what it will take to educate the next generationJulia works in collaboration with KQED's education reporter on daily news and documentary work. As a senior leader in the newsroom she works closely across KQED News platforms to set the agenda for deep dive reporting projects, as well as daily news features. Julia's editorial work has received a Peabody Award, a Casey Medal for Coverage of Children and Families, several Edward R. Murrow awards, as well as awards from the Public Radio News Directors Inc. and the Society for Professional Journalists.

Julie Chang

KQED Contributor

Julie Chang is a reporter and producer (and occasional anchor) with the radio and digital teams at KQED. Before KQED, she worked at WAMU 88.5 in Washington D.C. and 89.3 KPCC in Los Angeles County. Her work has been featured on NPR’s Morning Edition and All Things Considered, Here & Now, the New York Times, and more. Julie graduated from UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism. She previously taught English at Pasadena City College, Fullerton College and Cal Poly Pomona. Julie earned her M.A. in English from Cal Poly Pomona and her B.A. in English from UCI with a minor in criminology.

Julie Small

KQED Contributor

Julie Small reports on criminal justice and immigration. She was part of a team at KQED awarded a regional 2019 Edward R. Murrow award for continuing coverage of the Trump Administration's family separation policy. The Society for Professional Journalists recognized Julie's 2018 reporting on the San Joaquin County Sheriff's interference in death investigations with an Excellence in Journalism Award for Ongoing Coverage. Julie's reporting with Lisa Pickoff-White on the treatment of mentally ill offenders  in California jails earned a 2017 regional Edward R. Murrow Award for news reporting and an investigative reporting award from the SPJ of Northern California. Before joining KQED, Julie covered government and politics in Sacramento for Southern California Public Radio (SCPR). Her 2010 series on lapses in California’s prison medical care also won a regional Edward R. Murrow Award for investigative reporting and a Golden Mic Award from the RTNDA of Southern California. Julie began her  career in journalism in 2000 as the deputy foreign editor for public radio's Marketplace, while earning her master's degree in journalism from USC’s Annenberg School of Communication.

Kate Wolffe

KQED Reporter + Weekend Host

Kate Wolffe reports on local Bay Area happenings for KQED, and hosts the news on weekend afternoons. She joined KQED in 2018 as an intern on the Forum team, before moving to cover topics ranging from politics to criminal justice to homelessness.  A Bay Area native and UC Berkeley graduate, Kate loves to discover new corners of the region.

Katie Orr

KQED Contributor

Katie Orr is a Sacramento-based reporter for KQED's Politics and Government  Desk, covering the state Capitol and a variety of issues including women in politics, voting and elections and legislation. Prior to joining KQED in 2016, Katie was state government reporter for Capital Public Radio in Sacramento. She's also worked for KPBS in San Diego, where she covered City Hall. Katie received her masters degree in political science from San Diego State University and holds a Bachelors degree in broadcast journalism from Arizona State University. In 2015 Katie won a national Clarion Award for a series of stories she did on women in California politics. She's been honored by the Society for Professional Journalists and, in 2013, was named by The Washington Post as one of the country's top state Capitol reporters.   She's also reported for the award-winning documentary series The View from Here and was part of the team that won  national PRNDI and  Gabriel Awards in 2015. She lives in Sacramento with her husband. Twitter: @1KatieOrr

Katrina Schwartz


Katrina Schwartz is a journalist based in San Francisco. She's worked at KPCC public radio in LA and has reported on air and online for KQED since 2010.  She covered how teaching and learning is changing for MindShift between 2012 and 2020. She is the co-host of the MindShift podcast and now produces KQED's Bay Curious podcast.

Ki Sung

KQED Contributor

Ki Sung is the senior editor of MindShift. Prior to joining MindShift in 2014, she was a digital news trainer at NPR.

Lakshmi Sarah

Digital Producer

Lakshmi Sarah is an educator, author and journalist with a focus on innovative storytelling. She has worked with newspapers, radio and magazines from Ahmedabad, India to Los Angeles, California. She has written and produced for Die Zeit, Global Voices, AJ+, KQED, Fusion Media Group and the New York Times.

Laura Klivans

Reporter and Host

Laura Klivans is a science reporter and the host of KQED's Deep Look. Her work can also be heard on NPR, Here & Now, and PRI. She teaches at UC Berkeley's Graduate School of Journalism. Before getting hooked on all things audio, she worked in education, leading groups of students abroad. One of her favorite jobs was teaching on the Thai-Burmese border, working with immigrants and refugees. Laura won the 2016 North Gate Award for Excellence in Audio Reporting and Production and the Gobind Behari Lal Award for Excellence in Reporting on a Science or Health Story for a radio documentary about adults with imaginary friends. She's done several fellowships, including the USC Center for Health Journalism's California Fellowship, UC Berkeley's Human Rights Fellowship and the Coro Fellowship in Public Affairs. Laura has a master’s in journalism from UC Berkeley and a master’s in education from Harvard. She likes to eat chocolate. For breakfast.

Lina Blanco

Digital Manager of Engagement

Lina is the Senior Engagement Platforms Manager for KQED News and supports the production of KQED's bilingual news hub KQED en Español. Previously, she worked for KQED Arts, supporting engagement efforts on the weekly'Rightnowish' podcast, Webby-winning 'If Cities Could Dance,' and daily Arts & Culture reporting.

Lisa Pickoff-White

Data Journalist, Senior Producer

Lisa Pickoff-White is KQED's data reporter. Lisa specializes in simplifying complex topics and bringing them to life through compelling visuals, including photography and data visualizations. She previously has worked at the Center for Investigative Reporting and other national outlets. Her work has been honored with awards from the Online News Association, Investigative Reporters and Editors, the Society of Professional Journalists and SXSW Interactive.  

Marisa Lagos

KQED Contributor

Marisa Lagos is a correspondent for KQED’s California Politics and Government Desk and co-hosts a weekly show and podcast, Political Breakdown. At KQED, Lagos conducts reporting, analysis and investigations into state, local and national politics for radio, TV and online. Every week, she and cohost Scott Shafer sit down with political insiders on Political Breakdown, where they offer a peek into lives and personalities of those driving politics in California and beyond. Previously, she worked for nine years at the San Francisco Chronicle covering San Francisco City Hall and state politics; and at the San Francisco Examiner and Los Angeles Time,. She has won awards for her work investigating the 2017 wildfires and her ongoing coverage of criminal justice issues in California. She lives in San Francisco with her two sons and husband.

Marisol Medina-Cadena

Producer, Rightnowish Podcast

Marisol Medina-Cadena is a radio reporter and podcast producer. Before working at KQED, she produced for PBS member station, KCET, in Los Angeles. In 2017,  Marisol won an Emmy Award for her work on the televised documentary, City Rising, examining California's affordable housing crisis and the historical roots of gentrification.

Mark Fiore

KQED News Cartoonist

MarkFiore.com | Follow on Twitter | Facebookemail Pulitzer Prize-winner, Mark Fiore, who the Wall Street Journal has called “the undisputed guru of the form,” creates animated political cartoons in San Francisco, where his work has been featured regularly on the San Francisco Chronicle’s web site, SFGate.com.  His work has appeared on Newsweek.com, Slate.com, CBSNews.com, MotherJones.com, DailyKos.com and NPR’s web site.  Fiore’s political animation has appeared on CNN, Frontline, Bill Moyers Journal, Salon.com and cable and broadcast outlets across the globe. Beginning his professional life by drawing traditional political cartoons for newspapers, Fiore’s work appeared in publications ranging from the Washington Post to the Los Angeles Times.  In the late 1990s, he began to experiment with animating political cartoons and, after a short stint at the San Jose Mercury News as their staff cartoonist, Fiore devoted all his energies to animation. Growing up in California, Fiore also spent a good portion of his life in the backwoods of Idaho.  It was this combination that shaped him politically.  Mark majored in political science at Colorado College, where, in a perfect send-off for a cartoonist, he received his diploma in 1991 as commencement speaker Dick Cheney smiled approvingly. Mark Fiore was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for political cartooning in 2010, a Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award in 2004 and has twice received an Online Journalism Award for commentary from the Online News Association (2002, 2008).  Fiore has received two awards for his work in new media from the National Cartoonists Society (2001, 2002), and in 2006 received The James Madison Freedom of Information Award from The Society of Professional Journalists.

Matthew Green

KQED Contributor

Matthew Green is a digital media producer for KQED News. He previously produced The Lowdown, KQED’s multimedia news education blog. Matthew's written for numerous Bay Area publications, including the Oakland Tribune and San Francisco Chronicle. He also taught journalism classes at Fremont High School in East Oakland. Email: mgreen@kqed.org; Twitter: @MGreenKQED

Michelle Wiley

Senior Editor, Weekends

Michelle Wiley is the senior editor of weekends.

Mina Kim

Host, Forum

Mina Kim is host of the 10 a.m. statewide hour of Forum; a live daily talk show for curious Californians on issues that matter to the state and nation, with a particular emphasis on race and equity. Before joining the Forum team, Mina was KQED’s evening news anchor, and health reporter for The California Report. Her award-winning work has included natural disasters in Napa and gun violence in Oakland. Mina grew up in St. John’s, Newfoundland.

Miranda Leitsinger

KQED Contributor

Miranda Leitsinger has worked in journalism as a reporter and editor since 2000, including seven years at The Associated Press in locales such as Cambodia and Puerto Rico, four years at NBC News Digital in New York and 2.5 years at CNN.com International in Hong Kong. Major stories she has covered included sexual abuse in the yoga community, the rise of women in local politics post-2016 election, the struggle over LGBTQ inclusion in the Boy Scouts, aftermath of the 2004 and 2011 tsunamis, the Aurora movie theater attack, the Newtown school shooting, Superstorm Sandy and the Boston Marathon bombing.

Molly Solomon

KQED Housing Reporter

Molly Solomon reports on housing at KQED. She focuses on homelessness, evictions and the affordability crisis. Before that, she was the Southwest Washington Bureau Chief for Oregon Public Broadcasting and a general assignment reporter at Hawaii Public Radio. Her stories have aired on NPR’s Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Here & Now, Science Friday and Marketplace. Molly has won three national Edward R. Murrow awards and her work has been honored by the Associated Press, Society of Professional Journalists, and the Asian American Journalists Association. Molly graduated from UC Santa Cruz. As a Bay Area native, she is hella excited to return home.

Monica Lam

KQED Contributor

Monica is senior editor of digital content. She likes to report and edit as well as produce video and take photos. Before joining KQED, Monica worked at the Center for Investigative Reporting, where she examined conditions inside maximum security prisons and abuse in state-run institutions for the developmentally disabled. Prior to that, she produced and directed Journey of the Bonesetter's Daughter, a documentary that follows novelist Amy Tan as she creates an opera based on her family history. Monica's work has been honored with a duPont Award, four Emmys, regional and national Murrow Awards, and has been recognized by Investigative Reporters and Editors, the Society of Professional Journalists, Religion Newswriters Association and the San Francisco Peninsula Press Club. Monica studied urban studies at Stanford University and earned a master's in journalism at University of California at Berkeley. Follow her on twitter: @monicazlam

Natalia V Navarro

Nataila V. Navarro

Natalia V Navarro is a News Anchor at KQED News. She came to KQED from Colorado Public Radio, where she was a reporter and host and worked on CPR's COVID-19 coverage team. Natalia is originally from Tucson, Arizona and before joining CPR she wrote stories for several news organizations including the Arizona Daily Star and Arizona Public Media. Natalia earned her bachelor's degree in journalism and economics, and her master's degree in journalism from the University of Arizona.

Nina Thorsen

Producer, Radio

Nina Thorsen is a KQED radio producer, and frequently reports on sports and culture.   She co-created and produced KQED's Pacific Time,  a weekly radio program on Asian and Asian American issues that aired from 2000 to 2007. Before coming to KQED, Thorsen was the deputy foreign editor for Marketplace, and in her home state of Minnesota, worked for A Prairie Home Companion and for Public Radio International.  

Olivia Allen-Price

KQED Contributor

Olivia Allen-Price is producer and host of the Bay Curious series. Prior to joining KQED in 2013, Olivia worked at The Baltimore Sun and The Virginian-Pilot in Norfolk, Va. She holds degrees in journalism and political science from Elon University. Her work has earned awards from the Society of Professional Journalists, the Hearst Foundation and Hearken. She loves to talk about running and curly hair. Follow: @oallenprice Email: oallenprice@kqed.org

Priya David Clemens

KQED Newsroom Host

Priya David Clemens is the host of KQED Newsroom, the long-running television weekly news series. The veteran journalist and Bay Area resident has more than 15 years of television news experience working for a variety of national and local outlets, including CBS News, NBC News and KTVU. Clemens’ extensive broadcast journalism background had her crisscrossing the country covering some of the most important stories of the early part of the millennium. As a national correspondent for CBS News (2008-2012), she reported for the CBS Evening News and The Early Show, anchored the CBS Weekend Early Show news desk and filled in as host of the Saturday and Sunday CBS Evening News. At CBS, she covered pivotal moments such as the financial meltdown of 2008, and interviewed such notable figures as Donald Trump, Warren Buffett and Kobe Bryant. As a general assignment reporter covering breaking news for Bay Area Fox affiliate KTVU (2005-2008), she covered a multitude of stories, including a major San Francisco Bay oil spill and the murder trial of journalist Chauncey Bailey. At NBC News (2002-2004), Clemens served as a producer and news associate for NBC Weekend Nightly NewsDatelineNightly News with Tom Brokaw and News with Brian Williams. She also spent extensive time as an embedded campaign reporter for NBC/MSNBC covering Vice President Dick Cheney’s bid for re-election and Dick Gephardt’s campaign for the Democratic nomination for President. Clemens has also been a journalist at KOIN in Portland, Oregon; WVTM in Birmingham, Alabama; KKFX in Santa Barbara, California; and the Orange County News Channel. More recently, Clemens served as Director of Public Affairs for the Golden Gate Bridge Highway and Transportation District, where she managed communications and media for the Golden Gate Bridge, Golden Gate Ferry and Golden Gate Transit bus system. Clemens was born in Chennai, India, and grew up in Virginia, California, Brussels and London. She earned her bachelor’s degree in anthropology from Westmont College and her master’s degree in broadcast journalism from the University of Southern California, where she graduated with honors. KQED Newsroom features engaging roundtable discussions, in–depth reporting, analysis and interviews with newsmakers and Bay Area innovators. The program‘s roots go back to 1968, when it was simply titled Newsroom. Launched in response to a local newspaper strike, the show was the first regional television public media news program and a forerunner of the MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour (now called PBS NewsHour).

Queena Sook Kim

Senior Editor

Queena Sook Kim is the Senior Editor of Weekend desk at KQED. Before taking on this post, she was the Senior Editor of the Silicon Valley Desk and was the host of The California Report. The daily morning show airs on KQED in San Francisco, one of the nation’s largest NPR affiliates, and on 30 stations across the state. In that role, she produces and reports on news, politics and life in the Golden State. Queena likes to take sideways look at the larger trends changing the state. One of her favorite stories asked why Latino journalists “over’pronounce” their Spanish surnames as a way of looking at how immigration is creating a culture shift in California. Before joining The California Report, Queena was a Senior Reporter covering technology for Marketplace, the daily business show that airs on public radio. Queena covered daily tech business stories and reported on larger technology trends. She did a series of stories looking at role of social engineering in hacking and on a start-up in Silicon Valley that’s trying to use technology, instead of animals, to make meat that bleeds. Queena started her career as a business journalist at the Wall Street Journal, where she spent four years covering the paper, home building and toy industries. She wrote A1 stories about the unusually aggressive tactics KB Home took against its home buyers. and the resurgence of “Cracker” architecture in Florida. She also wrote section front stories on marketing trends and As a journalist, Queena has spent much of her career helping start-up editorial products. She was on the founding editorial team of The Bay Citizen, an experimental, online news site in San Francisco that was funded by the late hillbilly billionaire Warren Hellman. In 2009, Queena received a grant from the Corporation of Public Broadcasting to start-up a podcast called CyberFrequencies, which reported on the culture of technology. She also helped start-up two radio shows - Off-Ramp and Pacific Drift - for KPCC, the NPR-affiliate in Los Angeles. Off-Ramp was awarded 1st Place for news and Public Affairs programming by the PRINDI and the L.A. Press club. Queena’s stories have appeared on NPR’s Day to Day, Hearing Voices, WNYC’s Studio 360, WBUR’s Here and Now, BBC’s Global Perspectives and New York Times’ multimedia page. In 1994, Queena won a Fulbright Grant to teach and study in Seoul, South Korea. She was also selected to be a Teach For America Corps Member in 1991 and taught elementary school in the Inglewood Unified School District in Southern California. Queena is a frequent public speaker and has given talks at UC Berkeley, Stanford University, San Francisco State University, PRINDI conference and the Craigslist Foundation Boot Camp. Queena went to UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism and graduated cum laude from New York University with a B.A. in Politics. She grew up in Southern California and lives in Berkeley, Ca in a big fixer on which she spends most weekends, well, fixing.

Rachael Myrow

Senior Editor of KQED's Silicon Valley News Desk

Rachael Myrow is Senior Editor of KQED's Silicon Valley News Desk. You can hear her work on NPR, WBUR's Here & Now and the BBC. She also periodically guest hosts for KQED's Forum. Over the years, she's talked with Kamau Bell, Lyrics Born, David Byrne, Kamala Harris, Tony Kushner, Armistead Maupin, Van Dyke Parks, Arnold Schwarzenegger, and Tommie Smith, among others. Before all this, she hosted The California Report for 7+ years, reporting on topics like assisted living facilities, the robot takeover of Amazon, and chocolate persimmons. Awards? Sure: Peabody, Edward R. Murrow, Regional Edward R. Murrow, RTNDA, Northern California RTNDA, SPJ Northern California Chapter, LA Press Club, Golden Mic. Prior to joining KQED, Rachael worked in Los Angeles at KPCC and Marketplace. She holds degrees in English and journalism from UC Berkeley (where she got her start at public radio on the show "Film Close Ups" at KALX-FM). Outside of the studio, you'll find Rachael circling the Stanford Dish, and whipping up Instagram-ready meals in her kitchen.

Raquel Maria Dillon

Reporter and Host

Raquel Maria Dillon is a reporter and host for KQED News. Previously, she produced the daily statewide California Report, edited newscasts, and covered health and education stories. Before returning to the Bay Area in 2016, she worked in Los Angeles as a wire reporter and one-woman-band video journalist for the Associated Press, where she shot, edited and reported breaking news and features across the West. Her work has appeared online and in print around the globe, and also on NPR’s Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Here and Now, Marketplace, On The Media, and Studio 360. She previously edited and mentored up-and-coming reporters at KALW, produced social videos for Timeline.com, and was a local TV news videographer for KTVU and digital producer for KNTV. She got her start as a Radio News Trainee at KQED, produced a weekly public affairs roundtable show for OPB, and covered health and politics at New Hampshire Public Radio. She has a BA in political science from Barnard College and a MA in video journalism from UC Berkeley, where she was awarded the Faith Fancher Scholarship and a Student Emmy. She has received numerous local awards from the Associated Press and the Society of Professional Journalists.

Sam Harnett

KQED Contributor

Sam Harnett is a reporter who covers tech and work at KQED. For the last five years he has been reporting on how technology and capitalism are changing the way we think about ourselves and what it means to work. He is the co-creator of The World According to Sound, a 90-second podcast that features different sounds and the stories behind them. Before coming to KQED, Sam worked as an independent reporter who contributed regularly to The California Report, Marketplace, The World and NPR.

Sandhya Dirks

KQED Contributor

Sandhya Dirks is the race and equity reporter at KQED. She approaches race and equity not as a beat, but as a fundamental lens for all investigative and explanatory reporting. Sandhya covers policing, housing, social justice movements, and the shifting demographics of cities and suburbs. She's the creator and co-host of the podcast American Suburb, about the transformation of suburbia into the most diverse space in American life. She was the editor for Truth Be Told, an advice show for and by people of color.  She's currently reporting and producing an investigative documentary podcast about police accountability. Her stories about race, space, and belonging were part of KQED's So Well Spoken project, which won RNDTA's Kaleidoscope award, honoring outstanding achievements in the coverage of diversity. Prior to joining KQED in 2015, Sandhya covered the 2012 presidential election from the swing state of Iowa for Iowa Public Radio. At KPBS in San Diego, she broke the story of a sexual harassment scandal that led to the mayor's resignation. She got her start in radio working on documentaries about Oakland that investigated the high drop-out rate in public schools and mistrust between the police and the community. Sandhya lives in Oakland and believes all stories are stories about power.

Sara Hossaini

KQED Reporter

Sara Hossaini came to general assignment reporting at KQED in 2013 after two winters reporting at Wyoming Public Radio. She holds a bachelor's degree in broadcast journalism from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Her radio romance began after a bitter breakup with documentary film (Ok, maybe it's still complicated). Her first simultaneous jobs in San Francisco were as Associate Producer on a PBS film series through the Center for Asian American Media and as a butler. She likes to trot, plot and make things with her hands.

Sasha Khokha

Host, The California Report Magazine

Sasha Khokha is the host of The California Report's  weekly magazine program, which takes listeners on sound-rich excursions to meet the people that make the Golden State unique -- through audio documentaries and long-form  stories. As The California Report's Central Valley Bureau Chief based in Fresno for nearly a dozen years, Sasha brought the lives and concerns of rural Californians to listeners around the state. Her reporting helped expose the hidden price immigrant women janitors and farmworkers may pay to keep their jobs: sexual assault at work. It inspired two new California laws to protect them from sexual harassment.  She was a key member of the reporting team for the Frontline film Rape on the Night Shift, which was nominated for two national Emmys. Sasha has also won a national Edward R. Murrow and a national PRNDI award for investigative reporting, as well as multiple prizes from the Society for Professional Journalists. Sasha is a proud alum of the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism and Brown University and a member of the South Asian Journalists Association.

Scott Shafer

KQED Contributor

Scott Shafer came to KQED in 1998 to host the statewide California  Report. Prior to that he had extended stints in politics and government. Using that inside experience, he is now Senior Editor for KQED's Politics and Government Desk where he provides reporting, hosting and analysis while also overseeing the politics desk. Scott co-hosts the weekly show and podcast Political Breakdown and he collaborated on The Political Mind of Jerry Brown, an eight-part series about the life and extraordinary political career of the former governor. For fun, he plays water polo with the San Francisco Tsunami.

Sheraz Sadiq

KQED Contributor

Sheraz Sadiq is an Emmy Award-winning producer at KQED. He covers current affairs topics and previously produced and reported on science and technology issues, from self-driving cars to synthetic biology.

Sukey Lewis

KQED Contributor

Sukey Lewis is a criminal justice reporter and host of On Our Watch, a new podcast from NPR and KQED about the shadow world of police discipline. In 2018, she co-founded the California Reporting Project, a coalition of newsrooms across the state focused on obtaining previously sealed internal affairs records from law enforcement. In addition to her reporting on police accountability, Sukey has investigated the bail bonds industry, California's wildfires and the high cost of prison phone calls. Sukey earned a master's degree in journalism from the University of California at Berkeley. Send news tips to slewis@kqed.org.

Susan Britton

Producer, Forum

Susan Britton is the interim lead producer for Forum's 10 AM hour. She's been an on-call producer for KQED since 2012 and a longtime contributor to KALW. She's a graduate of Columbia Law School and Yale College.

Suzie Racho

KQED Contributor

Suzie Racho is the producer/director of The California Report Magazine. She also works with several other KQED productions,  including Bay Curious, The Do List and KQED News. Suzie came to KQED in 1996 after receiving a BA in journalism from San Francisco State University and spending several years working in the music industry.  As part of The California Report team, her work  has been recognized by the Society for Professional Journalists, National Federation of Community Broadcasters and  Public Radio News Directors Incorporated,  among others.  She spends her free time baking, listening to records and rooting for the San Francisco Giants.

Tara Siler

KQED Contributor

Tara reports and sometimes anchors for KQED news. She covers a range of issues from community-police relations to local politics. Tara started out in community radio in the Bay Area, where she was raised. She eventually moved to Washington DC where she covered Congress for eight years for Pacifica and Monitor Radio. Her stories have also been heard on NPR's All Things Considered, Morning Edition and The World. Tara lives with her husband in Oakland-- where they raised their two sons. She enjoys spending time with her large family, gardening and hiking in the Oakland hills with her dog.

Ted Goldberg

KQED Senior Editor

Ted Goldberg is senior editor of KQED's Newscasts. His beat areas include the Bay Area's oil refineries, California's workplace safety issues and the state's firefighting resources. Prior to joining KQED in 2014, Ted worked at CBS News and WCBS AM in New York and Bay City News and KCBS Radio in San Francisco. He graduated from Oberlin College in Ohio in 1998.

Tina Lykke Laurberg

KQED Contributor

Tina joined Forum as an intern in 2004, worked as an on-call producer from 2007.  She became a full-time Forum producer in 2015.  It's possible -- likely even-- that she has the record for producing the most shows of any producer. She got her bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Wheaton College (MA), a masters in English literature from Lund University in Sweden, and a degree in business from Copenhagen Business School.

Tyche Hendricks

KQED Contributor

Tyche Hendricks is editor for The California Report, KQED’s daily, statewide radio news program. She leads KQED's immigration coverage, and recently reported on the plight of migrant teens locked in indefinite detention -- a collaboration with the Center for Investigative Reporting. She also coordinates KQED's election coverage. Before joining KQED in 2010, Tyche worked as a newspaper reporter at the San Francisco Chronicle, as well as the Hearst-owned San Francisco Examiner, the San Jose Mercury-News and the Seattle Times. Her work has been recognized with awards from the Radio and Television News Directors Association, including a 2012 Edward R. Murrow award for KQED's election coverage;  the Society for Professional Journalists; the Education Writers Association; the Best of the West and the National Federation of Community Broadcasters. Tyche has taught at the University of California at Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism and, from 2010 to 2015, directed a national immigration symposium for professional journalists there She is the author of The Wind Doesn't Need a Passport: Stories from the U.S.-Mexico Borderlands (U.C. Press, 2010). Tyche holds a BA from Wesleyan University, and master's degrees in Latin American Studies and  Journalism from U.C. Berkeley. She speaks fluent Spanish and passable French.

Vanessa Rancaño

Reporter, Education

Vanessa Rancaño covers education for KQED. She's one of the few people in her family who's not a teacher, but she didn't stray too far from the profession. Her work has appeared on NPR's Morning Edition, All Things Considered, Marketplace, Here & Now, Latino USA and Snap Judgment. She's received a national award from the Association of Alternative Newsmedia and shared in national and regional RTDNA Edward R. Murrow Awards. Vanessa grew up in California's Central Valley.  She's a former NPR Kroc Fellow, and a graduate of the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.

Victoria Mauleón

KQED Contributor

Victoria Mauleón is The California Report's senior editor, overseeing the production and editorial direction of the weekly, statewide news magazine program. She is the show's primary content editor, working with KQED reporters, member station reporters and freelancers. Victoria has  taught advanced radio and podcasting at the University of California at Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism. Before her work in radio, Victoria worked as a television producer, and her work aired on PBS, MSNBC, HBO, VH1, and AMC. Her work has earned her a Northern California Emmy Award, a John Swett Award, an Excellence in Journalism Award from the Society of Professional Journalists, two San Francisco Peninsula Press Club awards and a Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism.

Vinnee Tong

KQED Contributor

Vinnee Tong is the managing editor of news at KQED. She oversees editorial standards and works to highlight underrepresented voices and perspectives. She was founding editor of The Bay, a storytelling news podcast from KQED. Previously, she was a producer on the Bay Curious podcast and the lead producer of Truth Be Told, an award-winning KQED series on race and identity distributed nationally by Public Radio International. Before KQED, Vinnee was a print reporter at the Associated Press and newspapers. She covered local news from city hall and planning commission hearings as well as business news from New York, like the financial meltdown of 2008. She has won awards for her reporting including an RTNDA Edward R. Murrow Award, as well as awards from the New York Press Club and the Society of American Business Editors and Writers. She is a graduate of the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and the University of California at Berkeley, where she was editor-in-chief of The Daily Californian.


Producer, Forum

Blanca Torres brings sharp news judgement and keen sense of lively conversation to her work as producer for Forum. She loves producing shows that leave listeners feeling like they heard distinctive voices, learned something new and gained a fresh perspective. She joined KQED in January of 2020 after 16 years of working as a newspaper reporter most recently at the San Francisco Business Times, where she wrote about real estate and economic development. Before that, she covered a variety of beats including crime, education, retail, workplace, the economy, consumer issues, and small business for the Contra Costa Times, Baltimore Sun and The Seattle Times. In addition to reporting, she worked as an editorial writer and columnist for the Seattle Times. From 2017 to 2020, Blanca won a total of ten awards from the National Association of Real Estate Editors and won first place for land use reporting from the California News Publishers Association two years in a row. She is also a member and former board member for the National Association of Hispanic Journalists. A native of the Pacific Northwest, Blanca earned her bachelor's degree from Vanderbilt University in Nashville and a master's in fine arts in creative writing at Mills College. She lives in the East Bay with her family.