Below are short biographies of the 2016 Food Fellows. We’ll put up links to their published fellowship stories when they go live.
Sam Brasch, Denver, Colorado @samuelbrasch
Sam Brasch reports on politics and science for Colorado Public Radio. Sam’s fellowship story on kosher slaughter demonstrations ran on KCRW’s Good Food in April 2017 “Food for thought: A kosher slaughter.” He’s still working on another, long form story on slaughter in Israel. Since the fellowship, Sam got hired as a full time reporter for Colorado Public Radio. He officially covers the legislature but he’s also managed to carve out another side beat covering meat production. He recently aired a piece on cattle feedlots and water quality.
Audrey Dilling, San Francisco, California @audreydilling
Audrey Dilling is an award-wining independent radio producer based in the Bay Area and former editor and reporter for the news and culture show, Crosscurrents, on KALW public radio in San Francisco. Her work has aired nationally on NPR’s “All Things Considered” and American Public Media’s “Marketplace” and “Marketplace Morning Report”, and internationally on ABC’s “Radiotonic.”
Audrey story on privatized water in California aired on KQED’s The California Report (500,000 weekly listeners, carried on more than 30 public radio stations) in March 2017 “Why This California Town’s Water Costs Three Times the National Average.”
Wes Enzinna, Oakland, California @wesenzinna
Wes Enzinna has reported from Syria, Mexico, Kansas, Bolivia, and Bulgaria, but his most harrowing assignment was a visit to a library of failed writers in Washington state. He writes for the New York Times Magazine, Harper’s, and London Review of Books, and is a senior editor & reporter at Mother Jones. He is at work on a book about an obscure Vermont-based philosopher and the unlikely revolution he inspired in Syria. His related fellowship story about sustainable farming methods in Syria will be published in Mother Jones. In October 2015, Wes wrote a long form piece called “Bizarre and Wonderful” for the London Review of Books about Murray Bookchin, an eco-anarchist in Burlington, Vermont who inspired the PKK’s farming efforts.
Eloise Gibson, Auckland, New Zealand, @eloise_gibson
Eloise Gibson is a freelance science, medical and environment writer from New Zealand. Originally an environmental lawyer, Eloise has covered science, the environment and consumer issues for BBC Future, the New Zealand Herald, The New Zealand Listener, and the website of the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation. Her reporting for Fairfax-owned website Stuff.co.nz on a major shake-up of home insurance after the devastating 2011 Christchurch earthquake earned her New Zealand’s insurance writer of the year award. In 2015 Eloise travelled to New York on a Fulbright scholarship to complete an M.A. in science writing at Columbia University, graduating as recipient of a top prize, the Harris Prize. She’s obsessed with many issues about climate and agriculture, but especially cow belch. Eloise’s fellowship story about cow belch and climate change ran in the November 29, 2017 issue of Businessweek “Cutting Down on Cow Burps to Ease Climate Change.”
Lisa Morehouse, San Francisco, California @cafoodways
Lisa Morehouse is an award-winning public radio reporter focusing on food, agriculture, and the people who make both possible. She produces California Foodways, a county-by-county exploration of stories at the intersection of food, culture, economics, history and labor. For that series, she’s won national Edward R. Murrow and SPJ NorCal awards, and was named 2016’s Karola Saekel Craib Excellence In Food Journalism Fellow by Les Dames D’Escoffier, San Francisco. Her stories air on NPR’s Morning Edition and Latino USA, PRI’s The World, and KQED’s The California Report. An editor at KALW’s Crosscurrents, Morehouse also teaches radio production to high school and college students.
Lisa’s fellowship story “How a Farmworker ‘Company Town’ Is Taking Shape in the Salinas Valley” aired on KQED’s The California Report in November 2016. She is now at work on a longer form radio story on farmworker housing in California.
Alex Park, Oakland, California @acpark1
Alex Park is an investigative reporter with an interest in US engagement with Africa. His work on Africa, agriculture, and development has been published by Mother Jones, The Africa Report, and the European Center for Development Policy Management, and has been cited in reports by GRAIN, Food and Water Watch, and in the pages of The New York Times op-ed section. In 2014, his scoop on the Gates Foundation Trust’s investment in a private prison company inspired a petition with more than 10,000 signatures and a protest outside the Foundation’s headquarters. He’s still working on his fellowship story.
Drew Philp, Detroit, Michigan @drewphilp
Drew Philp’s work has appeared in BuzzFeed, the Guardian, Publishers Weekly, and Spirit Magazine, among other publications. In April 2017 Scribner will publish his first book of nonfiction, A $500 House in Detroit: Rebuilding an Abandoned Home and an American City. In addition to nonfiction Drew has been a writer in the film industry, having written two feature length dramas on contract. He lives in Detroit with his dog, Gratiot, in a house he built with his own hands from the shell of one purchased for $500. He’s going to be publishing his fellowship story in the summer of 2018 in the Guardian.
Wudan Yan, Seattle, Washington @wudanyan
Wudan Yan is an independent journalist based in Seattle, WA. Her work has appeared in The Daily Beast, Discover Magazine, National Public Radio, NewYorker.com, The Scientist, Washington Post, among others. Wudan has reported from the sewers of Boston, to the rural health clinics, mangroves, and palm oil plantations in Southeast Asia. Wudan has a bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry from Brown University, and comes to journalism by way of science.
Irina Zhorov, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania @zhorovir
Irina Zhorov is an award-winning science and environment reporter for WHYY’s The Pulse. She previously produced stories on silver mines in Bolivia, fake border crossings in Mexico, distressed cities in Pennsylvania, energy in Wyoming, and salt in Appalachia.
Irina’s fellowship story is about Russia’s recent efforts to build an enormous new beef industry. She is working on a long form print piece and aired three radio stories after her trip to Russia. Here’s the version that aired on WHYY’s The Pulse in November 2016. Here is the version that aired on NPR’s Planet Money in November 2016. And here is the shorter version that aired on NPR’s Morning Edition in December 2016.
Gerald Marzorati was the editor of the New York Times Magazine from 2003-2010. Prior to joining the Times, he was an editor at the New Yorker and at Harper’s Magazine. He is the author of “Late to the Ball,” a memoir about tennis and aging, published earlier this year by Scribner, and writes regularly about tennis for the newyorker.com. He is the senior strategist at the Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture, devoted to helping Americans eat more healthily and farm more ecologically.
Jack Hitt is the author of the book, Bunch of Amateurs: A Search for the American Character. Most days, he’s a contributing writer to the New York Times Magazine. He occasionally contributes to the public radio program, This American Life. His book, Off the Road: A Modern-Day Walk Down the Pilgrim’s Route into Spain, was made into a motion picture, “The Way,” directed by Emilio Estévez and starring Martin Sheen. His work has won the Peabody, Livingston and Pope Awards. His Harper’s report on American anthropology was selected for a collection of the best science writing of the past 25 years, The Best of the Best of American Science Writing. His work also appears in Harper’s, Rolling Stone andWired. He is currently touring a one-man show, “Making Up the Truth”–a series of his slightly incredible real-life stories woven in with the contemporary brain science that nearly answers the question, “Is any of this true?”
Wendy Dorr is the senior producer of Gimlet Media’s Heavyweight. Prior to that she was a producer on Mystery Show, and before that, worked as independent producer editing stories for Wiretap, Un-Fictional, All Things Considered, Planet Money & Here’s The Thing. For five years Wendy was a producer at This American Life. During her time there she produced many classic stories and episodes including The House at Loon Lake, 24 Hours at the Golden Apple and Somewhere in the Arabian Sea.Wendy got her start in radio logging hundreds of hours of tape for Radio Diaries.
Clara Jeffery became editor-in-chief of Mother Jones in May 2015. Prior to that she was co-editor with Monika Bauerlein. She has spearheaded an era of editorial growth and innovation, marked by the addition of now 13-person Washington bureau, an overhaul of the organization’s digital strategy and a corresponding 15-fold growth in traffic, and the winning of two National Magazine Awards for general excellence. When Jeffery and Bauerlein received a PEN award for editing in 2012, the judges noted: “With its sharp, compelling blend of investigative long-form journalism, eye-catching infographics and unapologetically confident voice, Mother Jones under Jeffery and Bauerlein has been transformed from what was a respected—if under-the-radar—indie publication to an internationally recognized, powerhouse general-interest periodical influencing everything from the gun-control debate to presidential campaigns. In addition to their success on the print side, Jeffery and Bauerlein’s relentless attention to detail, boundless curiosity and embrace of complex subjects are also reflected on the magazine’s increasingly influential website, whose writers and reporters often put more well-known and deep-pocketed news divisions to shame. Before joining the staff of Mother Jones, Jeffery was a senior editor of Harper’s magazine. Fourteen pieces that she personally edited have been finalists for National Magazine Awards, in the categories of essay, profile, reporting, public interest, feature, and fiction. Works she edited have also been selected to appear in various editions of Best American Essays, Best American Travel Writing, Best American Sports Writing, and Best American Science Writing. Clara cut her journalistic teeth at Washington City Paper, where she wrote and edited political, investigative, and narrative features, and was a columnist. Jeffery is a graduate of Carleton College and Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism. She resides in the Mission District of San Francisco.
Michael Pollan is the author of seven books, including Cooked, Food Rules, In Defense of Food, The Omnivore’s Dilemma, and The Botany of Desire, all New York Times bestsellers. A longtime contributor to the New York Times Magazine, he is also the Knight Professor of Journalism at UC Berkeley. In 2010, Time Magazine named Michael one of the 100 most influential people in the world.
Malia Wollan is the Tip columnist for The New York Times Magazine and a contributing writer for the New York Times. She most recently wrote about the quest to make a natural blue M&M for the magazine’s 2016 food issue. Her work appears in Fast Company, The Wall Street Journal, Harper’s, National Public Radio, New York Magazine, the Associated Press, PBS’s Frontline/World and elsewhere. She is a lecturer at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism.