Hello, and thanks for visiting my site.
I’m a journalist and audio producer. I write and make radio. My work has aired and published in numerous outlets, including NPR, PRI, KQED, Here & Now, WIRED, National Geographic, The News York Times, Harper’s, The Atlantic, Foreign Policy, Foreign Affairs, and the podcasts 70 Million, WoVen and The World in Words. I also appear on public radio programs like PRI’s The World, Marketplace and The Takeaway to talk about my work and serve as an on-air correspondent.
My motivations lie in producing immersive, thought-provoking stories that illuminate the way the world works; challenge, validate, and expand peoples’ perspectives; inform policy; hold the powerful accountable; and empower communities. I am interested in collaborating on dynamic projects focused on achieving these results and more. I have been reporting and producing audio since 2007 and would like to move into a staff position, ideally to continue to do journalism, narrative non-fiction, and storytelling that bites.
These days, I most often report on power structures, religion (particularly religious-nationalism), diaspora and identity. And I am attracted to avenues for stories that are offbeat, challenge assumptions, and link local and global consequences. From 2009 to 2011, I was based in Shizuoka, Japan, where I taught English on the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program, and founded, produced and hosted Shizuoka Speaks, a podcast on racism, immigration and education in Japan. From 2013 to 2015, I was based in Lucknow, India, where I studied Urdu and reported on the world’s largest election, politics and social issues — primarily from Uttar Pradesh, an Indian state the size of Brazil. Upon transitioning from reporting in India, in 2016, I was selected as an African Great Lakes reporting fellow with the International Women’s Media Foundation, and reported on politics, press freedom and gender in Uganda. In 2017, I was named a “rising star” and a senior fellow with the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism.
Since then, I’ve continued to follow a longterm project in India and reported across the United States in places like Mississippi, New Orleans, New Jersey, and especially in California. I’ve developed an expertise covering the South Asian diaspora, which has brought me to work on special projects like this feature for National Geographic (including this video I reported and narrated).
My stories are used as educational materials in journalism, criminal justice and religious studies courses, and cited in books and research papers that discuss digital media in an international context, politics and economic growth, gendered violence and sexualized minorities. They’ve also been shortlisted for awards with the South Asian Journalists Association and Religion News Association.
Some of my memorable and meaningful pieces are on language politics, accents and voice recognition technology, a woman’s gun, SantaCon, Hindu nationalism, migrant teachers, fights about the portrayal of ancient Indian history in California textbooks, the immolation of a “Facebook journalist,” queer communities, sports betting, a sand mafia, “Beyoncé and the Bible,” vote polarization, bodybuilding, bail reform, politicking with Uganda’s top female politician, a day in the life of a lookalike of India’s prime minister, an Asian beauty pageant, and my friend Kim Wall.
My reporting and professional development has been generously supported by the Suruga International Institute in Japan, the Newswomen’s Club of New York, the International Women’s Media Foundation, the South Asian Journalists Association, the Asian American Journalists Association, the Religion News Association, the Association of Independents in Radio, the Fund for Investigative Journalism, and the Schuster Institute for Investigative Journalism.
I also write, host and produce Loitering: The Occasional, But Lovable, Traveling Minipod, named after the “Why Loiter” movement fighting for women’s right to safe space (Every episode hovers on the influence of space in our lives. Loitering in the Library discussed homelessness in the library, for example). Loitering’s current life form is as a newsletter podcast, which you can listen, read and subscribe to here.
I’m currently based in Oakland, California, reporting and loitering in the places I grew up and beyond.