Biographies

Nancy DeVille

I’m a student at the U.C. Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism. Prior to relocating to the Bay Area, I spent six years as a reporter for The Tennessean in Nashville writing about everything from local politics and education to health and religion. At Berkeley, I’m focusing on radio and long-form feature writing.

When I’m not writing or interviewing sources for my next radio story, I enjoy watching football, grabbing a bit to eat at new Bay Area restaurants, taking in a movie or browsing at a local bookstore.

Upon graduating in May 2015, I hope to land a job in public radio.

 

Imana Gunawan

I am a Seattle-based journalist, dance artist and senior at the University of Washington double majoring in journalism and dance. I currently work as news editor for The Daily of the UW and dance critic for SeattleDances.com. I have contributed written, photographic and/or audio work to The Jordan Times, Seattle Weekly, The Seattle Lesbian, International Examiner, Northwest Asian Weekly and The Seattle Times Blog. I enjoy cats, international politics, impromptu dances and strong coffee/chai latte.

 

Constanza Gallardo 

I was born and raised in Mexico. I’ve always loved media and knew that I wanted to work in it. When I started college, at Florida International University, I decided to major in journalism. Every semester I had internships with different media outlets, such as CNN Mexico, Discovery Latin America, WLRN-Miami Herald News and Radio Ambulante.  These experiences helped me discover my two passions: radio and photography.

As a Spanish-speaking immigrant, I want to use these mediums and tell Latin American stories both inside and outside the U.S.

 

Alyssa Mendez Batista

My name is Alyssa Mendez Batista and I am a senior at the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras studying Journalism and French. My passion for journalism began in high school when I joined the Journalism club and wrote for my school’s newspaper. On my first semester of my freshman year in college, I quickly became involved in many student organizations, including the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and the Puerto Rican Association of Journalism Students, both of which have opened my eyes to great opportunities for careers within the media.

I have had the chance to travel to Europe for studying abroad as well as to many cities in the United States for internships and journalism training programs that have helped shape the skill sets that I have acquired throughout these last 5 years. I am looking forward to the next step of my life by jumpstarting my journalism career when I graduate in December.

 

Gabriela Saldivia

I am senior at Michigan State University, where I am studying journalism, Spanish and documentary film. From working as the news director at my college radio station to interning at mid-Michigan’s NPR member station to working as a producer on a grant-funded documentary project, I have learned a lot in my time at MSU.

My passions are radio storytelling and documentary film but also riding my bicycle and taking photos with disposable cameras. I enjoy stimulating conversations, the excitement of meeting new people and a book that can make me cry.

My curiosity and creativity are definitely the driving forces in my life. After college, I plan to pursue a career working in public media.

 

Ann Kane

Ann  Kane  got  her  start  in  radio  with  KUOW’s youth media training program RadioActive.  She  is  a  recent  graduate  of  the  University  of  Washington,  where  she  studied  International  Studies  and  Music. She lives in Seattle.

 

Reynaldo Leanos Jr.

“My name is Reynaldo Leanos Jr. and I am a senior journalism and international studies student at Texas State University.

I was born and raised in the Rio Grande Valley, but I am currently living in San Marcos, Texas, where I am the news director at KTSW 89.9, my university radio station.

My dream job is to become an international journalist in any type of media, preferably stationed in Latin America, or anywhere else that allows me to travel.

I enjoy traveling, exploring and learning!

Photos: Two-spirit people throughout history

Two-spirit is an umbrella idea referencing indigenous peoples of the Americas who also identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, asexual, intersex, or genderqueer, among others. Especially before European colonization of the United States, two-spirit individuals played prominent roles in various tribes. They would have rites of passages for two-spirit individuals to recognize their spirit, often similar to rites of passages for adolescents.

Different tribes have different roles for these individuals, such as appointing them as the tribe’s healer or those who pray to the creator. But due to colonization of indigenous nations, knowledge of two-spirit identities and traditional rituals have decreased.

Below are some images that have documented two-spirit individuals.

Stories and histories of indigenous two-spirit identities

By Imana Gunawan

Growing up — first on the Rocky Boy Reservation in Box Elder, Mont., and then in Spokane, Wash. — 28-year-old Zachary Pullin always felt he was different.

The dissimilarities were obvious to Pullin: “Who I was and who I maybe had a crush on or feelings for was also different, and in stark contrasts to what everybody else was feeling, and already feeling and knowing at a really early age that different was not gonna be good for me”

Pullin is a member of the Chippewa Cree tribe. He also identifies as queer. In the last few years, Pullin has begun to explore an identity with ancient roots that binds these two parts of himself together: the concept of being a “two-spirit” person.

“Two-spirit is something even more spiritual and exciting that has something more to do with a connection up here and the physical,” he said, referencing a spiritual being. “The two-spirit name is kind of from that relationship.”

Zachar Pullin's portrait
Zachary Pullin, 28, sits at his office in downtown Seattle, Wash. Pullin identifies as Native American and queer. Photo by Imana Gunawan.

Raven Heavy Runner, member of the Blackfoot nation and acting co-chair of the Northwest Two-Spirit Society, said that two-spirit is an umbrella idea referencing indigenous peoples of the Americas who also identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, asexual, intersex, or genderqueer, among others.Especially before European colonization of the United States, Heavy Runner said two-spirit individuals played prominent roles in various tribes. They would have rites of passages for two-spirit individuals to recognize their spirit, often similar to rites of passages for adolescents.

“If they were to be a two-spirit person, they had certain rights within the tribes, but they also had certain responsibilities to the tribe too,” Heavy Runner said.

He added that different tribes have different roles for these individuals, such as appointing them as the tribe’s healer or those who pray to the creator. But due to colonization of indigenous nations, knowledge of two-spirit identities and traditional rituals have decreased.

Instead, in contemporary times, according to Heavy Runner, people who identify as both Native and queer often have “coming out” experiences similar to those often experienced by LGBT individuals and their families.

For Pullin, the understanding of two-spirit identities is a new concept. Growing up, he sensed his difference divided him from his peers.“There came a point in the in the later years maybe fifth or sixth grade where [I was] being called gay, different, freak, weirdo, fag, those things,” he said. “I was different, and now people are recognizing it.”

After graduating from college and moving to Los Angeles, Pullin decided to volunteer for the Peace Corps. He said during his time there, he wanted to learn to be “authentic” to his identities.

“It really invited me to look into myself and understand the pursuit of wholeness,” he said. “Being who I am and being authentic was something that was going to be the best for me.”

He “came out” as a queer individual when he was 22, and said he is now “absolutely, unequivocally,” out — not just as LGBT, but as two-spirit.

“I’ve lived way more of my life [being] closeted for two very important identities that I carry, and so I’m just like ‘gung-ho’ now,” Pullin said. “I will be loud and proud about that.”

Imana Gunawan is a student at the University of Washington studying journalism and dance. She works as news editor at The Daily of the University of Washington, dance critic at SeattleDances.com and freelance journalist and dance artist. She can be reached via Twitter at @imanafg.

Special Project: Finding greens in a food desert

Seattle is filled with a variety of supermarkets, but for some residents access to fresh food isn’t easy. Carrie Ferrence, co-founder of Stockbox Grocers, hopes to change that. Stockbox opened last year in the First Hill neighborhood, in the heart of one of Seattle’s food deserts.

Special Project: Reviving a native language

Abuse and trauma almost destroyed the native language of Lushootseed near Tulalip, Washington. Lushootseed teacher Natasha Gobin has made it her life mission to restore the native language to her community.

The Tulalip community has felt the repercussions of the U.S government’s campaign to eradicate native languages in the late 19th century.

Gobin’s great-grandmother suffered this abuse at a boarding school, which was run by the Bureau of Indian Affairs. Many families near Tulalip share this painful history and are still experiencing the effects.

Special Project: Japanese Brazilian school counselor

Steven Ono immigrated to the United States at age 11. Music helped him through the struggles of learning English and figuring out the school system. Twenty years later he is in his first year as a school counselor at a Bellevue middle school. He hopes to become the kind of counselor he needed as a student.

Urban Death Project: turning human bodies into compost

Everybody will one day die. But the way people say goodbye to the recently deceased body varies to the country and culture. In the U.S. there are two main options: traditional burial and cremation.

A Seattle architect hopes to change that.

Katrina Spade is the founder of the Urban Death Project in Seattle. Listen to her talk about the process and space for the project:

Watch the video with Katrina:

Special Project: An exploration of death and dirt

Grace Seidel, 55, recently decided to have her remains composted once she dies. Seidel has a passion for death and dirt which reinforces the idea of her body going back to the earth.

“It’s easier for me to just know that when my life s over, it will be over,” says Seidel. “So I can make the best of what I have now, be the kindest person I can be, and hope people feel good when they think about me.”

 

Listen to Seidel talk more about dirt and death: