• Moira Shourie

    Executive Director

    Moira was an executive at MTV Networks International for 12 years, working to launch the network throughout Europe, Asia, Australia, and Africa, as well as producing series and programming music for MTV India. Previously, she was part of the startup team that launched Outlook, now one of India’s most widely read news magazines. She has served on non-profit boards for over a decade and is the past President of Zócalo’s Board of Trustees.



    Sarah was most recently associate editorial director at Center Theatre Group, one of the country's largest nonprofit theatres. Until 2015 she was the editor and associate publisher of Zócalo Public Square, and since then she has served as book prize editor. She began her career at Alfred A. Knopf and W. W. Norton working on a wide variety of fiction and nonfiction titles, from award-winning novels and short story collections to bestselling memoirs and cookbooks.



    Joe was a reporter for the Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal, and the Baltimore Sun. He is co-author of California Crackup: How Reform Broke the Golden State and How We Can Fix It and author of The People’s Machine: Arnold Schwarzenegger and the Rise of Blockbuster Democracy. He is co-president of the Global Forum on Modern Direct Democracy.



    Sara graduated with a degree in English from the College of William & Mary and received an MFA in film directing at the California Institute of the Arts, where she was a postgraduate teaching fellow. Her films have been screened in the U.S. and abroad.

  • Jackie Mansky

    Associate Editor

    Jackie is a writer and editor based in L.A. Most recently, she was the assistant arts and culture editor for Smithsonian Magazine's website. She holds an MA from Columbia Journalism School.

  • Naledi Makhene

    Events Coordinator

    Naledi graduated from Michigan State University with a B.A. in Social Relations and Policy. She previously coordinated events for a non-profit travel organization. She also has an interest and background in diversity and inclusion.

  • Kelsey Schoenberg

    Editorial Assistant

    Kelsey graduated from the University of California, San Diego with degrees in Speculative Design and Philosophy, and worked in marketing and design for the performing arts program, ArtPower. She was previously an exhibition designer at Wonderspaces, a San Diego arts startup.

  • Arianna Lee

    Programming & Operations Assistant

    Arianna graduated from UCLA with a BA in Art History. She received an Arts for LA ACTIVATE Fellowship in Cultural Policy in 2018 as well as a Gilman International Scholarship to study abroad in London.

  • Suzanne Wilson

    Media Relations

    Suzanne is a senior media relations representative for Zócalo’s Knowledge Enterprise partner, Arizona State University. She has been a journalist and executive news producer and also directed communications and strategy for a successful statewide campaign in support of working families in Arizona.

  • Liz MacDonald

    Consulting Producer, Special Projects

    Liz founded the Live Events Department at the Los Angeles-based NPR station KCRW, where she was also a creative director and executive producer. As Director of New Initiatives, she also expanded the station’s live in-person programming in Santa Barbara and San Francisco. She splits her time between Los Angeles, San Francisco and Hawaii.

  • Eryn Brown


    Eryn is a Los Angeles-based writer who has reported on science, health, business, and a variety of other subjects. A former staff member at the Los Angeles Times and at Fortune Magazine, she has also written stories for The New York Times, Wired, Nature, and other outlets. She graduated from Harvard College in 1993.

  • Minal Hajratwala


    Minal is the author of three books of nonfiction and poetry. She ran the Sunday Perspective section at the San Jose Mercury News, was a journalism fellow at Columbia, and was a Fulbright Senior Research Scholar in Mumbai.

  • Thea Petchler


    Thea is trained as an artist and a cultural historian. She has taught writing at Art Center College of Design for fifteen years and holds a B.A. from Yale and an M.F.A. from the University of Iowa.

  • Connie Voisine


    Connie is the author of 5 books of poems, most recently The Bower. A finalist for the LA Times Book Award, her poems have been published in The New Yorker, Poetry Magazine and elsewhere. A native of northern Maine, she lives and works in southern New Mexico and Chicago.

  • Stefan G. Bucher

    Illustration Editor

    Stefan is a Los Angeles-based brand designer, illustrator, and writer. He is the author of seven books, including the best-selling 344 Questions—The Creative Person’s Do-It-Yourself Guide to Insight, Survival & Artistic Fulfillment. He was named a Young Gun by the Art Directors Club of New York and is a recipient of D&AD’s Yellow Pencil for book design.

  • Be Boggs

    Contributing Illustrator

    Be is a Los Angeles-based artist who works in animation, digital illustration, painting, woodcarving, and photography. She has had solo exhibitions at Sheila Olsen Gallery in Laguna Beach and ArtShareLA.


    Contributing Editor

    Lisa has written for publications including The Atlantic, Scientific American, and Wired and has written two books—Oil On the Brain: Petroleum's Long, Strange Trip to Your Tank (2007) and Underbug: An Obsessive Tale of Termites and Technology (2018). An editor at Zócalo from 2016–2020, she is now at Issues in Science and Technology.

  • Asha Rangappa

    Contributing Editor

    Asha Rangappa is a Senior Lecturer at Yale University’s Jackson Institute for Global Affairs and a legal and national security analyst for CNN. She is a former Associate Dean at Yale Law School and previously served as a Special Agent in the New York Division of the FBI, specializing in counterintelligence investigations.

  • James C. Cobb

    Contributing Editor

    James C. Cobb is a Distinguished Professor in History of the American South at the University of Georgia. He has published 13 books focusing on the interaction of economy, politics, and culture in the American South. A former president of the Southern Historical Association, he was recently inducted into the Georgia Writers Hall of Fame.

  • Jennifer Mercieca

    Contributing Editor

    Jennifer Mercieca, a historian of American political rhetoric, is an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication at Texas A&M University. She is the author of Founding Fictions, The Rhetoric of Heroic Expectations: Establishing the Obama Presidency, and a forthcoming book on Donald Trump and demagoguery.

  • José González Vargas

    Contributing Editor

    José González Vargas is a Venezuelan journalist and writer. Formerly a professor at Universidad Bicentenaria de Aragua, he has contributed to Americas QuarterlyIntoCaracas Chronicles, and ViceVersa Magazine. His literary work, written in Spanish and English, has been published by Strange HorizonsLetralia, and Fireside Quarterly. In 2017 he won the Solsticios Prize, Venezuela's top science fiction and fantasy award, for his short story "E Pluribus Unum.”