Here’s a portfolio of some of my favorite stories from throughout the years at outlets like The Desert Sun, the Associated Press, and the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.
Economic justice & housing
Surf club proposals
I broke the story of a luxury surf club planned for a rural area in the east Coachella Valley, where many residents have substandard housing and water. Read here
Black residents in the Inland Empire face high unemployment. I covered the development of a new center aiming to create new job opportunities. Read here
Paycheck Protection Program loans went to well-connected and financially savvy business owners, and the program was widely criticized for not benefiting enough small business owners. Read here
Priced out families
The Coachella Valley is one of the few places in southern California considered affordable, but many are still priced out with sky-high home prices around half a million dollars. Read here
The onset of coronavirus
As soon as the coronavirus pandemic started, the desert’s hospitality industry took a major hit that will be felt for years to come. I crunched the numbers in March 2020 to see what it would mean for workers in our region. Read here
I also covered the historic crush of calls that hit the state’s unemployment department as millions of Californians lost their jobs. Read here
In late 2019 Harborside became the first Southern California dispensary to operate a drive-thru — but they had to get around state laws first.
Essential or illegal?
During the pandemic, California dispensaries could be open but they couldn’t access the same business supports as other companies because of federal laws.
Social equity first
The cannabis industry remains overwhelmingly white, despite the harms communities of color from decades of criminalization of the plant. In California, social equity is nascent and necessary.
Hospitality & entrepreneurs
AsiaSF in Palm Springs
A transgender performance venue landed with a splash in Palm Springs, bringing its legendary Bay Area experience to the desert.
Bigger isn’t always better
Before the 2020 spring tourist season, I explained the rising popularity of small, boutique hotels in the desert.
Palm Springs Vintage Market
The Palm Springs Vintage Market is one of my favorite places to hang out, and I loved creating this multi-media package on a few vendors!
I’ve uncovered the truth behind delays of major projects in the valley, like a lawsuit stalling progress on Coachella’s first hotel.