Meet the reporters and apprentices behind our August 2020 project at USC Annenberg.
- Meet Denae Ayala
Denae Ayala is a multimedia reporter from Los Angeles. Her drive to share other people’s stories with the world is one of her favorite things about working in journalism. She graduated from Cal State L.A. in 2020 with a degree in Television, Film, and Media Studies with a focus on journalism. As a staff reporter at her alma mater’s newspaper, The University Times, Denae’s ability to listen deeply, ask pointed questions, and produce a compelling story helped earn her four college journalism awards, including Best Sports Feature. But no award is as important to her as the smiles she puts on people’s faces as they read her stories. When she’s not working, Denae enjoys watching sports and rooting for the Dodgers and Lakers.
- Meet Eejoon Choi
Eejoon is a rising senior at the University of Southern California, where she majoring in Fine Arts while double minoring in Animation and Cinematic Arts. As a female artist with red-green colorblindness, her goal is to help make a space for artists with visual disabilities by pushing the limitations of art in this digital era. When she’s not working as a Lab Tech at her school’s Photography Lab, you can find her visiting art galleries or people watching in downtown Los Angeles.
- Meet Jacqueline Ramirez
Jacqueline Ramirez is a recent graduate of Mount Saint Mary’s University, where she received her bachelor’s in Journalism and New Media. She started her journalism journey in 2013 when she joined Boyle Heights Beat, a community newspaper that covers the East Side of Los Angeles. She’s currently a reporter for Boyle Heights Beat and will soon take the lead role for producing its podcast, Radio Pulso, which she also helped start in 2018.
- Meet Katherine Tangalakis-Lippert
Katherine Tangalakis-Lippert is currently a freelance journalist living just outside the San Fernando Valley with her retired service dog, Liberty. She received her bachelor’s in communication from Cal Lutheran in 2019 and followed it up with a master’s degree in specialized journalism from the University of Southern California in May. When she isn’t researching media trends or combing through public records, Katherine likes to bake cookies, grow succulents in her garden and listen to true crime podcasts. Through her work, she aspires to help strengthen the fragile trust between members of the media and the public by sharing untold community stories.
- Meet Noor Bouzidi
Noor Bouzidi got her start in radio by interning at KCRW in Santa Monica. There, she fell in love with audio storytelling. She is an Algerian American from Redlands, California and speaks four languages: English, Arabic, Spanish, and French. Since the age of 18, she has worked in fashion retail and has amassed an impressive collection of statement earrings. She recently graduated from UCLA with a degree in Linguistics and Anthropology and is now interning with KALW in San Francisco.
- Meet Tiffany Mankarios
Tiffany Mankarios is an incoming senior at California State University, Long Beach where she is studying communication studies and journalism. When she’s not reporting for the community newspaper Culver City Observer, tutoring students learning Japanese, teaching recreational cheerleading for underprivileged kids, or volunteering virtually for L.A. Works, you can find her at the beach tanning away. She plans on pursuing a master’s degree in journalism with hopes of becoming a professional news anchor.
- Meet Xochitl Hernández
Xochitl Hernández is a recent graduate of California State University, Northridge where she received her Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance and a minor in Spanish-language journalism. While at CSUN, Xochitl received classical voice and music training in addition to performing in operas, being a multimedia journalist, podcaster, reporter and lead anchor on Valley View News where she reported on issues pertaining to the Latinx community, the 2020 presidential election, COVID-19, the Black Lives Matter movement, and music. As a journalist, artist, and singer, she considers herself a storyteller passionate about people and raising awareness on social issues. Xochitl aspires to combine both her art forms which she has already started to do by creating her own podcast Notes From Her, interviewing and reporting on women of color musicians in the classical and non-classical music industry. She aspires to travel the world as both a reporter and performing artist, combining both multimedia journalism and music to tell stories of Latinx, BIPOC, international, and marginalized communities.
- Meet Yuki Liang
Yuki Liang is a rising junior at the University of Southern California, where she is studying journalism and political economy. She works as a radio producer and technical director at Annenberg Media, a student-run news organization at USC. Yuki is from China and she wants to be a journalist who gives voice to the unheard. She hopes to raise awareness of the critical social, economic, and ecological issues facing people around the world through her work. When she’s not reporting or producing, she loves reading novels, watching movies, and playing the guitar.