In March of 2015, I joined the digital team at KVUE-TV, Austin’s ABC and TEGNA (formerly Gannett) affiliate. As a digital content producer, I write web posts regarding local breaking news and trending topics for KVUE.com. I also report, write and photograph feature and news stories that bring above-average traffic to KVUE.com. Whether I’m in the newsroom or covering events such as the South by Southwest Festival, I am busy managing KVUE’s social media platforms and interacting with the station’s hundreds of thousands of followers.

The following are just a few examples of my work at KVUE.

For a green city, we are not keeping Austin recycling

It’s stinking. It’s rotting. It’s growing.

It’s Austin’s landfill.

“As more and more and more people move to Austin, our landfill grows and grows and grows,” said Susanne Harm with Austin Resource Recovery (ARR), the city’s recycling department.

signageAnd based on a first-of-its-kind study in Austin, ARR found 44 percent of the trash that ends up in that landfill from curbside pick-up at residents’ households is recyclable. Another 46 percent of that trash could be turned into compost.

“We were actually surprised by the number of recyclables and the breakdown,” said Memi Cardenas, the residential and housing expert at ARR. “Almost a quarter of everything in the trash was paper, and paper is the most easy to recycle material.”

The study also found that 13 percent of the trash was plastic, 4 percent was metal and another 4 percent was glass.

Recycling experts at ARR estimate that 58,000 tons of recyclables go to the landfill each year. Those recyclables could fill the University of Texas Tower 29 times…

View full article on KVUE website

In nearly-empty room, Ferrera discusses Latino vote at SXSW

America Ferrerra talkIn a South by Southwest ballroom with rows and rows of chairs set up for Tuesday’s Interactive talk about young Latino voters featuring actress America Ferrera, most of the chairs remained empty.

The talk, which also included Voto Latino CEO and President Maria Teresa Kumar, focused on the ever-growing young Latino population and their lack of participation in the voting process.

During the 2012 presidential election, only 48 percent of eligible Latino voters turned out to the polls, according to the Pew Research Center.

When Ferrera walked onto the stage, she immediately pointed out the “elephant in the room.”

“It’s not a packed house, it’s important to acknowledge that,” Ferrera said. “This is the level of interest in this conversation among the many conversations happening right now.”

It’s a conversation that involves 27 million Latinos eligible to vote…

View full article on KVUE website

In East Austin, you can fly

DSC_0803_EDITEDNestled between a vegan bakery and a small home along East Cesar Chavez Street sits Trapeze Texas.

Adjacent to long-standing restaurant Juan in a Million, the open lot saddles up against the sidewalk of the busy street. Passersby link their fingers through the fence and utter “wows” and “ahhs” as thrill-seekers jump off a platform 22 feet above.

It’s that foot traffic and proximity to Downtown Austin that led owners Theresa Kirby and Russell Codona Torretto to jump on the available lease months ago.

The area, which they said now feels like home, has undergone serious changes in recent years. Previously the neighborhood was old and home to primarily Latino residents. Now hip bars, restaurants, art galleries and even a cat café have begun to take over the area.

For the neighborhood’s residents, watching from their front porches as people propel through the air doesn’t shock them much.

“We were talking to some neighbors and they said, ‘We were actually more surprised by a sale down the street than we were about a flying trapeze rig,’” owner Kirby said…

View full article on KVUE website