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First Person

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First Person: The Connection Between Improv Comedy And Therapy

April 16
By Marissa Cabrera

During the day, Zach Stones is a clinical supervisor at the San Diego Center for Children working to support youth and families in foster care and the juvenile justice system. But a few nights a week he has a second career doing improv comedy.

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First Person: Las Vegas Survivor

April 2
By Michael Lipkin

Shiva Ghaed was one of the thousands of Las Vegas shooting survivors. A clinical psychologist at Naval Medical Center San Diego, she founded a support group for fellow survivors and their families.

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For San Diego Students, School Walkout Is A Warm-Up For The Ballot Box

March 14
By Megan Burks

More than 30 San Diego-area schools have signed up to host walkouts against school gun violence Wednesday.

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First Person: Living In A Car In San Diego With 3 Children

March 5
By Brooke Ruth

More than 500 families in San Diego County are homeless, according to the last point-in-time count. Lola Cheatham and her three daughters are one of those families.

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First Person: From Refugee To Proprietor

Feb. 19
By Tarryn Mento

Queentabel Banka opened her hair braiding business in San Diego's City Heights neighborhood shortly after arriving in the U.S.

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First Person: A Life's Trajectory Changed By A Grand Prize Win

Nov. 20, 2017
By Michael Lipkin

Michael Brunker thinks back to his 11th birthday a lot. It was 1963 and Brunker lived with his parents in Detroit. Ernie Harwell, the Detroit Tigers' announcer, was officiating a raffle with a classic Motor City grand prize: his-and-hers cars, a Dodge Dart and Plymouth Fury.

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First Person: Veterans Museum's Poet Laureate On Honoring All Who Served

Nov. 6, 2017
By Marissa Cabrera

Alyce Smith-Cooper, the first poet laureate at the Veterans Museum at Balboa Park, talks about how she is paying tribute to the "unsung and unacknowledged" heroes of the U.S. military.

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First Person: Telling Students They, Too, Can Go From Compton To Neurobiology

Oct. 30, 2017
By Megan Burks

University of California faculty who were the first in their families to go to college are making an effort this year to connect with first-generation students. “You would not have predicted that I would be a full professor,” says a UC San Diego neurobiologist.

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First Person: The 2007 Wildfire Took Our Home But 'We Had Our Faith, Our Friends And Our Family'

Oct. 16, 2017
By Brooke Ruth

Jay and Kendra Jeffcoat were on a family vacation in Colorado when they learned their Rancho Bernardo home burned down in the Witch Creek fire in 2007.

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First Person: Farmhand To Flower Tycoon

Oct. 2, 2017
By Michael Lipkin

Ismael Resendiz started his farming career when he was about 13, cutting sugarcane with his father and brothers in Sinaloa, Mexico. Now he is one of the largest suppliers of protea, exotic flowers originally from South Africa.

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First Person: Diane And Richard Nares

Sept. 25, 2017
By Megan Burke

Their life together started like a storybook romance and then was tested by a devastating loss. Now married 24 years, they have turned personal tragedy into a commitment to help others.

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First Person: After Nearly 20 Years Of Making Music, San Diego Songwriter 'Hopes It All Matters'

Sept. 18, 2017
By Marissa Cabrera

As the co-founder of the Redwoods Music, a San Diego-based record label, Alfred Howard writes lyrics for five bands that span various genres. Since moving to San Diego nearly 20 years ago, he's recorded 21 albums.

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First Person: Balboa Park Carousel Operator Has Worked There Since He Was 16, Now He's 60

Sept. 11, 2017
By Brooke Ruth

Not many people work at the same place from their first day of work until retirement. But Bill Brown has.

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First Person: The Healing Love Of A Therapy Dog

Aug. 28, 2017
By Megan Burke

Since 2012, Bob Schultze and his Italian greyhound, Hudson, have made more than 200 visits to memory care units, senior centers, the VA and palliative care facilities in San Diego, all in an effort to help people feel better and spread a little four-legged joy.

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First Person: Holocaust Survivor Reflects On Charlottesville

Aug. 21, 2017
By Michael Lipkin

Fanny Krasner Lebovits has shared her story of surviving the Holocaust with thousands of people, hoping similar hatred won't be allowed to flourish. So she was aghast as she watched coverage of the white supremacists rallying in Charlottesville, some carrying Nazi flags.

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First Person: Jacumba School Closes After Almost 90 Years

Aug. 14, 2017
By Brooke Ruth

Sixth, seventh and eighth grade students who attended Jacumba Middle School will not be returning to that school when classes begin on Aug. 21.

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First Person: San Diego Tribal Elder Turns 100

July 17, 2017
By Michael Lipkin

Soon after Joe Renteria was born 100 years ago in Emporia, Kansas, his Cherokee parents placed him in a Catholic orphanage. It wasn't until he came to San Diego decades later that he began to think about his heritage.

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Neither Male Nor Female: 'Nonbinary' People See Hope In California Bill

July 3, 2017
By Andrew Bowen

A bill in Sacramento, authored by Senator Toni Atkins, would allow people to choose a third gender option, "nonbinary," on state documents. KPBS spoke with one person who identifies as nonbinary to see what the bill would mean to them.

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First Person: San Diego Nonprofit Brings Yoga To Those Trying To Rebuild Their Lives

June 19, 2017
By Brooke Ruth

OG Yoga is a San Diego nonprofit that brings yoga to those who may not normally be exposed to the practice. That can include those dealing with poverty, abuse, incarceration and PTSD.

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First Person: ‘We Are Us Because Of The Lovings’

June 12, 2017
By Marissa Cabrera

As the nation marks the 50th anniversary of the Loving v. Virginia U.S. Supreme Court ruling, which overturned laws prohibiting interracial marriage, Amy and Jamie Wise of San Diego are sharing their own love story.

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First Person: Singing About Mental Illness

June 5, 2017
By Michael Lipkin

Musician Veronica May was diagnosed with bipolar disorder in 2008, and her latest album focuses on her experiences with mania and depression.

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First Person: San Diego Foster Youth Heads To College

May 22, 2017
By Megan Burke

Before all the pomp and circumstance of high school commencement ceremonies in June, a small group of San Diego high school seniors will celebrate another graduation, from foster care.

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First Person: Imprisoned For Murder

May 15, 2017
By Michael Lipkin

Putting on his high school football uniform made Billy Johnson feel like he was part of a family and let him dream about college and a possible sports career. But Johnson said he got involved in selling drugs and eventually killed his dealer. In 1992 he was sentenced to 16 years-to-life in prison.

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First Person: First Latina In Space To Be Inducted Into US Astronaut Hall of Fame

May 8, 2017
By Marissa Cabrera

In 1993, La Mesa native Ellen Ochoa became the first Latina to travel to space. As a NASA astronaut she went on four space missions and logged almost 1,000 hours in orbit.

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First Person: Mother And Son Fight For Environmental Justice

April 24, 2017
By Marissa Cabrera

Like many teens who grew up in Barrio Logan, Francisco Martinez suffers from asthma. His condition led his mom to join the fight for environmental justice. Now, he’s following in her footsteps.

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