Team Bios


Publisher, Editor Gabriel Kahn is a professor of professional practice at the USC Annenberg School of Journalism. His research focus is around the economics of the media industry and he teaches classes on business reporting, economics and innovation. He drives an electric car, which he’s always eager to talk about, usually, for much too long.


Jake de Grazia a software product manager, research project manager, and editor. Past and present clients include AP Stylebook, the Norman Lear Center, Trueey, the National Football League, and RUST, LTD. He has a master’s degree in journalism from USC’s Annenberg School.



Reporter Joshua Chang, or Jaeha Chang, is a sophomore majoring in journalism at USC Annenberg. He breaks down LAPD hate crime reports and loses his faith in humanity every day. He was born in Korea and spent his entire life in Beijing, China, but don’t be fooled: he is fluent in California English.


Designer Amanda Curtis is a senior in the USC Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy studying the relationships between interactive media and human behavior. She comes from the East Coast, so don’t talk about LA bagels around her.


Reporter Shirsho Dasgupta is a journalism grad student at USC Annenberg, specializing in data investigations and urban affairs. When he is not geeking out on public records and datasets, he generally reads up on politics and philosophy. He is also a soccer writer with bylines in The Guardian and VICE.


Darrell Florence is a graduate of the USC Marshall School of Business. He writes the Crosstown newsletter and is also a member of the Crosstown Intel team. Darrell is also the co-founder of two other companies called Gestalt and NewsMeme. If you ever want to talk clothes or memes, he’s your guy.


Designer Racquel Fygenson is a senior in the USC Iovine and Young Academy studying the Arts, Technology, and Business of Innovation. Racquel is especially interested in visualizing data to make it understandable and engaging. She is committed to making data-based information about civic safety and the effects of policy more accessible to the public.


Reporter Lorraine Ge is an undergraduate majoring in Communication at USC Annenberg and minoring in Entrepreneurship at the USC Marshall School of Business. After realizing that she couldn’t get hired as a chocolate taste-tester without major health issues, she focused her efforts on other pursuits, discovering that nothing satisfies her more than solving problems, thinking outside-of-the-box and doing social good.


Designer Shirley Huang is a sophomore at the USC Jimmy Iovine and Andre Young Academy. Most immediately from the Bay Area, she has also spent lots of time living on the East Coast and China. She’s a multidisciplinary designer who specializes in visual storytelling and product thinking, and enjoys pursuing illustration, painting, and green tea ice cream in her free time.


Reporter Ava Macha is a recent alumna of USC Annenberg and graduated with a B.A. in Journalism with a minor in International Relations. During her time at USC, she developed multimedia projects spanning web, audio and video and also worked with multiple startup media production companies. She comes from Boise Idaho, which is in Canada.


PR Coordinator Sarah Martin is a Junior at USC Annenberg majoring in Public Relations. Her specialties are strategic planning and social media outreach. A Los Angeles native, her knowledge of the culture and atmosphere attracts her to meaningful local PR work. She is also passionate about political campaigning and your dog. You can find her at Tito’s Tacos on Washington & Sepulveda.


Engineer Heet Sheeth is a Master’s student in computer science specializing in data science at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering. He is passionate about building data-driven applications which can solve day-to-day life problems. In his free time, he likes going for hikes, reading about politics, conspiracies, and entrepreneurship, and also watching movies. Find more about him on LinkedIn. We are expecting him to solve our traffic problem.


Reporter Nisha Venkat is a sophomore studying journalism at USC Annenberg. She’s from Dubai, which is always hot and not full of flying cars (a surprisingly common misconception among Americans). Her interests include creative writing, watching Planet Earth, and exploring every brand and flavor of instant ramen there is.


Editor Lauren M. Whaley is a health care policy reporter and childbirth photographer. She once took five high school women on a 45-day canoe trip in the Canadian Arctic. She loves school, and has spent time at Bowdoin College, USC Annenberg and MIT. Her personal goal for 2019 is to take one photograph each day and publish it online.


Designer Sihan Wu is a Master’s student in Communication Management at the USC Annenberg. She loves everything creative: product design, data visualization, photography, illustration, cooking, the list can go on forever. She is also a sneakerhead, paying back 200% of her salary that earned from her last internship, Jordan brand PR intern, to the brand. Fortunately, there is nothing for her to buy at this job.


Designer Zhuxin Xiong is a graduate student at the USC Annenberg School for Journalism. As a product designer, she enjoys using data-driven UX design to tell great product stories and solve user problems. With working experiences in Uber and other startups, she loves new products that make the city better.


Engineer George Constantinou, is a PhD student in Computer Science and is affiliated with the Integrated Media Systems Center (IMSC) at USC Viterbi School of Engineering. At Crosstown he manages the crime and air quality data collection and develops tools and products for their analysis and visualization. His research focuses on spatio-temporal location popularity, to identify the hotspots in Los Angeles. You might be wondering where his accent comes from; that’s because he is from Cyprus!


Engineer Mingxuan Yue, from Shenyang, China, is a PhD student in computer science at the USC Viterbi School of Engineering. His research interest focuses on spatial-temporal data mining, which means he knows the precise moment when the traffic will clear up.



Erick Moen, Naylee Nagda, Mara Pometti, Cyrus Shahabi, Dan Toomey

Safety Map

Neighborhood Tracker

Crime Tracker