About Us

Ten years, three hundred episodes and a thousand stories. Socal Connected is LA’s longest running news-documentary series. We make what’s important interesting.

SoCal Connected is KCET’s weekly award-winning news documentary series, presenting a mix of investigative reporting and richly textured narratives in a thoughtful and compelling way.  Now in its 10th season, Socal Connected is the winner of nearly every major local and national journalism award, including a Walter Cronkite Award, George Foster Peabody®, two Alfred I. duPont-Columbia silver batons, and 29 regional Emmy® awards. "SoCal Connected" airs Tuesday nights at 8 p.m on KCET and 7 p.m. on PBS SoCal. Click here for a complete list of awards. 


Please read this prepared 2020 report summarizing Socal Connected’s impact, accomplishments and goals.


Our Team

Executive Producer

Karen Foshay Author Bio Picture

Karen Foshay

Karen Foshay is the Executive Producer of SoCal Connected.  While a senior producer at KCET, she won two duPont-Columbia silver batons and a George Foster Peabody Award. She is a veteran journalist who has worked in both radio and television, including NBC News, CBS News, Al Jazeera America, KPCC and KCRW. 





Director of Production Management

Kathy Kasaba
Kathy Kasaba

Kathy Kasaba is the Director of Production Management for SoCal Connected. She has been with KCETLink since 1981 and has worked on a variety of KCETLink projects such as "Departures," "LinkAsia," Pledge specials, Huell Howser's "Visiting" and "California Gold," as well as national PTV shows including "American Playhouse," "Tavis Smiley," "Puzzle Place" and "Your Turn to Care." Kathy is a native Californian and received her B.A. in Television Production from Pepperdine University. 



Associate Director of Production Management

Robert McDonnell
Robert McDonnell

Robert McDonnell is the winner of two Los Angeles Area Emmy Awards. He has been Production Supervisor of SoCal Connected since 2012. Since first joining KCET in 1993, Robert's worked in program development, production and post-production on a wide range of award-winning KCET television programs including: historical documentaries ("American Experience: Woodrow Wilson," "Chasing the Sun," "Auschwitz: Inside the Nazi State"); drama series ("PBS Hollywood Presents," "American Family"); animation series ("Jim Henson's Sid the Science Kid"); arts specials ("Craft in America," "LA County Holiday Celebration"); science series ("Wired Science"); informational series ("Your Turn to Care"); and daily talk shows ("A Place of Our Own," "Los Niños en Su Casa"). Robert graduated from Indiana University with degrees in Broadcast Journalism, Political Science, and Film. 


Segment Producers

Gina Pollack photo
Gina Pollack

Gina Pollack is a documentary filmmaker and a multimedia producer, interested in telling stories about the intersection of policy and the human experience. Her short film “Undue Burden” was a New York Times Op Doc and debuted at the Tribeca Film Festival in 2017. She comes to KCET from KCRW, where she produced stories on art, pop culture, and politics for the show Press Play with Madeleine Brand. She also helped develop the KCRW podcast “The Document,” a mashup of documentary film and radio with Producer Matt Holzman. She is an alum of the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.





Ben Bergman headshot
Ben Bergman

Ben Bergman is currently a contributing business reporter at NPR and a guest host at KPCC. Previously he was a senior business and economics reporter at KPCC, a senior producer at Gimlet Media, and a producer at NPR's Morning Edition. He has also written for The New York Times and Columbia Journalism Review and was a reporting intern at The Times. Ben was a 2017-2018 Knight-Bagehot Fellow in Economic and Business Journalism at Columbia Business School. 






Ralph Harris headshot
Ralph Harris

Ralph Harris became the narrator of Socal Connected in 2018. He's had a career in television, film and on stage as both an actor and comedian. Originally born in Philadelphia, he now calls Los Angeles home. 





Multimedia Producers

Dennis Nishi
Dennis Nishi

Dennis Nishi is a multimedia producer that enjoys working across all platforms to tell stories in new and interesting ways. Dennis has been a regular freelance contributor of print stories, video and artwork to the Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune and several NPR and BBC World Service radio programs. His editorial illustrations have also been featured on the covers of the New Republic, the Washington Post and other national publications. 



Michael Ray
Michael Ray



M​​ichael Ray is a multimedia producer and journalist with experience from shooting and editing video, to field producing and writing scripts. He comes to KCET from Chicago where he has worked commercially and creatively with independent production companies like Hootenanny and Hatfield Post, to national outlets like NBC News.





Tori Edgar
Tori Edgar

Tori Edgar is multimedia producer, journalist and a native of Southern California. Previously, Tori worked for Dateline NBC News in the Los Angeles bureau. She graduated from Chapman University with a B.F.A. in Television and Broadcast Journalism.





Associate Producer

Denise Chan headshot
Denise Chan

Denise Chan is a multimedia journalist with a background in digital advertising and research & insights. She has a B.A. in Ethnic Studies from UC Berkeley and a M.S. in Journalism from University of Southern California. Denise is a Chinese-American born and raised in the San Gabriel Valley.



Production Assistant

Ann Valdes headshot
Ann Valdes

Ann Valdés works on KCET programs such as Artbound, City Rising, and SoCal Connected. An alumna of Humboldt State University, Ann has a B.A. in Art History and Studio Art. Prior to working at KCET she worked at Getty Museum.






Larry Altman Headshot
Larry Altman, contributing writer

Larry Altman, is a veteran Southern California reporter who has been covering crime and court cases for three decades. He was named the Society of Professional Journalists' Distinguished Journalist in 2006.






Trevor Jackson photographer photo
Trevor Jackson, contributing photographer

Trevor Jackson is a native Angeleno, born and raised in West Los Angeles. He works in the film industry while a full-time student at Loyola Marymount University. Trevor has interests in documentary storytelling through photography and film.








Helki Frantzen filming
Helki Frantzen, contributing cinematographer

Helki Frantzen is a documentary cinematographer and director based in Los Angeles and works regularly for various documentary directors and news outlets. Her work as cinematographer frequently appears on PBS SOCAL, and can also be seen on Vice News, and the Atlantic, and has been screened at Camden International Film Festival, DOC NYC and Big Sky Documentary Festival.




"SoCal Connected" is the winner of a Peabody®, two duPont Awards, 29 Emmy® Awards, 22 Golden Mikes, and 51 LA Press Club Awards. Click here to see a complete list. 

Contact Us

Questions, comments, story ideas? Send us an email at Newsdesk@kcet.org.

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