Credit: Michael I Schiller

It may come as no surprise that there are some serious podcast aficionados working here at Reveal. Even though producing our weekly hour of investigative news occupies a big chunk of time, we’re always open to new and exciting moments in radio storytelling.

We found quite a few in 2016. Here they are:

  1. “Miss Manhattan” – 99 Percent Invisible

Recommended by: Cheryl Devall, senior radio editor

99% Invisible’s story about a woman at the turn of the last century whose face and figure became the model for countless Beaux Arts sculptures and building adornments. She had a name – Audrey Munson – and after her 15-year career as an artist’s model, her life took some unexpected twists. I love stories that connect the past with the present.   

  1. “In the Dark” – APM Reports

Recommended by: Katharine Mieszkowski, senior reporter; Andrew Donohue, managing editor

APM Reports’ “In the Dark” podcast dissects a fumbled police investigation of a child abduction case that took 27 years to solve. It combines original investigative findings with riveting storytelling. The podcast exposes just how little oversight local law enforcement receive, while critiquing how we’ve tried – and failed – to prevent crimes against children.

– Katharine Mieszkowski

Courageous reporting on a story that – despite the topic’s overwhelming media saturation – was really just sitting there, for decades, waiting to be told. Who would’ve thought you could find a new *investigative* series in such a well-worn story?

– Andrew Donohue

  1. As He Was Stabbing Me, He Told Me, ‘I’m Sorry Dad’ ” – Latino USA

Recommended by: David Rodriguez, intern/researcher

Latino USA did a story on a family in San Bernardino, California, whose son had schizophrenia. The son attacked his father in a mental episode. His parents have been pushing for a bill in preventing similar episodes before they happen. San Bernardino does not enforce Laura’s Law, an assisted outpatient treatment law. This segment also gave me chills from the audio recording of one of the young man’s episodes.

  1. Frame of Reference – Invisibilia

Recommended by: Emily Harger, filmmaker in residence

It really expanded how I think about our different lifestyles and backgrounds. The moment where the Indian boy describes how his father views racism differently than himself because of his past experience with conflict in India was really eye-opening for me.

  1. Renata Adler” – Longform Podcast

Recommended by: Byard Duncan, community manager

This is from 2015, but it’s worth a re-up – especially at a time when unflinching, badass reporting is more necessary than ever. Adler, now 79, is completely fearless, and she seems to not suffer fools in the least. Her body of work backs this up, too: She’s been smacking around intellectual laziness – and its perpetrators – for decades.

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Byard Duncan was a reporter and producer for  engagement and collaborations for Reveal. He managed Reveal’s Reporting Networks, which provide more than 1,000 local journalists across the U.S. with resources and training to continue Reveal investigations in their communities. He also helped lead audience engagement initiatives around Reveal’s stories and assists local reporters in elevating their work to a national platform. In addition to Reveal, Duncan’s work has appeared in GQ, Esquire, The California Sunday Magazine and Columbia Journalism Review, among other outlets. He was part of Reveal’s Behind the Smiles project team, which was named a Pulitzer Prize finalist in 2019. He is the recipient of two Edward R. Murrow Awards, a National Headliner Award, an Al Neuharth Innovation in Investigative Journalism Award, and two first-place awards for feature storytelling from the Society of Professional Journalists and Best of the West. Duncan is based in Reveal's Emeryville, California, office.