Raised in Los Angeles by way of Tehran after coming to the U.S. as a refugee, I’m a journalist who never turns down the chance to follow a good story.
I specialize in, and am passionate about longform, narrative story telling and international reporting.
My work has been supported by a number of fellowships and grants, including the International Reporting Project Fellowship in Global Religion Reporting, Metlife Foundation Journalists in Aging Fellowship, Hrant Dink Foundation Fellowship for Turkish-Armenian Dialogue and a California Health Journalism Fellowship. I am currently a 2017 Images of Voices & Hope Restorative Narrative Fellow, undertaking a project on the intersection of Native American sovereignty and science.
In 2015, I became the winner of the Write A House residency, a unique program for writers that takes place in Detroit, Michigan.
During the course of my reporting, I have traveled around three internationally unrecognized de-facto republics still reeling from the devastating impacts of war, investigated medical marijuana use in assisted living facilities, reported on Iranian refugees in Europe converting to Christianity, drunk camel milk in Mongolia and visited the world’s only forensics lab that solves crimes against animals.
My interest lies in subcultures, marginalized and under-reported communities and issues, immigration, displacement, identity, the Caucasus and Middle East and how ordinary people are affected by the world, its leaders and their policies.
My reporting has appeared in the New York Times, The Guardian, BBC, Foreign Policy, Pacific Standard, Marie Claire, Los Angeles Magazine, Al Jazeera America, Newsweek, Los Angeles Times, LA Weekly, EurasiaNet, The Atlantic.com, Mental Floss, Roads & Kingdoms, Brownbook, Narratively and several other national and international publications.
I'm currently documenting the Armenian experience in America through food with my project, Dining in Diaspora, where I'm tracing the intersection of cuisine and agriculture with genocide, immigration, identity and more. In 2019, I was the key note speakers for the Kalamazoo Foodways Symposium. I once ran Ianyan Magazine, an independent online publication about Armenia and its international diaspora. I've also conducted research on the Caucasus and the Middle East and its diasporas for places like This American Life and Small Media.
Previously, I worked as an editor, collaborating with publications like Atlanta Journal-Constitution, USA Today and Hearst. I hold a B.A. in journalism from California State University, Northridge.