Karen is a reporter and editor – mostly in audio; also some film and print.
Most recently, she was a co-host of NPR's Planet Money. Prior to that, she was a reporter at This American Life and More Perfect. Karen started her journalism life as a freelance reporter, making stories for Radiolab, Reply All,
Karen's stories blend in-depth reporting with narrative storytelling about everything from the death penalty to the world’s largest treehouse, gerrymandering, America's first major interrogation program, teenage angst, public housing, religion, pandemic testing and a showdown in a Utah strip mall parking lot. Her Rough Translation story that followed an ISIS hostage rescue mission for 4+ years won the Overseas Press Club award for the best international audio reporting of 2019.
Before becoming a journalist, Karen spent several years as a speechwriter, working in more than 20 countries. She managed communications for the CEO of Cisco, and later moved to India to work with Cisco's Chief Globalization Officer. After returning to the United States, she ran communications for Cisco's corporate social responsibility program and for the Skoll Foundation. Karen is a graduate of the Transom audio documentary program.
Rough Translation, On the Media, The Moth, Pop Up Magazine, The Rumpus and others.
Karen taught / teaches audio documentary at the Columbia, NYU
and CUNY Graduate Schools of Journalism. She is also currently a producer on an upcoming film by Oscar-winning filmmaker Katy Scoggin. And previously, Karen was a Moth story coach and an editor at The Rumpus and Cowbird.