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Meet the Team

Illustration of Lisa Gray, podcast host
Lisa Gray
Podcast Host
@LisaGray_HouTX

Someone from Houston you should know about
Phyllis Frye, the country’s first transgender judge, transitioned in the early 1970s — when hardly anyone in Texas, including Phyllis, could say exactly what it meant to be trans. She researched her “condition” in medical libraries.

She got fired from her job, and was ostracized at law school. She and her wife often went hungry, and Phyllis was afraid she’d be physically attacked by strangers. But she stood up straight, like the Aggie she is, and she prayed, and she fought hard for trans rights. She’s the bravest person I know.

The tourist trap in town that’s actually great
NASA’s Mission Control room — The place where Americans literally shot for the Moon.      

Illustration of Dina Kesbeh lead producer
Dina Kesbeh
Lead Producer
@dinakesbeh

Where I’d take you to eat in my city, and what I’d order
Cafe Caspian, one of my favorite Iranian restaurants in Htown! It’s so beautiful from the inside and they have such a lovely outdoor seating area. Without skipping a beat I’d order for us Kashk -E Bademjan, Koobideh Kabobs (the chicken and beef) and the star of the show: Ghormeh Sabzi! 

Someone from Houston you should know about
Mo Amer is a name everyone should know. His story speaks so well to the refugee and immigrant struggle. To go from completely uprooting your life as a child and coming to a country you’re not familiar with and then working your way up to having your own show on a major streaming platform (Mo on Netflix) is so inspirational .

It’s more personal for me because he comes not just from my community, the Palestinian-American community, but also from my neighborhood, Alief. A neighborhood that is where so many immigrants come and settle. 

Illustration of Carli Jones, audio producer
Carli Jones
Audio Producer

A place in Houston not enough people know about
Wild Stallion wine vineyard, it’s something I recently found out about myself. 

Where I’d take you to eat in Houston
Grace’s restaurant and I would order the chicken fried chicken with mac and cheese and mashed potatoes

Someone from Houston you should know about
Trae tha Truth is a former rapper who does a ton of things for our city and other cities. I picked him because he’s constantly organizing events to help out people in our city. 

Illustration of Brooke Lewis, newsletter editor
Brooke Lewis
Newsletter Editor
@brookelewisa

Where I’d take you to eat in Houston
Escalante’s is my go to Tex-Mex in Houston. My mouth waters just thinking about their guacamole and quesadillas. 

Something we do better in Houston than anywhere else
Help each other out. I have seen it time and time again–whether it’s Hurricane Harvey, a global pandemic, a freeze. Our city comes together when tragedy strikes and it always brings out the best in us. 

The tourist trap in town that’s actually great
You have to go to the Breakfast Klub and get their chicken and waffles. Even though there’s always a line (even on Monday!), it’s so worth it once you taste the first bite.