A Conversation with Jim Fallows and George Sánchez, recorded February 22, 2022

The United States is experiencing a time of division—urban vs. rural, state vs. local, and red vs. blue. Many of these fissures are most acute within the Ten Across region, a region which features the three largest states, immense population growth, and rapidly changing demographics. It is also a place where our capacity to find common purpose will be essential if we are to adequately address critical challenges regarding water, energy, governance, and equity to the benefit of future generations. So where do we go from here?

Listen in as Ten Across Executive Director, Wellington “Duke” Reiter moderates a lively discussion with esteemed observers of American democracy, James Fallows and George Sánchez, each bringing their unique observations on our current circumstance and how small towns and local communities can shine a light on a new way forward for our democracy.

About our Guests

James Fallows, is a revered journalist, commentator, and author, former editor of U.S. News and World Report, and former editor for the The Atlantic for decades. He has written over 11 books on topics from the environment to democracy. Most recently, with Deborah Fallows, he has co-authored the national best seller Our Towns, A 100,000-Mile Journey Into the Heart of America (also an HBO documentary!) and is co-founder of the Our Towns Civic Foundation. His work has also appeared in many other magazines and as public-radio commentaries since the 1980s and most recently “Breaking News” on Substack. He has won a National Book Award and a National Magazine Award.

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Professor George Sánchez, an award-winning scholar of Chicano history and immigration, is the Director of the University of Southern California (USC) Center for Diversity and Democracy and also teaches American Studies and Ethnicity and History at USC. He is also the award winning author of Boyle Heights: How a Los Angeles Neighborhood Became the Future of American Democracy published through University of California Press. His academic work focuses on both historical and contemporary topics of race, gender, ethnicity, labor, and immigration.

This session was recorded live from the ASU California Center stage located in the Herald Examiner Building, Los Angeles.