California Counts: Strategies and Skills for Reporting on the U.S. Census

United States 2020 census form - iStock image

When: Friday, March 22

Where: Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism, Wallis Annenberg Hall, Room 106

Time: 8:30 a.m.- 4 p.m. (Lunch is included) 

Offered by: The USC Center for Health Journalism

Watch the Facebook Life streaming starting at 8:30 a.m. Friday, March 22 at

Join us on Facebook to watch a live streaming of our day-long briefing on the U.S. Census. You’ll learn about the challenges facing the counters in a state where an estimated 75 percent of residents are considered hard to count. We will discuss reporting strategies and how the climate of fear in immigrant communities might impede a good count, as well as efforts to delegitimize the U.S. Census, which holds the key to how billions of dollars are distributed to local communities. We’ll decipher what’s in the census anyway – analyzing assumptions built into the census on such fundamental questions as “What is a family?” We’ll also roll up over sleeves in a hands-on workshop on using census data to tell important community stories and close with a session on how newsrooms can be smart about census reporting strategies.

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Topics we will explore together include:

  • Why the Census Matters and What’s at Risk
  • Rolling out the California Census -- Platoon by Platoon
  • Telling Data-Informed Stories Using the Census
  • A Hands-on Census Data Workshop for Journalists


With Topic Experts:

James Christy, Assistant Director of Field Operations, U.S. Census Bureau

Rosalind Gold, Chief Public Policy Officer, NALEO Educational Fund

Ditas Katague, Director, California Complete Count

Charley Johnson, Project Lead, Data Integrity Project at Data & Society

Colin M. Maclay, Executive Director of the USC Annenberg Innovation Lab

Jonathan Tran, Program Manager, The California Endowment 

Celia Valdez, Director of Outreach and Education at Maternal and Child Health Access


With Journalism Experts:

Angeliki Kastanis, Data Reporter, The Associated Press

Kristen Muller, Chief Content Officer, Southern California Public Radio (KPCC)

Mary Jo Webster, Data Editor, Minneapolis Star Tribune

Ben Welsh, Editor, Data Desk, Los Angeles Times


Co-sponsored by the Annenberg Innovation Lab

Offered thanks to the generous support of The California Endowment