Across nine episodes of America by the Numbers, topics ranging from the effect of PTSD on veterans in Guam to the ways in which socio-economic status can affect infant mortality were explored through personal interviews and animated infographics. I worked closely with Futuro Media Group to produce data visualizations explaining the shifting landscape of American demographics and to give viewers a window into oft-underreported societal changes taking place across the nation. See the reel of work from the first season, hosted by veteran journalist Maria Hinojosa, below.
My involvement focused on conceptualizing, designing and animating visualizations and infographics across eight episodes, an election special, and web-only content. The series went on to win an Imagen Award for "Best National Informational Program."
One reminder that America by the Numbers has provided actionable information to the public came when Last Week Tonight with John Oliver shared several clips from the series in a segment on the U.S. territories of Guam, Puerto Rico and American Samoa. The clips came from the episode “Island of Warriors,” which brought to light the hardships faced by military veterans in Guam, and one featured a visualization I designed showing Guam ranking dead last in per capita spending on medical care by state and territory. That same segment from Last Week Tonight was then cited in a Ninth Circuit judge’s opinion on Guam’s ‘insular cases’ in a footnote addressing the “less than complete application of the Constitution in some U.S. territories.” This experience highlights to me the effect that our work can have, even indirectly, and that documentary filmmaking and information design can have tangible effects on policy.