Vanessa M. Gezari writes about ordinary, extraordinary people whose stories make the news vivid and personal. Since 2001, her reporting has taken her to four continents, 10 countries, and many corners of the United States. After graduating from Yale, she covered local news, government, and crime at The Blade in Toledo, Ohio, and the Chicago Tribune. On the eve of September 11, 2001, she left the United States to freelance in India and spent the next three years in South Asia, reporting from India, Pakistan, Kashmir, Sri Lanka, and Nepal, and covering Afghanistan for the Chicago Tribune from 2002-2003. Gezari went on to become a foreign and national writer at the St. Petersburg Times (now the Tampa Bay Times), traveling the Gulf Coast to document the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina and reporting on disaster and resilience from Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Russia, and England. In 2007, she traveled to Liberia on an International Reporting Project fellowship at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies to write about the rehabilitation of child soldiers. Her work has appeared in The Washington Post, the Los Angeles Times, Slate, The New Republic, and Columbia Journalism Review, among others, and she has trained Afghan journalists and mentored reporters at Pajhwok Afghan News, Afghanistan’s largest independent news agency. A former Knight-Wallace Fellow at the University of Michigan, she is writing a book about U.S. military efforts to understand Afghan culture.