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Biography

Soul-stirring, interdisciplinary work has garnered Al Letson national recognition and devoted fans. In 2008 Letson created, hosted, and executive produced State of the Re:Union (SOTRU). Every episode SOTRU examined America through the lens of community. The program aired on more than 300 NPR stations, receiving critical acclaim, and numerous awards, including a Peabody Award (2014), three consecutive National Edward R. Murrow Awards (2012, 2013, 2014).

In 2015 SOTRU ended production and Letson joined the Center for Investigative Reporting to help launch and host public radio's first hour-long investigative journalism show, Reveal. Reveal’s first pilot, The VA’s Opiate Overload, won a Peabody Award (2013). Since that time Reveal has gained a large audience and is heard on over 400 public radio stations and over 1 million downloads a month. In 2016 Letson launched his own podcast, showcasing a little bit of errthang. Errthang is just that, everything: storytelling, radio drama, pop culture reviews, and interviews. Letson is basically taking all the things that are floating in his head and turning it into a mixtape of delight for listeners.

A true renaissance man, Letson got his start on stage as a performance poet where he established himself as a heavyweight in the Poetry Slam community, being a featured on venues such as HBO’s Def Poetry Jam, and CBS’s 2004 Final Four PreGame. Drawing on his background as a performance poet, Letson seamlessly weaves spoken word into the fabric of his theatre work. Several of his plays produced on stages across the country. His solo performance Summer in Sanctuary opened at the Abingdon Theatre company off-Broadway in the summer of 2012 and ran for nine months at the Marsh in San Francisco.

A self-described comic nerd, in 2017 Letson was picked by DC Comics to join the DC Comics Writer’s Workshop. The workshop trains writers to work for DC Comics, writing iconic characters like Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman. While it may seem like his interests are varied, they are all aspects of who Al Letson is, a storyteller for the new millennium.

Articles

Inequality

Losing ground

On this episode, Reveal investigates the claim of Eddie Wise, the son of a sharecropper, who says the USDA treated him unfairly because of his race.

Oct 12, 2019
The Trump Era

Commander-in-tweet

These days, a presidential tweet can dictate the news cycle for days on end. But is it driving us to distraction?

Sep 28, 2019

Scuttling science

Advisory panels slashed – environmental regulations rolled back. How the Trump Administration uses questionable science to justify its policies.

Sep 14, 2019
Inequality

The right to boycott

We look at where an Israel boycott clause in employment contracts comes from and weigh it against the First Amendment right to free speech.

Sep 7, 2019
The (Un)Scientific Method

Farm wars

The herbicide dicamba is causing a civil war in farm country, honeybees are rustling in California’s almond groves and more.

Aug 31, 2019
Inequality

Year of return

We reflect on how the legacy of slavery has reverberated through the generations to the present.

Aug 24, 2019
The Cost of Choice

The cost of school choice

Dominique Martin was thrilled to get a state-funded voucher to send her daughter to private school. We go to Louisiana to investigate the cost of school choice.

Aug 17, 2019