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"Hunger In Texas" Highlights For Investigative Category | 2021 Scripps Howard Awards

West Texas Food Bank Staff Pack Trunks And Truck Beds In Presidio
Paul Flahive / Texas Public Radio
In Presidio, West Texas Food Bank staff pack trunks and truck beds with meal boxes at a food distribution site.

Texas Public Radio published extensively on hunger in Texas for the first eight months of the pandemic. Paul Flahive's reporting on hunger — especially the investigative components — spurred the creation of more longform reporting and a new podcast.

The following is a selection of 10 stories highlighting TPR's coverage on hunger in Texas during the COVID-19 crisis. Please click on the bolded links to listen to audio and to see the full online presentation for each story.


Hunger In Texas: No End In Sight For Pandemic Food Lines | September 23, 2020

This statewide radio special — which aired in the San Antonio, Austin, Houston and Dallas metro areas among others — combines the first two episodes of"The Shakeout" podcast in radio broadcast form.


Questions And Cancellation Create Doubts For San Antonio-Based Event Planner's USDA Contract | May 28, 2020

USDA Extends Contracts For Some Companies But Advocates Still Want Changes To Feeding Program | June 18, 2020

Congress Investigates Federal Food Program With Ties to Controversial San Antonio Company | August 25, 2020

TPR Sues USDA For Explanation of $39M Food Box Contract Awarded To Wedding Planner With Little Experience | October 1, 2020

Documents Reveal San Antonio Event Company CRE8AD8 May Have Misled USDA In $39M Contract Bid | October 1, 2020


Finding Food In The Desert: Increasing Number Of Families In West Texas Are Going Hungry | July 1, 2020

Food Banks Across Texas, U.S. Brace For 'Perfect Storm' Of August Challenges | July 22, 2020

Did The Number Of Hungry Texans Just Drop By More Than A Million People? Probably Not. | September 11, 2020

Pandemic Drives More Americans To Food Banks | October 7, 2020


Letter from Congress subcommitee to USDA | October 9, 2020

Item #4 in this letter from the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Nutrition, Oversight and Departmental Operations to the Secretary of Agriculture specifically mentions reporting from TPR on CRE8AD8 misleading the USDA. The letter also specifically requests that the USDA provide documents in response to the station’s Freedom of Information Act request.

Jan Ross Piedad Sakian is TPR’s News Operations Producer. In this role, she develops strategy on collaborative and digital initiatives for the station. Since 2016, Jan Ross has served in a coordinating capacity for TPR’s state and national partners, including The Texas Newsroom.