Mario Koran

Fellow, New America CA

Mario Koran was a 2016 New America CA fellow. Koran is an education reporter for Voice of San Diego, an online investigative news outlet. His investigations and analyses have revealed problems and helped shape policies in San Diego Unified, the second-largest school district in California. Mario has written for the New York Times, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism.

As a graduate student, Koran led a collaborative project between the Wisconsin Innocence Project and the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism. There, he spent a semester helping Innocence Project attorneys investigate the reliability of testimony from jailhouse informants.

As a 2016 New America California Fellow, Koran worked to improve parent engagement at high-poverty schools in San Diego, paying particular attention to schools that are triply segregated by ethnicity, poverty, and language. Mario reported what he found in a weekly explanatory column, The Learning Curve. Those topics grew into larger investigations, where he identified systemic problems and highlighted potential solutions.

Koran’s master’s in journalism and bachelor's in Spanish literature both come from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, in his home state.