Bonnie Bertram is a Senior Producer at Retro Report and the lead producer and Pulitzer Center grantee for Retro Report’s five-part series “Hitting Home,” about housing and evictions during the coronavirus pandemic. She was also the Co-Executive Producer of the primetime series “Retro Report on PBS.” Her short film on vaccine hesitancy was nominated for a News and Documentary Emmy Award and her report on the McDonald’s coffee lawsuit was nominated for a Syracuse University Mirror Award. She wrote and produced a short film in partnership with Frontline PBS on the history of Guantánamo Bay’s extrajudicial legal status. Bonnie spent much of her career as a producer at CNN and has also worked at Time.com and Bloomberg TV. Her articles have appeared in Vanity Fair, the International Herald Tribune, The Daily Beast, and elsewhere. She is a graduate of the University of California, Berkeley.
The Rise of SWAT: How Cops Became Soldiers
As police have become more militarized, the role of SWAT teams has morphed – from use in emergency situations to fighting the drug war.
Burden of Richmond Evictions Weighs Heaviest in Black Neighborhoods
An eviction moratorium has slowed filings in cities like Richmond, but it hasn’t stopped them, and Black tenants are at highest risk.
Activating a Generation: From Live Aid to the Ice Bucket Challenge
Thirty years after “Live Aid” changed the face of charity fundraising, clicktivism has taken center stage. If you share, re-tweet and like, are you making the world a better place?
Tabletop to Tablet: Using Dungeons & Dragons to Combat Screen Addiction
The role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons, once at the center of a moral panic, is now seen as a counterbalance to the problem of screen addiction.
The Misunderstood McDonald's Hot Coffee Lawsuit
Stella Liebeck was vilified when she was awarded millions after spilling McDonald’s coffee in her lap. Her complaint sounded frivolous. But the facts told another story.
Facing Eviction Trailer
Since the summer of 2020, we’ve documented the impact of the pandemic on housing and evictions. We followed tenants, landlords, lawyers, judges, sheriffs and social workers across the U.S. who were affected. Facing Eviction airs on PBS Frontline on July 26 at 10/9c.
Tenants Facing Eviction Over Covid-19 Look to a 1970s Solution
An idea from a tenant rebellion in the 70s could help renters facing eviction.
Suing the President: The Students Who Challenged the Travel Ban
With the release of Donald Trump’s new travel ban, a brief look at a Yale group that fought the original ban.
'Why Hasn't Sexual Harassment Disappeared?'
From naming the problem in the 1970s, to bringing it out of the shadows in the 90s, to a growing accountability today – the evolution of sexual harassment in the workplace.
Searching for Better Answers
On the heels of a national measles scare, Google announced that it is refining its search results for hundreds of medical conditions to show only vetted resources and web sites.
Anita Hill Testified in 1991. But How Much Has Changed?
Accusations by Professor Christine Blasey Ford against Judge Brett Kavanaugh in his Supreme Court confirmation hearing, have us looking back at Anita Hill’s 1991 testimony in the hearing of U.S. Supreme Court nominee Clarence Thomas.
Perp Walks: When Police Roll Out the Blue Carpet
Perp walk: Unfair maneuver or a strong warning to would-be criminals?
Transgender Rights, Won Over Decades, Face New Restrictions
More than 50 years after the Stonewall uprising marked the birth of a movement for LGBTQ+ rights, transgender activists continue to push for inclusion.
How Fear of the Measles Vaccine Took Hold
Skepticism and fear surrounding vaccines were fed by a flawed study done in 1998 linking the MMR vaccine to autism. The study was quickly discredited, we’re still dealing with the repercussions.
Facing Eviction: Introduction (Excerpt)
This excerpt is an introduction to Facing Eviction, taking viewers inside the unfolding housing crisis during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Guantanamo Bay has become a symbol of the war on terror, but its story actually begins a decade before, when it was first used to detain thousands of Haitians outside the reach of U.S. law. This story was created in collaboration with NPR and PBS, FRONTLINE.
Combating the Myth of the Superpredator
In the 1990s, a handful of researchers inspired panic with a dire but flawed prediction: the imminent arrival of a new breed of “superpredators.”
Growing up Gygax - The Son of D&D's Creator
Dungeons and Dragons co-creator Gary Gygax’s son explains what life was like in a household where D&D took center stage.
New York Tenants Are Organizing Against Evictions, as They Did in the Great Depression
Activists concerned about pandemic-related homelessness are seeking rent relief. In the 1930s, tenants banded together against evictions.
Hillary Clinton and the Superpredator
Wondering what the Hillary Clinton/superpredator brouhaha is all about? Here’s the cliff notes…
Junot Díaz and the D&D Revolution
Why Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Junot Díaz says playing Dungeons and Dragons was a revolution.
Facing Eviction: Teresa (Excerpt)
Facing Eviction provides a rare and intimate look at U.S. housing policy during the Covid-19 pandemic in a way that hasn’t been seen before.
The Outrage Machine
In the digital age, where everyday people can suddenly become public enemy number one, how do we strike the balance between keeping free speech alive online and preventing a cyber mob from taking over?
How a Standoff with the Black Panthers Fueled the Rise of SWAT
S.W.A.T. teams, specially trained police teams, have been used increasingly in routine matters like serving drug warrants, sometimes with disastrous results.
Trump, Measles, and a Study That Fueled Fear
President Donald Trump has long been a critic of childhood vaccines – but then he suddenly changed course, urging parents to vaccinate their children.
How Decades of Housing Discrimination Hurts Fresno in the Pandemic
Decades of discrimination in Fresno laid the groundwork for a housing crisis today.
History is Repeating Itself
A law school professor is challenging Trump’s travel ban 25 years after he challenged the government as a student. For more, watch our collaboration with FRONTLINE, “Forever Prison.”
Facing Eviction: Landlords and Law Enforcement (Excerpt)
While Facing Eviction emphasizes the tenant’s experience, it also shows how complicated it is for almost everyone involved.
Since the summer of 2020, we’ve documented the impact of the pandemic on housing and evictions. We followed tenants, landlords, lawyers, judges, sheriffs and social workers across the U.S. who were affected.
Reproductive Rights and the Women Who Sparked a Movement
As the U.S. tightens restrictions on women’s reproductive health, the new season of The Handmaid’s Tale seems more relevant than ever. We look back on a group of women who broke sexual taboos in the 1970s, and how the fight over women’s bodies continues today.
Stealing J. Edgar Hoover's Secrets
Long before Edward Snowden, there was the greatest heist you’ve never heard of. On March 8, 1971, a group of eight Vietnam War protestors broke into a Federal Bureau of Investigation field office in Media, Pennsylvania and stole hundreds of government documents that shocked a nation.