A Team Grows in Brooklyn

I want to introduce a few new members of the growing Oil Men team. The two main members are Brad DeCecco and Ashley Panzera, who will be coming out to North Dakota for a couple weeks to help me cover what’s going on there. But there are a few others who have signed up to help. Here’s the whole crew:

Photographer/videographer: Brad DeCecco
Brad has been part of the project since the beginning and was the first person I told about my crazy idea to live in North Dakota to cover the oil boom. He also helped introduce me to the incredible FairStreet team who led our crowdfunding effort. Brad is one of the most talented photographers I know and has a whole host of awards and clients: he was awarded the PDN 30 Best Emerging Photographers for 2007 and the Jury Prize for Cinematography in the Communication Arts 2007, and he’s photographed for places like the Smithsonian, Washington Post Magazine, TIME, and Popular Mechanics. He’s also currently working on a documentary film about asbestos and has an upcoming photo book about the legal brothels in Nevada (check out a few of the photos here).

Documentary filmmaker: Ashley Panzera
I met Ashley when she answered a craigslist ad about an open room in my apartment and we never looked back. We spent our year living together sunbathing on the roof, shooting random documentaries (she and Brad did the shooting, I just starred in them – evidence here), and having endless chats about life and gender issues over wine. She’s is always finding interesting stories and documentaries to pursue. She’s worked on the film (A)sexuality: The Making of A Movement, which screened internationally, Pushing The Elephant (premiered at Human Rights Watch), and she’s now working on her directorial debut called Noise Runs about a radical newspaper in Haiti.

Research assistant: Catt Meyer
Catt will be helping me with research this summer as we dig into subjects like U.S. energy and oil production, fracking, and North Dakota politics. She currently lives in Lamar, Colorado, and recently graduated from the University of Northern Colorado last May with degrees in both mass communications and environmental and sustainability studies. She’s been a research assistant in a biology lab and an intern at the Colorado Springs Independent.

Editor: Bill Buck
Bill is my extremely cool cousin who’s also a writer and currently working on not one, but two books. The first is called Finding the Real City: A Guide to San Francisco that helps visitors and newbies find hidden gems in the city, and the second is a guide that explores America’s National Trails (there are so many more than the Appalachian and the PCT!). He’ll be heading out to North Dakota with me to help with the project and have a quiet (albeit cramped) space to work on his own books.

Drivers: Carolyn and Greg Briody
You might notice that I share a last name with these people, and that’s because they’re my parents (see the last post – they’ll be driving me out to North Dakota and pulling the trailer). They’re pretty awesome, and I’m excited they’re going on this adventure with me for a couple weeks. Both are retired teachers, and I credit them for my love of adventure and travel. Growing up, we traversed all over the world as a family, and they never cease to amaze me with their energy and up-for-anything spirit.

Assistant photographer: Will Christiansen
Will is not only a talented photographer (check out my author photo), but one of my best friends. I’ve known him since 6th grade, and we moved to New York together from California when we were 22 and spent lots of time eating pizza and watching NYC-themed shows and dreaming big. He’s now a successful video game animator in Seattle, working for 343 Industries on games like Halo. He’ll be taking off a week of work this summer to help take photos and video.

I’m lucky to have such a great crew and you’ll get to hear more from them once we’re in North Dakota. This is basically us:


One thought on “A Team Grows in Brooklyn

  1. Hi Blaire I was glad to read that Bill Buck will be there with you, because it sounds like a rough and wild place.
    your uncle Kent

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