Fred de Sam Lazaro is director of the Under-Told Stories Project at the University of St. Thomas in Minnesota, a program that combines international journalism and teaching. He has served with the PBS NewsHour since 1985 and is a regular contributor and substitute anchor for PBS' Religion and Ethics Newsweekly.
He also has directed films from India and the Democratic Republic of Congo for the documentary series Wide Angle. Fred has reported from more than 60 countries: from Haiti to sub-Saharan Africa to south Asia. He has focused on stories that are under-reported in the mainstream U.S. media. In addition to regularly covering AIDS, public health concerns, development issues and social entrepreneurship, he led the first American crew to report on the crisis in Sudan's Darfur region.
Fred is the recipient of two honorary doctorates, numerous journalism awards and media fellowships from the Kaiser Family Foundation and the University of Michigan. He serves on the board of Minnpost and was a trustee at the College of St. Scholastica in Duluth, Minnesota, his alma mater. He also has served on the boards of the Asian American Journalists Association and the Children's Law Center of Minnesota.
Fred’s Recent Stories
World Oct 26Pakistan’s polio health workers make inroads toward eradication
Polio remains prevalent across Pakistan, one of only three countries in the world where the crippling viral disease is endemic. A campaign to dispense vaccinations have helped relieve the crisis, but threats of violence and misinformation from the Taliban are…
World Apr 17This innovator is trying to make sanitary pads affordable for women in India
Arunachalam Murugananthan is known as India's pad man. Breaking a strict taboo in India's tradition-bound society, Murugananthan worked to perfect an affordable sanitary pad in hope of starting a movement to help women in the developing world. Special correspondent Sam…
World Aug 18Column: How my reporting trip to Ethiopia came to an abrupt end
We came to Ethiopia to report on the country’s response to a historic drought. We left with a very different story and a taste of how hard it is for journalists, even those on what should have been a mostly…
World Sep 16Doctor slashes the cost of surgeries for India’s poor
To keep costs of heart surgeries low for poor populations in India, Narayana Health took a partnership approach.
Nation Aug 07My story as an Indian immigrant
Forty years ago, I arrived in America with none of the social bona fides, the pedigree that comes from T-ball, Boy Scouts, junior prom or graduating from the local high school.
World Apr 24Human rights activist Sabeen Mahmud shot dead in Karachi
Sabeen Mahmud was a human rights activist owner of a coffee shop and performance space in Karachi, Pakistan, designed to bring people together. On Friday, Mahmud, 40, was fatally gunned down as she left T2F (The Second Floor) following an…
Nation Oct 30Food truck church brings faith and calzones to those in need
Every Thursday, the Rev. Margaret Kelly and a group of volunteers gather in the basement of St. Paul’s Gustavus Adolphus Church to roll out hundreds of meat- and cheese-filled calzones, to be loaded and baked in her food truck and…
World Sep 22Reporter’s Notebook: Covering Ebola in Nigeria while navigating corruption
The story of Ebola in Nigeria is an unusual and frankly rare one about things going right somewhere in Africa, albeit with fingers crossed for fear that it could quickly change. The numbers are remarkable: just 21 cases of Ebola…
World Jul 03Uneasy alliance in Bangladesh reveals complex social issues
A partnership with multinational corporations in Bangladesh reveals the complex social issues that underlie poverty and compromises anti-poverty activists must make to achieve growth and self-sustainability.
World Apr 09Questions linger a year after Bangladesh’s garment factory collapse
On the afternoon of April 23, 2013, workers at the Rana Plaza offices of BRAC Bank were concerned about recent cracks that had appeared in the walls of the building. Their manager ordered tellers to complete transactions they were working…