Jose Jesus Zaragoza was born in a border town in Texas into a family of hard-working migrant farmworkers. He has carried the valuable lessons of his upbringing into his career endeavors.
He has strong ties to the Glades communities where he worked as the publisher of three newspapers and as a communications director for a local nonprofit serving low-income residents. He brings that experience to study the impact of agriculture on the Glades’ way of life through questions of culture, the economy, the environment, and race.
As an artist, Jose has honed his artistic vision through documentary photography, writing, and filmmaking, and has creatively captured stories through his lens and writing since 1999.
His achievements include being awarded the Knight Heroes Grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation in 2022 in furtherance of his documentary filmmaking; along with grants from The Redford Center, the Economic Hardship Reporting Project, and many more.