Ben de la Cruz
Ben de la Cruz is an award-winning documentary video producer and multimedia journalist. He is currently a senior visuals editor. In addition to overseeing the multimedia coverage of NPR's global health and development, his responsibilities include working on news products for emerging platforms including Amazon's and Google's smart screens. He is also part of a team developing a new way of thinking about how NPR can collaborate and engage with our audience as well as photographers, filmmakers, illustrators, animators, and graphic designers to build new visual storytelling avenues on NPR's website, social media platforms, and through live events.
De la Cruz joined NPR as the multimedia editor for the Science Desk in June 2012. In this role, he served as the visual architect for NPR's coverage of health, science, environment, energy, food, and agriculture.
De la Cruz began his career as a multimedia journalist at washingtonpost.com in January 2000. During his 12-year career there, he helped create the newspaper industry's groundbreaking multimedia site, Camera Works. Along the way, he managed the dozen-person multimedia and documentary video departments, overseeing feature and news reporting.
While at washingtonpost.com, de la Cruz's series of 12 profiles about racial identity for the Being a Black Man project won the prestigious George Foster Peabody Award. The award marked the first time a newspaper won what is widely considered to be the Pulitzer Prize of broadcast journalism. In 2014, de la Cruz was part of the NPR team that won a Peabody Award and a World Press Award for its coverage of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.
His reporting on the multimedia project Under Suspicion: Voices About Muslims In America has been recognized with a National Edward R. Murrow Award. He has also received three Emmy Award nominations for his work on Top Secret America (2010), Living with PTSD (2007), and Being A Black Man (2006).
Prior to joining The Washington Post, de la Cruz worked as an independent producer for public television, a print reporter covering the Internet industry, and a freelance photography reviewer for Photo District News magazine. He has also co-produced and written songs released by Sony Music, Dischord, and DCide Records.
De la Cruz is also a sought-after speaker and has won numerous awards for his documentary video editing and cinematography from The National Press Photographers' Association, The White House News Photographers' Association, Pictures of the Year International, and the Webbys, to name a few.
Some of his favorite NPR projects include "They Are The Body Collectors: A Perilous Job In The Time Of Ebola," "The Milkshake Experiment," "Hot Pot: A Dish, A Memory," "Exploring The Invisible Universe That Lives On Us — And In Us," "Dropping Science," "The Refugees Who Don't Want To Go Home ... Yet," and "Life After Death."
Born in Manila, de la Cruz grew up in Baltimore and now lives with his son and wife in Washington, DC.
From the first vaccine (for smallpox) the questions have been the same. How do we transport it? Who's next to get it? Why so much hesitancy? The answers can be similar — or dramatically different.
A virus first identified in December has altered daily life and public spaces around the globe. These images capture scenes from this unnerving era.
Greg Constantine has spent 10 years documenting the world's stateless people. They live without passports, without ID cards, without dignity — but not without hope.
A former aid worker turned his photography hobby into a career after taking pictures of patients in the tuberculosis wards at hospitals in the former Soviet Union. His award-winning photos show inequities in treatment and also glimpses of hope.
Evidence of loss remains even three years after a massive earthquake claimed the lives of as many as 200,000 people in Haiti. One of the first photojournalists to capture the grim aftermath of the quake, NPR's David Gilkey traveled back to Haiti to revisit images he originally took in 2010.
Global deaths from malaria have dropped sharply in the past decade, thanks in part to powerful drugs called artemisinins. But on the border between Thailand and Myanmar, doctors are starting to see cracks in artemisinin's armor. The medicine is working more slowly, and sometimes not at all.
Photographer David Binder has been telling the stories of people with AIDS for 25 years. Binder's photographs of Gail Farrow, who contracted AIDS from a blood transfusion, and her family shattered prevailing perceptions of the epidemic. His documentary on her struggle was screened this week in Washington.