Introducing the teams chosen for the second round of the Google Podcasts creator program

Lindsay Abrams
Jun 19 · 6 min read

We heard from thousands of eager podcasters in more than 100 countries. Here are the teams we selected for training.

This was not an easy decision to make.

In March, we put out our second call for applications to the Google Podcasts creator program. Aimed at supporting independent podcasters while lowering barriers to entry for underrepresented voices, the program provides intensive training and mentorship, as well as seed funding, for teams selected through our competitive process. We were blown away by the range of creative and compelling ideas we saw, and by the passion conveyed by many for not just producing a podcast, but for building a community through their work.

We were also heartened to hear from many people that the application itself helped early podcasters clarify their ideas and define their target listeners. Three of our selected teams made it to the finalist stage in Round One and came back with even stronger pitches. Of note, nearly a third of applications came from outside the United States. We hope this will spark the emergence of even more podcasts from global voices–and we can’t wait to hear them.

But right now, we’re excited to introduce you to the six teams we chose to receive up to $40,000 in funding and participate in our 20-week training program. Some of these podcasts are already out in the world, while others will take form in the coming months.

Join us in welcoming these teams to the PRX and Google Podcasts creator program family (in alphabetical order):

Bia Guimarães and Sarah Azoubel

Sarah Azoubel (Co-Creator, Host and Producer) is a Brazilian biology PhD turned science journalist and audio producer. Bia Guimarães (Co-Creator, Host and Producer) is a Brazilian journalist and audio producer with a master’s degree in Science and Cultural Communication.

Radhika Viswanathan and Samyuktha Varma

Samyuktha Varma (Producer and Host) is a writer and researcher with a longstanding interest in how challenging topics are communicated to broader audiences. Radhika Viswanathan (Producer and Host) is a development researcher and podcaster whose interests lie at the intersection of development research, policy, and communication. Both also co-produce and co-host the podcasts In the Field and Sea Change.

Michelle “MJ” James and Danielle “Dani” Brown

Michelle “MJ” James (Co-Host) has worked in media and entertainment for 20+ years. Diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015, she is now three years cancer-free. Danielle “Dani” Brown (Co-Host) is a 20+ year vet in media and entertainment as well.

Isabel Cadenas Cañón

Isabel Cadenas Cañón (Creator, Host and Producer) is an independent audio producer and writer. She’s published two books of poetry and one essay-length book and is a regular contributor to Spanish media.

Rhea Chedid and Afeef Nessouli

Rhea Chedid (Producer and Host) is the founder of a Beirut-based podcast production company. Her first podcast, Who Run the World, features inspiring interviews with female leaders. Afeef Nessouli (Producer and Host) is an American-Lebanese news producer and journalist.

Daniel Díaz, Miguel Reyes and Juan Serrano

Juan Serrano (Host and Lead Producer) is a Colombian lawyer, journalist and non-fiction book author. In 2018 he launched “La No Ficción,” a media project through which he started producing narrative-style podcasts. Miguel Reyes (Producer) is a Colombian lawyer, writer and producer. Daniel Díaz (Audio Designer) is a Colombian musician, copywriter and animal lover, and publicist at the Jorge Tadeo Lozano University in Bogotá.

Because we received an overwhelming number of strong applications, we’ve also invited three runners-up to join us for bootcamp week. They include: Copper & Heat, a James Beard Award-winning podcast out of Oakland, California that explores the unspoken rules and traditions of restaurant kitchens; FAXINA (“Cleanup”), a Portuguese-language podcast out of Boston, Massachusetts that will tell the stories of Brazilian house-cleaners in America; and Reid My Mind Radio from Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, which features profiles of compelling people impacted by blindness and disability (the creator lost his vision as an adult). We’re excited to work with Katy Osuna, Ricardo Osuna, Heloiza Barbosa, Fabia Oliveria, and Thomas Reid.

So, what’s next? The teams will be converging on the PRX Podcast Garage in late July for bootcamp, where they’ll get an immersive introduction to human centered-design and the mindsets that will guide their creation process. They’ll also go deep on podcasting with the PRX training team, guests from the industry, and our Advisory Committee. And they’ll get an opportunity to meet and learn from one another. We’d argue this the most important benefit of the program, particularly for teams who told us they don’t yet have a community of podcasters in their home countries. After that, we’ve asked them to prepare for 20 high-paced weeks dedicated to pushing their shows forward. We’re excited to see where they go from here!


Shaping the future of public media content, talent and technology.

Lindsay Abrams

Written by

Training Lead @PRX. Design Thinking + Media Innovation. @readingirl


Shaping the future of public media content, talent and technology.