Tag Archives: Features

South Texas Feature | Black Women

Jefferson County’s Historic New Sheriff

Swept to victory amidst a dramatic election year, newly elected Sheriff Zena Stephens has taken the reins of a department of more than 400 people and a budget of $40 million in Southeast Texas, undeterred by a hate incident attacking her campaign office nearly a year ago. Texas Monthly sat down with the first black woman to hold the title of sheriff in the state (and one of only two currently elected in the country) to discuss her career, challenges in police-community relations, and her strategic vision for her new role.


She’s the Sheriff” (Texas Monthly | January 2017)

Additional Coverage

(Image Credit: Todd Spoth/Texas Monthly)


All-Texas Feature | Undocumented Migrants & Asylum-Seekers

The Growing Humanitarian Disaster of the Detention-Industrial Complex

Accounting for nearly a third of federally detained migrants and nearly half of detained asylum-seekers, the nearly two-dozen immigration detention centers that dot the Texas landscape have come under increasing scrutiny for human rights infringements, including indefinite detention, malnourishment, medical negligence, and legal counsel inaccessibility. Through the eyes of a detainee, The Texas Observer traces the human realities of an ever-expanding detention regime focused on mass incarceration over the humanitarian treatment of asylum-seekers. The first installment of its series on federal detention centers colors this sketch with data on the ballooning detention industrial complex, from the growth of for-profit incarceration to the exploding public budgets for detention administration.

‘Even the Birds and Animals Are Free’” (The Texas Observer | December 2016)
America Under Detention” (A Texas Observer series)

Detention Facility Locator (U.S. Immigration & Customs Enforcement)

(Image Credit: Jen Reel/The Texas Observer)