There is so much good work to do in L.A. — and these 50 Angelenos are getting it done

The People Issue is about people, but it isn’t about just anyone. It’s about a certain type of person — those who, through adversity or with ingenuity or as a result of fate, get shit done.


The 50 Angelenos we chose for this issue inhabit different worlds: a high-end gallery and a downtown food bank, major Hollywood sets and a DIY punk venue, NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab and, at one point, a van that doubled as home. Each of them made the most of the world to which they belonged. Some created a whole new one.


For Glen Curado, the journey started with a traffic ticket (well, quite a few traffic tickets). Forced to do community service, he got an up-close look at the shoddy way in which food banks operate. So he turned the model on its head, revolutionizing the concept while reducing food waste and offering cheap, quality groceries to everyone.


Miry Whitehill’s mission began with a jumperoo, one she tracked down for a family of refugees with a restless infant. Within a few months, Whitehill was running an organization of her own creation that was delivering a lifeline to close to 100 refugee families from Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq and Syria.


When DJ Dahi started making beats, he was a dorm adviser — and worked on a track for an up-and-coming rapper named Kendrick Lamar. Dahi went on to produce five tracks on Lamar’s Damn., and he describes his work ethic in a way that any of our People Issue subjects might, whether they’re superstars or just starting out:


“You can’t let money cloud your creative process,” Dahi says. “If you’re passionate and love what you’re making, everything else takes care of itself.”


The people in this issue love what they’re making. And as a result, they’re making L.A. a better place. —Mara Shalhoup

Photography by

Danny Liao

The Gang Expert


Alex Alonso

The Farmer

Andrea Crawford

The Compton Superstar

Anthony Anderson

The Marijuana Maven

Bonita "Bo" Money

The Man Behind the Metal


Daniel Dismal

The Savant Chef

David Schlosser

Ale Cohen

The Internet Radio Guru

Andre Guerrero

The Godfather of Filipino Food

Buck Angel

The Inventor

Devon Randall

DJ Dahi

Elaina Luther

The Brewmaster

The Low-Key Hitmaker

The Probiotics Powerhouse

Rachel Bloom

The Born Curator

Eva Longoria

Full Metal Jackie

A Desperate Housewife No More

The Headbanger-in-Chief

Gere Kavanaugh

Glen Curado

The Pioneer

The Food Bank Maestro

Jacqueline Lyra

Jamillah James

The Martian

The Chinatown Revivalist

George Yu

The Parkour Punk

Gnarly Charly

The VR Phenom

Jenn Duong

Jim Smith

Karen Civil

Karen Tongson

The Smell Guy

The Hip-Hop Hype Woman

The Karaoke Lecturer


Kera Armendariz

The Frontwoman

Louis Virtel

The Contestant

Marnie The Dog

The Sassy Senior

The Unlikely Politician

Kevin de Leon

The Nature Lover

Lila Higgins

The Tuesday Night Clubbers

Henry Lu, Rami Perlman

and Ollie Zhang

The Sommelier

Maria Garcia

The Keyboardist

Melissa Reese

The Civil Rights Lawyer

Miguel Garcia

Miry Whitehill

Natalie Curie

Nathan Hazard

The Refugee Welcomer

The Ceviche Queen

The Cocktail Connoisseur


Pilar Tompkins Rivas

The Tastemaker

Rafa Esparza

The Brick Maker

Theotis Beasley

The Skateboarding Superstar

The Curbside Comedian

Olivia Haidar

The Desert Daze Dad

Phil Pirrone

The Musical Comedy Queen

Rachel Bloom

The Campus Food Revolutionary

Rachel Sumekh

The Bike Activist

Tafarai Bayne

The SpaceX Chef

Ted Cizma

Tom Morello

Vijay Gupta

Yesenia Mateo

The Prophet

The Orchestral Altruist

The New Activist