Editorial Bios

Diablo Editorial Team

Katherine Ann Rowlands

Editor In Chief

Contact: krowlands@diablopubs.com

Kat was born and raised in Berkeley, inheriting from her parents a love of books, music, and art and an appreciation for adventurous travel, good cooking, and exploring nature. Starting with short stories and hand-made greeting cards as a child, she advanced to newspapers and magazines in high school and college, and pursued writing and editing as a career. She studied at Macalester College in Minnesota, London School of Economics, and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism in New York. Overseas journalism stints in London, The Hague, and Tegucigalpa rounded out newspaper editing jobs in the Bay Area and the Central Coast. In 2016-17, she was a John S. Knight Journalism Fellow at Stanford University, working on ways to get more women into news leadership roles and improve regional media coverage. When not Skyping with her two college-age kids in Canada or hiking around Tilden Park and Mount Diablo, she is wine tasting and shell hunting on the Central Coast.



Alejandra Saragoza

Managing Editor, Diablo

Covers: Food scene

Alejandra, also known as Ali, is an East Bay native and has been an avid reader and writer for as long as she can remember. When she was a child, she could often be found writing short stories and poems in her journal, and she had her first work published when she was 11 years old. She pursued her passions at UC Santa Barbara, where she studied communication and professional writing and editing—and enjoyed the social scene of Isla Vista. She also studied abroad in Madrid for a year, and while interning at an English-language magazine, she discovered a love for food writing. When she’s not out trying the latest restaurant, Alejandra can be found hiking with her Labrador, sipping a cocktail, watching a Warriors game, or baking cookies (and eating the cookie dough, of course).

Contact: asaragoza@diablopubs.com
Instagram: @asaragoza



Deanne O'Connor

Art Director

As a kid, Deanne sneaked looks at naked people in her mom’s National Geographics, and pondered her dad’s Sports Illustrated. Later, she looked forward to first, Seventeen magazine’s monthly arrival, then Rolling Stone—which Deanne spent hours with as a teen.

 As an adult she found her way into publishing and fell in love. That love brought her across the country and eventually to Diablo. Deanne’s addicted to the feeling of “yes, that’s it!” that comes when you hit upon a great creative idea.

When not at Diablo, you’ll find her making stuff in her garage, or sitting on her Benicia patio watching the boats go by on the Carquinez Strait.

Contact: doconnor@diablopubs.com
Instagram: @deanneonfire
Twitter: @deanneonfire


Lauren Bonney

Assistant Editor

If you asked Lauren at five-years-old what she wanted to be when she grew up she would have said “A veterinarian!” Every Saturday morning she would be glued to the TV watching Animal Planet, mouth agape, absorbing everything from Mutual of Omaha’s Wild Kingdom to The Crocodile Hunter until she was unwillingly dragged away. So, it was much to her parents’ surprise when Lauren fell in love with writing and storytelling after a creative writing assignment in the seventh grade, and decided she wanted to be a writer. She majored in English and History from Santa Clara University and is a staunch lover of the Bay Area, where she was born and raised. You can find her cheering on the Giants with a beer in hand, indulging in a cheese plate, and eagerly planning her next adventure.

Fun fact: Kangaroos are born roughly the size of a jellybean.


Casey Cantrell

News Editor, Diablo; Managing Editor, Napa Sonoma

Growing up reading Goosebumps and watching Star Trek: The Next Generation, Casey is a nerd through and through. He pursued his nerdy passions at school, eventually earning a Bachelor’s and a Master’s degree in English, before landing a dream job at Diablo. An avid news junkie, Casey is willing to debate anything and everything into the ground. When he’s not at work and/or watching Star Trek, he is probably watching Star Wars or pontificating about the latest political news.

Contact: ccantrell@dcpmail.com



Peter Crooks

Senior Editor/Senior Writer

Covers: Arts and entertainment, personality profiles, news, and service

Peter returned to his hometown of Lafayette and began working at Diablo magazine in 1998, after spending most of the '90s as a scuba-diving, movie-watching, library-frequenting vagabond, living in Micronesia, Australia, and the Grand Canyon National Park. In addition to his love of all things East Bay, Pete is a major film buff—his movie blog, Pete's Popcorn Picks, can be found at diablomag.com, and he has contributed weekly reviews for radio programs on KFRC, KNBR, and 107.7 The Bone. He has written stories for the Arizona Daily Sun, Via magazine, Athletics magazine, and Theowlmag.com, and appeared as an expert tipster on the television programs Bay Area Backroads and Eye on the Bay.

Contact: pcrooks@maildiablo.com

Twitter: @popcornpicks


Nicholas Boer

Senior Food Writer

Covers: Food and drink

Nicholas discovered Hamburger Helper as a kid, putting him on track to sous chef positions at The Restaurant at Wente Vineyards and Postino (formerly Tourelle) in Lafayette. In Kauai he was executive chef at Plantation Gardens and a cook at The Masters under three star Michelin chef Louis Outhier. Nicholas has also been an executive chef in Sausalito, San Francisco, and Corte Madera. When he got weary of burns and stitches he became a journalist and has been a food writer in the East Bay ever since. He now spends his time bicycle riding in an ever-losing battle to expend more calories than he takes in.

Contact: nboer@diablopubs.com


Clay Kallam

Diablo Dish columnist

Clay has lived in Contra Costa County since Orinda had more ranches than Range Rovers, and what  excitement there was in Walnut Creek was cruisin’ the Main. Fine dining? Pizza at Pinky’s and Freddie’s, and breakfast at Millie’s – plus the occasional dinner at the Casa O and good old-fashioned American Mexican food at El Charro.

Now, however, Clay gets to experience the best in modern California cuisine as the Diablo Dish columnist, and as he’s been to too many restaurants over the years, it’s a perfect fit. Susan Safipour is quick to point out writing Diablo Dish is the best job in the East Bay, and he’s ready to dig in, figuratively and literally, to the task at hand.

Contact: dish@maildiablo.com
Twitter: @DiabloDish


Edit ModuleShow Tags

Get on the A-List!

Sign up to get our e-newsletter and receive exclusive invites to special events, parties, and happenings.

Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags