“The Kitchen Sisters have done some of the best radio stories ever broadcast.” – Ira Glass

The Kitchen Sisters (Davia Nelson & Nikki Silva) are producers of the James Beard and duPont-Columbia Award-winning NPR series Hidden Kitchens, and two Peabody Award-winning NPR series, Lost & Found Sound and The Sonic Memorial Project. As independent producers, The Kitchen Sisters have created hundreds of stories for NPR and public broadcast about the lives, histories, art and rituals of people from all walks of life who have shaped our diverse cultural heritage.

Their latest series for NPR’s Morning Edition is The Keepers—stories of activist archivists, rogue librarians, collectors, curators, historians—keepers of the culture and the culture and collections they keep.

Their podcast The Kitchen Sister Present… was awarded the 2017 Webby Award for Best Documentary Podcast and their most recent season of Hidden Kitchens: Kimchi Diplomacy: War and Peace and Food was given a 2017 James Beard Award.

Their series Hidden Kitchens heard on Morning Edition, explores the world of secret, unexpected, below the radar cooking across America—how communities come together through food. The series has won two James Beard Awards and inspired their first book, Hidden Kitchens: Stories, Recipes, and More from NPR’s The Kitchen Sisters, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year. Other work includes the radio special Hidden Kitchens Texas, narrated by Willie Nelson, which was nominated for a James Beard Award and the inspiration for their book, Hidden Kitchens Texas: Stories, Recipes and More from the Lone Star State.

Additional projects on NPR include The Hidden World of Girls, a series exploring the lives of girls and the women they become and an hour long special hosted by award-winning actress and writer, Tina Fey. The Lost & Found Sound series chronicles American life through recorded sound. In 2001-2002 The Kitchen Sisters created and spearheaded The Sonic Memorial Project, a collection of radio stories and audio artifacts, and a Peabody Award-winning website and archive (www.sonicmemorial.org) commemorating the life and history of the World Trade Center and its neighborhood. This nationwide cross-media collaboration was awarded the Archivists Round Table of Metropolitan New York Award for most innovative use of archives and the NFCB Golden Reel for Best Hour-Long Radio Documentary.

Their podcast, The Kitchen Sisters Present, explores lost recordings, shards of sound along with new tales of remarkable people from around the world —stories from the flip side of history. It is part of PRX’s Radiotopia, a network of story driven shows including 99% Invisible, The Truth, Strangers, Love and Radio, Radio Diaries and Theory of Everything.

The Kitchen Sisters’ radio documentaries have been featured on NPR, the BBC, the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, Australian Broadcasting Corporation, Radio Smithsonian, and many others.

The Kitchen Sisters are also involved in educating and training new voices for public media in an imaginative, artistic approach to storytelling. They have taught at UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism, University of California Santa Cruz Social Documentary Graduate Program and frequently lecture and provide training at universities, festivals, workshops, radio stations, public forums and events throughout the country and abroad. They also train and work with interns, college students, and youth radio apprentices and participate in the life of the public radio community throughout the country.

In addition to producing radio, Davia Nelson has been a casting director and screenwriter and does live interviews onstage for the Telluride Film Festival, City Arts and Lectures, the JCCSF and many other organizations. She lives in San Francisco. Nikki Silva is also a museum curator and exhibit consultant. She lives with her family on a commune in Santa Cruz.

Nathan Dalton, Producer, began working with the Sisters in 2006. He is The Kitchen Sisters’ web master, multimedia/video guru and go-to music guy. He spent much of his youth touring the country and playing music with a variety of bands, but these days can usually be found haunting the farmer’s markets and shuffling through the library stacks of Berkeley, CA, where he lives with his beautiful family.
Jim McKee, our kitchen brother, has been our sound designer and engineer for Lost & Found Sound, The Sonic Memorial Project, Hidden Kitchens, Hidden World of Girls and beyond. He is co-founder of Earwax Productions voted best sound design team in San Francisco.
Laura Folger, Associate Producer and Designer (Emeritus), began working with The Kitchen Sisters in 1999 at the beginning of Lost & Found Sound. As a longtime friend, she jumped on board to help launch the series and never looked back. She collaborates as a photographer and graphic designer for The Kitchen Sisters visual materials and online sites.


Board of Directors:
Mara Brazer
Claudia Ceniceros
Marc Hand
Cristina Hudson
Richard Hylton
Ellen Lewis
Frederic Marienthal
Davia Nelson
Nikki Silva
Marlene Saritzky
Carolyn Zecca-Ferris

The Kitchen Cabinet:
Jay Allison
Paul Auster
Joe Boyd
Eleanor Coppola
Andrei Codrescu
Mark Danner
Robert Fisher
Susie Franklin
Angelo Garro
Sandra Wong Geroux
David Giovannoni
Peter Guralnick
David Isay
Phil Kaufman
Cindi King
Robert Krulwich
Tom Luddy
Michael Ondaatje
Anne Pasternak
Bonnie Raitt
Joshua Robison
Ellen Sebastian Chang
Susan Sillins
Chris Strachwitz
Michael Tilson Thomas
Alice Waters
Barbara Wollner
Howard Wollner


Contact us:
The Kitchen Sisters
916 Kearny
San Francisco, CA 94133
kitchen [at] kitchensisters [dot] org

Twitter: @kitchensisters
Instagram: @kitchensisters
Facebook:  @kitchensisters