Our History

Many ideas have complicated, nonlinear beginnings. Here Lisa Rothman describes the thought process that led her to come up with the idea for Chew On This. 

“I was mulling over what sort of radio show to host as I was driving to a food truck pod to purchase food for my family.  I enjoy listening to advice shows like Car Talk and thought I might do one at food truck pods and showcase one of my own areas of expertise—giving people career advice.  I discussed this idea with Matt Martin, the general manager at KALW Radio, while I was walking in my neighborhood.  We agreed this idea was too limited in scope and he said, 'Think about what it is that you value about food truck pods.  The kind of show you want to produce will become evident to you when you figure that out.’

As I walked, I concluded that I’m drawn to food truck pods because each truck has a different specialty and by gathering together they offer something delicious for everybody.  This reminded me that more than a year before I’d realized that we’re all experts at something and I had wanted to listen to a radio show that would feature people whose area of expertise probably doesn’t have a graduate degree or credential associated with it.  I thought about how when I listen to TED Talks I always want a question and answer session at the end so I can ask, 'That’s really cool but how do I make your idea a reality in my life?' By the end of my walk, I knew the show would be about practical ways to make the world a better place.  We’d record it at food truck pods and the people who attended would be able to ask questions of the experts.”