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Podcaster Ann Friedman Gets In Touch With Her Iowa Roots

Courtesy of Ann Friedman



Election analysis, friendship hacks, personal finance advice, social media gripes... And a list of Kamala Harris’ favorite snacks?

These are just a few of the topics you might hear discussed when you turn on an episode of the wildly popular podcast, “Call Your Girlfriend,” co-created and co-hosted by journalist and Dubuque-native, Ann Friedman, in the company of her long-distance best friend, Aminatou Sow.

Friedman, Sow, and producer Gina Delvac started the podcast five years ago as an outlet for the pair's witty banter on female friendships, government happenings, and pop culture. But Friedman never expected that the project would turn into a live touring series, a platform for interviews with guests including Hillary Clinton, Gloria Steinem, and Stacy Abrams, and a forthcoming book deal. But more than 200 episodes later, the podcast continues to grow.

“There needs to be more popular media featuring women’s conversations with each other about things that are not their relationships with men. And so really we just try to do that,” Friedman says. “We’re really tackling this idea of, what would it look like to give friendship its due? To really center it, and talk about it, in the way that we believe it deserves to be.”

Outside of podcasting, Friedman continues to grow as a freelance journalist, boasting regular bylines in the Los Angeles Times, New York Magazine, and The Cut. She prefers to focus her work on issues that may not get as much media play and never appologizes for bringing her own passions and observations into her published work.

But while she largely works from the coasts, Friedman maintains her roots in Iowa, working on a long-term photo and audio project profiling the small town of Columbus Junction with friend and photographer Lara Shipley, and heading home to spend time with family and sample her favorite hometown comfort foods.

“You can always lure me back with taco pizza,” Friedman says.


Katelyn Harrop is a producer for IPR's River to River and Talk of Iowa
Charity Nebbe is the host of IPR's Talk of Iowa