The Sum of Us

Orlando, FL: The land of second chances

Republican Congressional aide Neil Volz was convicted for conspiring to bribe members of Congress. Desmond Meade was a Black military veteran who fell into addiction, homelessness and prison. As people with a felony record, they were both stripped of their vote in the state of Florida. A chance encounter led to Desmond recruiting Neil, a white conservative, to join his audacious campaign to overturn the Jim Crow era felony voting ban. Their shared belief in second chances formed the basis of an unlikely friendship–and that friendship was one of the secret weapons in a broad multiracial, cross-partisan coalition that unleashed one of largest expansions of voting rights in US history. 


CREDITS: Host and Creator: Heather McGhee Original Music and Theme Song by: Thee Sacred Souls

Producers: Cassim Shepard, Ryan Kailath, Emilce Quiroz, Joaquin Cotler and Juan Diego Ramirez, with help from Liliana Ruiz, Sophia Lo, Susanna Kemp and Alissa Vladimir Senior Producers: Nicole Rothwell, Jeanne Montalvo, and Fernanda Echavarri Editors: Sandy Rattley and Maria Garcia Mix Engineers: Stephanie Lebow and Julia Caruso Researchers: Lynn Kanter and Carolyn Lipka Executive Producer for Futuro Studios: Marlon Bishop Executive producers for Higher Ground: Mukta Mohan, Dan Fierman, Anna Holmes, and Janae Marable Editorial assistant for Higher Ground: Jenna Levin Executive producers for Spotify: Daniel Ek, Dawn Ostroff, Julie McNamara and Corinne Gilliard

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