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Josh Morsell

Josh Morsell (2015) is a writer and private investigator based in the San Francisco Bay Area. He grew up in the redwoods of Northern California, studied Art and Semiotics at Brown University, where he graduated with Honors. He also completed an MFA in literary nonfiction at the University of Minnesota, where he was awarded the 2009 Gesell Award for Excellence in Literary Nonfiction.

His book in progress is “The Redwood Summer Bomb Case: Judi Bari, Earth First! and the Fight for California’s Redwoods.” In May 1990, Judi Bari was leading a campaign to save California’s ancient redwoods when a bomb exploded beneath her car seat, crippling her. While Bari was in intensive care, the FBI accused her of planting the bomb herself, and she was arrested. Even after the case against her fell apart, the FBI maintained that she and her passenger were the only suspects – despite death threats she’d received before the explosion. Bari, a community organizer who bridged the labor and environmental movements, suspected the FBI of framing her. She sued, and in 2002 won a $4.4 million jury verdict. Morsell explores this unsolved bombing and the ways in which Bari’s rural community fractured when faced with the end of its timber industry.