Fifth & Mission

The flagship news podcast of the San Francisco Chronicle. Producer/host Cecilia Lei and co-host Laura Wenus discuss the biggest stories of the day with Chronicle journalists and newsmakers from around the Bay Area. | Get full digital access to the Chronicle:

Fifth Woman Accuses Dominic Foppoli
An ex-girlfriend says she was sexually assaulted by the Windsor mayor. Meanwhile, some residents of the town are launching a recall bid. Foppoli released a statement denying the allegations and attacking lawmakers who have called for his resignation
12 min
Wine Country Mayor Faces Criminal Investigation
Hours after The Chronicle published an investigation into Windsor Mayor Dominic Foppoli, the Sonoma County Sheriff's Office opened a criminal probe
11 min
"Prince" of Wine Country Accused of Sexual Assault
Four women have told The Chronicle that vintner and Windsor Mayor Dominic Foppoli isolated and assaulted them after nights of drinking between 2003 and 2019. Foppoli denies the allegations. Content warning: Sexual assault.
26 min
Reopening: The End Is Near
With vaccinations growing, Gov. Newsom delivered staggering news on Tuesday: California plans to lift most pandemic restrictions and fully reopen on June 15. Unless something changes, that means the end of the color-coded tier system for counties. Reporters Erin Allday and Aidin Vaziri discuss what this means for schools, for events like concerts and for mask-wearing — and whether there's still a chance of a backslide.
14 min
If beloved Blowfish Sushi closed in December, how can people still order sushi from a restaurant of the same name in the same space? Reporter Janelle Bitker has been following this fishy story.
19 min
Stanford's Professor of Women's Basketball
The Cardinal's NCAA title adds to the remarkable legacy of coach Tara VanDerveer. Her team is the most consistently successful in Bay Area sports, but this was their first title in 29 years.
10 min
How Much Longer Will We Have to Wear Masks?
There are few more obvious tokens of the pandemic than the masks covering everyone’s faces. But despite the rising number of vaccination rates, Californians shouldn’t expect to tear them off any time soon. Health writer Erin Allday joins to explain why.
15 min
We're Here. We're Queer. We're in Power
Have we entered a new era for LGBTQ politicians? Reporter Tony Bravo talks about the groundbreaking rise of gay and transgender leaders. Plus: Rachel Swan breaks down the tension over the response to anti-Asian crimes.
18 min
50-64: You're Vaccine Eligible! But ...
But there aren’t enough shots. Reporters Catherine Ho and Nanette Asimov discuss what the Bay Area can expect as eligibility opens for those 50 and over. Plus: Alexei Koseff talks about help for the region's poorest residents to get vaccinated.
16 min
Polling on Recall is Good News for Newsom
A new poll shows opponents of California Gov Gavin Newsom have a lot of work to do. A strong 56% of likely voters oppose the recall, compared to 40% backing it. Meanwhile, Newsom’s job approval rating among likely voters is 53%, virtually unchanged from the before the pandemic that ignited anger against him. The Chronicle's Joe Garofoli explains the numbers, how the pandemic is at the center of recall momentum, and how leading Democrats aren't likely to run to replace Newsom.
16 min
Vaccine FOMO Is Real
People are posting inoculation selfies and beginning to restart their lives. But what about those who haven't yet got their shots? Reporter Ryan Kost on Fear of Missing Out. Plus: Erin Allday on fears of a fourth surge of the pandemic.
18 min
SF New Deal: Helping Restaurants Survive
Lenore Estrada's Three Babes Bakeshop lost its customer base when the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Her efforts to distribute leftover pies led to her co-founding SF New Deal, which has paid 184 restaurants to provide 1.83 million meals to the hungry.
26 min
Vaccinations for All Adults Almost Here
Starting April 1, all Californians 50 and older will be eligible for a shot, and anyone 16 and older will qualify on April 15. Health reporters Catherine Ho and Erin Allday talk about the big news, and new concern about the P.1 variant of the coronavirus.
14 min
San Francisco's Decimated Downtown
There's enough office space for lease in the city to fill 11 Salesforce Towers. Can it be turned into housing? Chronicle reporter Roland Li explains why that's a lot harder than it sounds -- and also gives some alarming statistics on plunging San Francisco tourism dollars.
19 min
Oakland's Experiment: Paying a Guaranteed Income
Oakland will launch one of the country's biggest guaranteed income programs this spring. The idea is to give 600 residents -- all of them low-income parents of color -- a monthly payment of $500 a month for at least 18 months with no strings attached. Chronicle reporter Sarah Ravani talks about why the idea is spreading, and how supporters are looking for proof that basic income can boost people’s health and increase racial and gender equity.
13 min
Racist Tweets are Latest Crisis for S.F. Schools
Education reporter Jill Tucker discusses the tweets attacking Asian Americans that have prompted broad calls for the resignation of San Francisco school board member Alison Collins.
17 min
What Will Yosemite Look Like This Summer?
The stunning scenery is a given, but pretty much everything else about California's beloved national park remains up in the air. Park officials are still deciding whether to cap daily visitors due to the coronavirus or allow everybody in at once. Chronicle reporter Kurtis Alexander previews what to expect on a visit.
12 min
Orange Tier, Here We Come
It's happening: The Bay Area is moving toward post-pandemic life. And while virus variants are coming our way, the news looks good so far as vaccinations grow. Reporters Trisha Thadani and Erin Allday talk about what's about to open up.
19 min
Anti-Asian Hate: How the Media Can Do Better
As the nation reels from the Atlanta mass shooting, Vox’s Cecilia Lei, an Asian American Journalists Association president, speaks with Heather Knight about how the rise in anti-Asian attacks has affected her and her family, and about how journalists and news organizations can better cover this type of violence.
18 min
Out of Prison, Right Into COVID Lockdown
Jeremy Puckett was exonerated after spending 19 years behind bars for a murder he didn't commit. But he had to trade one kind of lockdown for another: He was freed just as coronavirus shelter-in-place orders came down.
16 min
Kevin Fagan on Hunting The Doodler
He's covered the Zodiac, the Unabomber and others. Now, Fagan turns his attention to a forgotten serial killer who preyed on San Francisco's gay community in the '70s for The Chronicle's new true-crime miniseries, The Doodler.
16 min
A Year of Shelter-in-Place
Health reporter Erin Allday joins hosts Heather Knight and Demian Bulwa to talk about life in the coronavirus pandemic one year after the Bay Area's shutdown order. We hear from listeners, medical workers and former Fifth & Mission host Audrey Cooper.
27 min
A Critical Care Doctor's Pandemic Year
Dr. Maya Kotas of UCSF talked to Fifth & Mission from New York last May when she was volunteering to help at the epicenter of COVID-19. Now, she talks again to the Chronicle's Sarah Feldberg about the last heartbreaking year.
21 min
Why San Francisco's Parklets Should be Permanent
Supervisor Ahsha Safai is backing Mayor London Breed's legislation to let those makeshift structures in parking spaces remain forever as a way to boost struggling small businesses. He also discusses his idea to remake the school board and why the city should purchase more hotels for homeless people.
25 min
Will the Bay Area See One More Coronavirus Surge?
As society reopens and vaccinations spread, COVID-19 is on the run. But as Chronicle reporter Annie Vainshtein reports, health experts say the Bay Area may see a fourth pandemic surge — thanks to more contagious variants, the relaxing of rules and spring break. Also, sports writer Ron Kroichick talks about fans returning to Giants and A's games, and whether that's a good idea.
18 min