Boomtown - Stories of a Changing Los Alamos

Boomtown founders Minesh Bacrania (L), Sam McRae, and Stephanie Nakhleh. Photo: Jane Mocko

Who we are

Stephanie Nakhleh and Minesh Bacrania started Boomtown in 2023 with the belief that Los Alamos County, in a time of great change, needs a source of independent, in-depth, and non-partisan journalism focused on that change. As residents of the county, our goal is to build a stronger and more connected community through comprehensive reporting and analysis of issues that affect our dynamic region.

Our values

We are entirely subscriber-supported, which ensures we are free from outside influence. We cover the issues of high interest and consequence to our community. We are committed to objective, factual reporting. We strive for fairness and accuracy and will correct any publication errors in a transparent and timely manner. We will be transparent about any conflicts of interest.

If you see a factual mistake in our stories, please let us know by e-mail at We do not accept opinion letters at this time.

Why “Boomtown?” 

Los Alamos National Laboratory, the dominant economic force in Northern New Mexico, has grown explosively in the last several years — a growth projected to continue into the near future. Consequently, Los Alamos County, whose population has remained relatively unchanged for decades, has become a true boomtown — a town with high affluence, high employment, scarce housing availability, and numerous barriers to growth. These rapid changes in our community demand a new kind of media project that deeply informs residents about what’s happening, and explores what’s next.

(Boomtown, of course, has another very Los Alamos meaning, too.)


Stephanie Nakhleh (

Raised in Los Alamos, Stephanie’s first reporter job was for the Los Alamos Monitor, covering police, business, county, and schools. Today, her writing often appears in the Santa Fe New Mexican, the Los Alamos Daily Post, and the Los Alamos Reporter. Stephanie has served on a variety of Los Alamos County Boards and Commissions but all views here are her own.

Minesh Bacrania (

Minesh has been exploring and photographing the human, cultural, and physical geography of New Mexico and the US Southwest for nearly a decade. His portraits and photo essays have been published in the New York Times, The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal, and Smithsonian Magazine. His work can be seen at

Sam McRae (

Sam moved from West Georgia to Los Alamos with her family in the summer of 2021. She is a writer who has worked in pharmacy, wellness, the service industry, hospitality, and is a former employee of the Los Alamos Chamber of Commerce. You can find more of her writing, where she shares her experience with faith and mental health, on her personal publication


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Just emotioning all over the place. Seminarian in the Episcopal Church. Creator of I Have Thoughts: a newsletter about why your brain isn't broken and neither is your faith. Member of the BoomTeam over at
Minesh Bacrania is a photographer in Northern New Mexico and a co-founder of Boomtown Los Alamos.
Stephanie is a journalist raised in Los Alamos with decades of experience writing for publications around northern New Mexico. Outside New Mexico, she has lived in Scotland, Switzerland, Philadelphia, and Boston.