About Ensemble Texas

On a mission to connect San Antonians to San Antonio.

Ensemble Texas is an independent publication launched in 2024 to promote environmental, economic, and cultural resiliency in San Antonio and throughout Texas.

Through all our content, we do this by:

1) Helping San Antonian's 'Find Out Where They Live.'

The more you know about something or someplace, the more you care for it. By helping San Antonians learn more about the city and state they live in, we believe the more invested and educated we'll all be in efforts to make things better.

2) Promoting Community Knowledge.

We seek to amplify our fellow community members' knowledge, expertise, and experience. Challenges and opportunities we face as a community might be addressed through better connectivity from within.

3) Finding What 'Works' Elsewhere.

We seek out what's working elsewhere in efforts to address the challenges and opportunities we face here at home.

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Your subscription makes this site possible and allows Ensemble Texas to continue to exist. Thank you!

About the Founders:

Cory Ames - Cory is a naturalist, writer, and storyteller. He is the Founder & CEO of Grow Ensemble, an indie media and education company exploring the art of living and working sustainably. He's the host of The Social Entrepreneurship & Innovation Podcast, where, since 2019, he's interviewed hundreds of leaders at the forefront of making business better.

Cory is a member of the Native Plant Society of Texas and is certified in Permaculture Design by the Permaculture Institute of North America.

Cory grew up in Washington State and has traveled through multiple countries, including Spain, Argentina, Mexico, Costa Rica, and Ecuador.

He lives with his wife, Annie, and their two sons in San Antonio, TX.

Ensemble Texas co-founders Cory Ames & Annie Bright

Annie Bright, J.D. - Annie Bright was born and raised in Corpus Christi, Texas. She studied political science at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and graduated with her BA in Comparative Politics. Annie returned to Texas to attend St. Mary’s University School of Law, where she graduated summa cum laude.

After law school, Annie received a Master of Arts in Law and Diplomacy at The Fletcher School of International Affairs at Tufts University. She studied International Law and Humanitarian Action while researching the financial journeys of refugees, migrants, and asylum seekers worldwide with the Leir Institute for Migration and Human Security.

Why We Started Ensemble Texas:

In 2019, Annie and I co-founded a blog, Grow Ensemble, through which we could explore the question: 

How can we leave the world a better place than we found it? 

This blog became a newsletter, YouTube channel, and podcast. And 250 interviews later, and hundreds of articles on all topics of sustainability written, it seems this inquiry resonated with others.

We built a community over these few years:

  • Amassing 125,000 total podcast listens
  • Over 105,000 YouTube Views
  • 5,000 engaged newsletter subscribers 
  • Over 2.1 million blog views
  • Our podcast grew to be among the top 1.5% of most popular podcasts in the world, competing with podcasts in every category. 

But in those 5 years and 250+ interviews with CEOs, Executive Directors, researchers, activists, and academics from all over the globe, we came back again and again in effect to one answer. 

“Find out where you live.” 

To better serve the world we live in, we must better understand the world we live in. 

And where do we live? San Antonio. 

To better serve San Antonio and secure a more sustainable, habitable, and prosperous future for ourselves and future generations, we must learn about San Antonio.

By learning about all that’s around us — the native plants, the animals, the people, the natural ebbs and flows to the way ecosystems and places operate and change and adapt…

We learn more, we understand more, we love more, and we act more

My focus have shifted from attempting to understand the world to instead understand the world that exists in my own city, my own backyard. 

I want to understand the people, the places, the past, the present, to not just to further love San Antonio but help myself and all of us as a community be better connected to why we love this city and the hopes we have for its future. 

Because that connection is more important now than it ever has been. 

San Antonio is at a moment of “ unprecedented and unstoppable growth,” to quote former Mayor Henry Cisneros from a conversation with Bob Rivard at SA Startup Week, in 2023

All the while being confronted with issues of climate change, record heat, record drought, concerning levels of inequality and threats of eroding affordability. 

The determinative factor in whether this context will be defined by our opportunity or our challenges for San Antonio over the next few decades is the engagement of our community in determining what that growth can or should look like.

And so: enter in Ensemble Texas. 

To do just that: help us as San Antonians learn, understand, love, and protect what makes this city and this region what it is. 

So that environmentally, economically, and culturally San Antonio, and thanks to San Antonio, Texas is more resilient 5, 10, 20 years from now than it is today. 

By making stories accessible, whether that’s an oral history of the native trees of San Antonio as we at the same time anticipate a world-renowned Arboretum breaking ground in the Southeastern corner of the city. 

Or, seeking to learn from our neighbors in Houston, who, by employing a housing first strategy, have cut their population of Houstonians experiencing homelessness by 28,000 in 10 years, all while saving money as a city in efforts to address this challenge.

We will promote and celebrate those who make San Antonio, San Antonio.

Ensemble Texas will be a reminder, a source of encouragement, that a more resilient Texas, is not only possible, but unstoppable. 

Local media is only more fragmented and diminished now than it was when I first moved to San Antonio.

And with another million residents anticipated by 2040, San Antonians must engage with thoughtful, inspiring, and empowering stories.

We're excited to invite you along this journey in both celebrating and connecting this city that we all love to call home for the sake of a more resilient and abundant future.

Let's build a better Texas, together.