There are many ways to get involved in the INN community advancing nonprofit news! INN is grateful to our directors and members and to the journalism and philanthropy leaders who contribute their expertise to shape and guide INN programs and best practices for the nonprofit news field.
Below are advisers to INN who are helping us advance nonprofit news and the excellent and inclusive journalism produced by this emerging news media field.
Interested in getting involved? Email Sue Cross, executive director and CEO, at firstname.lastname@example.org, or directly reach any of the staff liaisons listed below. Advisory groups generally form around specific programs or projects to advise INN’s program directors; some are permanent and others may vary in duration. Task forces are generally ongoing organizations that advise the INN board as well as staff.
Carroll Bogert, president, The Marshall Project
Carroll is president of The Marshall Project, a nonprofit media organization covering criminal justice that has twice been awarded the Pulitzer Prize. Previously, she was deputy executive director at Human Rights Watch, running its award-winning global media operations. Before joining Human Rights Watch in 1998, Carroll spent 12 years as a foreign correspondent for Newsweek in China, Southeast Asia, and the Soviet Union.
Laura Frank, executive director, Colorado News Collaborative
Laura pioneered collaborative journalism in Colorado as the founder of I-News, the nonprofit investigative news organization that merged with Rocky Mountain Public Media in 2013, the first such merger in the nation. She led the journalism team there for seven years, and now leads COLab, the Colorado News Collaborative, advancing civic journalism through collaboration, engagement and business innovation. She is a Denver native who spent 20 years reporting for newspapers, radio and public television around the country, specializing in investigative reporting and data analysis. She was a founding member of the Institute for Nonprofit News and now serves as its board chair. Her work has won awards in both broadcast and print, and led to changes in laws and lives.
Andy Hall, executive director, Wisconsin Watch
Andy, a co-founder of the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism and a former Investigative Reporters and Editors board member, won dozens of awards for his reporting in 26 years at the Wisconsin State Journal and The Arizona Republic. Since the Center’s launch in 2009, he has been responsible for the Center’s journalistic and financial operations. At The Republic, Hall helped break the “Keating Five” scandal involving Sen. John McCain. At the State Journal, Hall’s stories held the government and the powerful accountable and protected the vulnerable through coverage that addressed the racial achievement gap in public schools. Hall has served as a mentor to the staff of La Comunidad, a Spanish-language newspaper in Madison, and has taught numerous courses at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Journalism & Mass Communication. He serves on the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council, Iowa Center for Public Affairs Journalism board of directors, Arnolt Center for Investigative Journalism at Indiana University advisory board, and Indiana University Media School Alumni Board.
Lorie Hearn, CEO, editor and founder, inewsource
Lorie is the chief executive officer and editor of inewsource, an investigative reporting nonprofit based in San Diego, CA. She is a lifelong news-aholic who started her reporting career writing her GirlScout troop’s newsletter at age 12. High school and college were filled with school newspaper work, and after graduation, she worked as a reporter for newspapers on both coasts. At The San Diego Union-Tribune, when she relinquished her front seat on the world as a reporter, she became an assistant editor, then Metro Editor and finally Senior Editor for Metro and Watchdog Journalism. Her staff was part of the newspaper’s 2006 Pulitzer Prize for national reporting. She left the U-T in 2009 to start inewsource, which is recognized nationally and locally for quality and impact. Lorie was a Nieman Foundation Fellow at Harvard in 1994-95.
Brant Houston, Knight Chair professor of investigative reporting at the College of Media, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, INN board director emeritus
Brant holds the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation Chair in Investigative and Enterprise Reporting at the University of Illinois. Houston teaches investigative and advanced reporting in the Department of Journalism in the College of Media at Illinois. He also oversees the online newsroom at Illinois, CU-CitizenAccess.org, which serves as a lab for digital innovation and data journalism. Houston became the chair in 2007 after serving for more than a decade as the executive director of Investigative Reporters and Editors (IRE), a 5,000-member organization, and as a professor at the University of Missouri School of Journalism. Before joining IRE, he was an award-winning investigative reporter at daily newspapers for 17 years. He co-founded the Global Investigative Journalism Network in 2003 and serves as chair of its board of directors. He has taught and spoken about investigative and computer-assisted reporting at newsrooms and universities in 25 countries.
Tasneem Raja, editor-in-chief, The Oaklandside
Tasneem is the editor-in-chief of The Oaklandside and a co-founder of its umbrella nonprofit, Cityside Journalism Initiative. A pioneer in data journalism and local nonprofit news startups, she co-founded The Tyler Loop, a nationally recognized community news platform in East Texas. She was a senior editor at NPR’s Code Switch and at Mother Jones, where the team she led helped build the first-ever database of mass shootings in America. She started her career as a features reporter at The Chicago Reader and The Philadelphia Weekly, and lives in Oakland with her husband, daughter, and two imperious terriers.
Norberto Santana, Jr, publisher, Voice of OC, INN board member
Norberto is an award-winning investigative reporter with nearly two decades reporting experience, most recently engaging Orange County government institutions and decision makers as the founding publisher of the nonprofit digital newsroom, Voice of OC. As publisher, Santana oversees all newsroom, engagement and fundraising operations and also writes a weekly Opinion column about Orange County government. Before founding Voice of OC in 2009, Santana was a lead investigative reporter for the Orange County Register from 2004-2009, focusing on county government. In addition to his experience as a journalist, the Southern California native has a master’s in Latin American Studies, has worked as an elections analyst on National Endowment for Democracy programs across Latin America and was one of the founders of CubaNet.org, a website featuring the work of dissident journalists inside Cuba that has operated since 1995.
Gabriel Schneider, assistant editor, CalMatters
Gabe is an assistant editor at the CalMatters College Journalism Network, as well as the lead editor at The Objective, a non-profit media reporting and criticism publication. His work has been published by outlets such as The Associated Press, MinnPost, Texas Tribune, and Los Angeles Magazine. He grew up in Los Angeles and attended UC San Diego, where he co-founded The Triton, a digital-first, independent, student-run newspaper.
Staff Liaison: Sharene Azimi, communications director
Simone Coxe, chair of board, CalMatters
Simone is a native Californian committed to journalism as a means to create a better world. She is chair of the board of directors of CalMatters and serves on the board of Internews, a nonprofit that supports independent media in 100 countries. And she spent eleven years on the KQED board. Professionally, Simone co-founded Blanc & Otus, a public relations firm serving the technology industry, and served as its CEO from 1985-2000.
Ryan Colaianni, senior vice president, crisis and issues lead, ReviveHealth
Ryan is a senior vice president, leading ReviveHealth’s communications and issues/crisis department. He is responsible for ensuring that his clients are prepared for the unexpected and help elevate their reputations. With a decade of agency experience, he is a poised crisis counselor, talented media trainer, has elevated the profile of Fortune 100 executives and University presidents, and has built impactful public affairs campaigns. A graduate of the University of Kansas, Ryan prepares clients for the unexpected and protects their reputations.
David French, senior vice president, government relations, National Retail Federation
As NRF’s chief lobbyist, he plans and implements advocacy and strategy for the world’s largest retail trade association. As executive director of NCCR, French leads efforts to advance sound public policy that serves restaurant businesses and the millions of people they employ. French has played a leading role in the most important legislative battles affecting retail, including swipe fee reform, internet sales tax, patents, labor policy issues, tax reform and trade policy. In 2017, French scored a rare double win for the retail industry on the same major legislation, first by managing a national coalition to stop the Border Adjustment Tax, a centerpiece of the House GOP plan for tax reform. French is routinely identified as one of the top association lobbyists in Washington by the Capitol Hill newspaper The Hill and other publications.
LaMont Guillory, managing director, marketing & communications, Seattle Foundation
LaMonte leads the marketing and communications strategy – from design to implementation, serving as an inclusive thought partner, and positions Seattle Foundation as a community philanthropy leader. He launched his career as an Account Executive at a PR agency. He grew to become the Public Relations Manager for an advertising & online marketing start-up, Director of Business Development for a start-up marketing agency, and Corporate Communications Lead in telecom. Most recently, Chief Communications Officer for the LOR Foundation. LaMonte serves on the Board of Directors for The Communications Network and the Rural Development Innovation Group (RCAP).
Stephanie Lulay, managing editor, co-founder, Block Club Chicago
Stephanie is managing editor and co-founder of Block Club Chicago, a nonprofit newsroom focused on Chicago’s neighborhoods. She previously served as senior editor and reporter at DNAinfo Chicago, the award-winning news site, and as a City Hall, education and housing reporter at the Aurora Beacon-News. Stephanie graduated from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign with a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in journalism. She lives on Chicago’s South Side.
Mark Rochester, managing editor, inewsource
Mark is the managing editor of inewsource, a newsroom in San Diego committed to exposing wrongdoing and holding powerful people and institutions accountable. Until April 2021 he was editor in chief of Type Investigations, a national investigative newsroom headquartered in Manhattan. He has held senior management positions overseeing investigative journalism from New York to California, having been senior news director for investigations at the Detroit Free Press prior to Type Investigations. His career includes other senior leadership positions at The Indianapolis Star, Newsday, The Denver Post, the Associated Press and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. He serves on the national board of directors of Investigative Reporters & Editors Inc. and is also on the national advisory board of the Investigative Reporting Workshop at American University in Washington, D.C.
Julie Sandorf, president, Revson Foundation
Julie has served as president of the Charles H. Revson Foundation since January 2008. Before joining Revson, she was a co-founder and executive director of Nextbook, a national organization dedicated to the creation and promotion of Jewish literature, culture, and the arts. From 1991 through 1999, she was president of the Corporation for Supportive Housing (CSH), an organization she founded that worked to deliver permanent solutions to chronic homelessness in partnership with philanthropic foundations, nonprofit organizations, and government at the local, state, and national levels.
Andrew Sherry, principal, Communications Partners
Andrew is a communications consultant helping people to build the future of journalism. Most recently, he served as vice president of communications at the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, a leading funder of nonprofit news and digital innovation. He started his career as a journalist, based in Hong Kong, Hanoi, Phnom Penh, Nicosia, and Paris for news agency AFP, then Dow Jones. Andrew left journalism in 1999 to work full-time on the Internet, helping launch a company that deployed broadband Internet to hotels in 14 cities and nine countries. He brought those skills back to journalism as director of online ventures for USA TODAY, then led the development of online communications for the Center for American Progress, which became one of the country’s most influential think tanks with 5 million unique monthly web visitors a month by the time Sherry moved to the Knight Foundation in 2012. He launched Communications Partners in August 2021.
Andres Torres, special assistant to the president and CEO, Robert R. McCormick Foundation
A committed partnership-builder, Andres has worked in the public, private, and nonprofit sectors fostering collaborations to drive social change. His experience includes policy-making in several fields, from transportation to tourism. Before entering philanthropy, he spent nearly a decade working in government at the City of Chicago and later the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning. Prior to McCormick, he led work at Grand Victoria Foundation developing networks to improve early childhood and environmental policy in Illinois. Andres holds degrees in City Design and Policy, from the London School of Economics, and Humanities, from Yale University.
Staff liaison: Jeffrey Woolverton, network philanthropy director.
Jay Burseth, development director, Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism
Jay joined the Center in April 2020 as the Development Director. His role includes setting the organization’s vision for fundraising growth; building and executing a development plan; working directly with donors and other supporters to further the Center’s mission; managing grant proposals and reports; and leading the development team and interns to meet fundraising goals. Prior to joining the Center, Burseth led fundraising for the Milwaukee County Parks and was the Development Director for the Milwaukee-based public radio music station, WMSE 91.7. Burseth holds a Master’s in Nonprofit Management and Leadership from UW-Milwaukee, where he focused on fundraising and marketing in public media, as well as a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and History, also from UWM.
Lisa Gardner-Springer, Senior Director, PRX
Lisa is the senior director of institutional fundraising at PRX. Her experience in fundraising spans 18 years. In 2010 she became senior manager of institutional fundraising at Public Radio International. There she transitioned to director of institutional funding and new business development. Lisa became the director of institutional fundraising with PRX in January of 2019, two years later she was named the senior director. Lisa has a BA in Mathematics and History from Macalester College and a Masters of Public Affairs from University of Minnesota-Twin Cities.
Michaux Hood, development director, Charlottesville Tomorrow
Michaux is a Charlottesville native who attended Albemarle County public schools and graduated from the University of North Carolina with a degree in Communications and Media Studies. After graduation she worked briefly as a contract worker for Americorps and through the Student Conservation Association for the federal government’s Department of the Interior for the National Park Service and Department of Agriculture for the National Forest Service. Upon her return to Charlottesville she worked in the internet startup sector and later started her own contracting and consulting business in brand management, online marketing, and constituent building for local and national private businesses and nonprofits. She also obtained certification as court and family mediator in the Virginia Judicial System.
Jill Kunishima, VP of development, Cityside
Jill is the VP of Development at Cityside. Stemming from a strong passion for equity and justice, she has spent the last 15 years as a nonprofit fund development professional, raising awareness and resources for a multitude of impactful and innovative organizations. Jill is a long-time resident of Oakland, California, and loves spending her free time with her family, eating, reading, traveling, and rooting for the Golden State Warriors. She received her BA from Mills College, and her MPA from San Francisco State University.
Marcia Parker, publisher and chief operating officer, CalMatters, INN board member
As Publisher and COO, Marcia oversees the CalMatters revenue team. Before she joined CalMatters in 2017, Marcia was Editorial Director for Patch’s West Coast local news sites, CIR’s California Watch site launch manager, and Assistant Dean at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism. She is on the boards of the Institute for Nonprofit News and the Emma Bowen Foundation, serves on the Stanford Knight Journalism Fellowships selection committee, and teaches at Northwestern University’s SF campus. Marcia earned her master’s degree from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University.
Nathaniel Pazik, chief of operations and development, The Counter
Nate joined The Counter after more than a decade working in fundraising capacities for such organizations as Columbia University and New York-Presbyterian Hospital. He has also developed an education program for early-career fundraisers and nonprofit leaders to better serve their donors.
Kristin Tessman, director of development and operations, Montana Free Press
Kristin is the Director of Development and Operations at Montana Free Press. Before joining MTFP, Kristin was the Executive Director of AJAY MT and brings with her fundraising, program development and nonprofit management experience. Kristin was born and raised in the southeast and earned her undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Georgia. In 2015 she moved to Montana with her husband and two daughters.
Juliana Thornton, development director, Center for Collaborative Investigative Journalism
Juliana spearheads the Center for Collaborative Investigative Journalism’s development efforts. She coordinates fundraising and development for the Department of Journalism at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg and its associated projects and events. She has 15 years’ experience in civil society, fundraising and development, and has held management, research and M&E and fundraising positions with various organizations working toward human rights and development in South Africa.
Staff liaison: Emily Roseman, research director & editor
Aasha Abdill, strategy and learning manager, Public Square, Democracy Fund
Aasha is the Strategy and Learning Manager, Public Square at Democracy Fund, an independent. Aasha supports program learning and strategy development, develops metrics, and manages external evaluation consultants for the Public Square team. Prior to Democracy Fund, Aasha was an independent research and evaluation consultant working with community-based organizations and local and state initiatives committed to addressing the systemic barriers to reducing racial and ethnic disparities in outcome achievement for youth, families and communities. Abdill holds a masters in quantitative methodology from Columbia University and a doctorate in sociology from Princeton University with concentrations in organizational theory, race and ethnic studies, and community studies. For undergraduate studies, she is a proud alumna of a historically Black college, Spelman College, and even prouder alumna of the Brooklyn School of Hard Knocks.
Nichole Dobo, senior editor for audience engagement, Hechinger Report
Nichole manages the social media, engagement and newsletter strategy and writes stories for The Hechinger Report. She has more than 15 years of experience writing about teaching and learning. After joining The Hechinger Report in 2014 to cover education and technology, she spent three years traveling the country to report and create The Hechinger Report’s first fully-reported newsletter. Her work has been published in publications including the Los Angeles Times, Newsweek, The Atlantic and Slate. She worked at local and statewide newspapers earlier in her career, earning a variety of awards. In 2021, she was awarded a Knight-Wallace Reporting Fellowship from the University of Michigan. Dobo, who grew up in rural western Pennsylvania, earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from The Pennsylvania State University.
Adam Giorgi, digital strategist, Daily Yonder
Adam works in business planning and digital strategy at the Center for Rural Strategies, which publishes the Daily Yonder. He previously worked in political reporting at NBC News and strategic communications for the administration of former Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton. He holds a master’s degree in public policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.
Victor Hernandez, chief content officer, WBUR
Victor is responsible for overseeing all aspects of editorial at WBUR including local news and programming, national programs, podcasting and CitySpace. Before joining WBUR in March 2021, Hernandez was executive editor at Cascade Public Media, a nonprofit media institution created through the merger of Seattle’s PBS TV station, KCTS 9 and digital news outlet Crosscut. Hernandez has held leadership roles at CNN, where he oversaw U.S. news coverage; NBC television affiliates in California; and a digital media technology startup. He’s a former academic fellow at the Missouri School of Journalism and a national board member with the Society of Professional Journalists. Hernandez has a degree in Mass Communication & Journalism from California State University, Fresno, and is scheduled to graduate this June from West Virginia University with an MS in Media Solutions and Innovation.
Damon Kiesow, Knight Chair in digital editing and producing, Missouri School of Journalism
Damon is a digital media pioneer who specializes in aligning storytelling, innovation and business strategies. He has focused his career on energizing newsroom practices and business strategies with emerging technologies. He most recently served as director of Product for McClatchy in Raleigh, North Carolina, working with a chain of local media companies from California to Pennsylvania. Kiesow’s career includes several prestigious fellowships. He served as a Knight-McCormick Leadership Fellow, a program run by the Knight Digital Media Center and the Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism at the University of Southern California, in 2011. He is a past board member of the National Press Photographers Association, and the New Hampshire Press Association and a former director of the Northern Short Course in Photojournalism.
Sheila Krumholz, executive director, OpenSecrets School of Journalism, INN board member
Sheila is OpenSecrets’ chief administrator, the liaison to its board and major funders and its primary spokesperson. Sheila became executive director in 2006, having spent eight years as OpenSecrets’ research director, supervising data analysis for OpenSecrets.org and OpenSecrets’ clients. She first joined the organization in 1989 as assistant editor of the very first edition of Open Secrets, OpenSecrets’ flagship publication. In 2010, Fast Company magazine named Sheila to its “Most Influential Women in Technology” list. Sheila has a degree in international relations and political science from the University of Minnesota.
Leslie Marable, data storyteller, Beacon Raconteur LLC
Leslie is a digital marketing strategist, trainer, Tableau developer and researcher who aims to support critical thinking and empower others through the consumption of data-based information. Marable spent 10 years as a writer and analyst for Entertainment Weekly, Inside.com, Consumer Reports and Neilsen, to name a few, before gradually transitioning into a creative puzzle solver. She has dedicated the last 20 years helping companies derive new data insights that can help inform content and product management strategies and website optimization. She is founder and head of Beacon Raconteur LLC.
Ruth McCambridge, former Editor in Chief, Nonprofit Quarterly Ruth is the founder and Editor Emerita of the Nonprofit Quarterly. She is now working with a group of colleagues on another startup called the Financial Commons which will provide a place for nonprofits to network on financial strategy. Her background includes forty-five years of experience in nonprofits, primarily in organizations that mix grassroots community work with policy change. Beginning in the mid-1980s, Ruth spent a decade at the Boston Foundation, developing and implementing capacity building programs and advocating for grantmaking attention to constituent involvement
Anita Zielina, director of news innovation and leadership, CUNY
Anita is an experienced digital media executive with a focus on digital transformation, modern leadership, and innovation management. She is currently the director of strategic initiatives at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism, where she and her team are responsible for professional training and executive education, as well as new strategic projects and custom training. She launched the school’s Executive Program in News Innovation and Leadership in 2019. Before joining CUNY in New York City, she held management roles in various European media organizations and led their transformation efforts. Anita was the first Austrian journalist selected for the fully funded Knight Journalism Fellowship at Stanford University, dedicated to entrepreneurship, innovation, and leadership in journalism. Anita holds an Executive MBA from INSEAD and a Master in Law from Vienna University. She is a non-executive board member at the Online News Association (ONA) and the Austrian Public Broadcaster (ORF), as well as the inaugural board chair of the News Product Alliance (NPA).
Ashley Zohn, VP/learning and impact, Knight Foundation
Ashley joined Knight Foundation in January 2019 and was named vice president, Learning and Impact, in March 2021. Zohn, who has more than a decade of experience advancing data-driven decision-making in the nonprofit, public and private sectors, oversees Knight’s research and assessment portfolios. Prior to Knight, Zohn oversaw the Continuous Improvement Program at the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). In this capacity, she was responsible for reviewing the agency’s responses following federally-declared disasters and building continuous improvement capacity at FEMA’s disaster operations. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in sociology from Princeton University, a Master of Business Administration from MIT Sloan School of Management and a Master of Public Administration from Harvard Kennedy School of Government. She is a native of Miami.
Staff liaison: Bridget Thoreson, member collaborations editor and Sharon McGowan, Amplify collaborations editor
Robert Rosenthal, former executive director, Reveal, INN board emeritus director
Robert is one of the co-founders and former board member of INN. He is now on the board of the Center for Investigative Reporting/Reveal and was CIR’s executive director from 2008 until 2017, during which time he expanded its staff from 7 to 70. CIR/Reveal is widely recognized for the quality and credibility of its journalism and its constant innovation around storytelling and distribution. Rosenthal spent the bulk of his nearly 50-year career in journalism at The Philadelphia Inquirer, starting as a reporter, and a foreign correspondent and becoming its executive editor in 1998.
Note: This task force is just forming. Interested? Contact Bridget@INN.org.
Staff liaison: Sara Shahriari, leadership & talent development director.
Matt DeReinzo, editor in chief, Center for Public Integrity
Matt is editor-in-chief of the Center for Public Integrity. Previously, he was vice president of news at Hearst’s newspapers in Connecticut, and served as the first full-time executive director of LION, a national nonprofit that supports local independent online news publishers. He has also written a monthly column about the media industry for Editor & Publisher magazine.
Erika Dilday, executive director, American Documentary and executive producer at POV and America ReFramed, INN board member
Erika, a producer, journalist and media executive, is the executive director of American Documentary Inc. and executive producer of its award-winning documentary series POV on PBS and America ReFramed on WORLD Channel. Most recently, she was the CEO of Futuro Media, a multimedia organization that gives a critical voice to the diversity of the American experience through award-winning journalistic content for and about BIPOC. Prior to Futuro Media, she was the Executive Director of Maysles Documentary Center where she produced the acclaimed documentary, In Transit.
Amy Kovac-Ashley, vice president and senior director at the American Press Institute
Amy is vice president and senior director at the American Press Institute. She leads the American Press Institute’s newsroom learning program, which provides support and resources to local innovators in newsrooms across the country. She oversees API’s Changemaker Network, where these innovators connect with one another and share best practices. She is interested in finding new ways to support newsroom talent development and to facilitate peer learning among journalists. Amy holds a master’s degree from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism and a master’s degree and bachelor’s degree from Stanford University. She lives in Washington, D.C., with her husband and two children.
Giles Morris, executive director, Charlottesville Tomorrow
Giles is the Executive Director of Charlottesville Tomorrow, a hyperlocal journalism nonprofit with a mission to expand civic engagement and foster a vibrant, inclusive, and interdependent community. The child of journalists, he joined the family trade in 2007 as the general assignment reporter for the Rhinelander Daily News in Wisconsin. He served as Editor-in-Chief of C-VILLE Weekly and as Vice President for Marketing & Communications at James Madison’s Montpelier, where he was instrumental in the rollout of the award-winning, descendant-driven slavery exhibition, “The Mere Distinction of Colour.” His journalism and digital media projects have been recognized by LION, AAN, ASALH, Virginia Press Association, North Carolina Press Association, and others. He holds an M. Div. from Harvard Divinity School and a B.A. in English from Princeton University.
Fareed Mostoufi, associate director of education and DEI Lead, Pulitzer Center
Fareed is part of the education team at Pulitzer Center, where he focuses on designing classroom resources and connecting journalists to students. He has been a freelance curriculum writer for Pulitzer Center for several years, but he joins the team after working for nearly four years as a theater artist and educator in the Community Engagement department at Arena Stage in Washington D.C. While at Arena, Fareed devised and directed original, autobiographical plays with communities in Washington D.C., Peru, India and Croatia that explored violence, health and identity. Before that, Fareed taught ESL and Spanish in D.C. Public Schools. As a recipient of a 2009 Fulbright Scholarship to Argentina, he also taught culture, literature and playwriting at a teachers’ college in San Miguel de Tucuman. In collaboration with the Ministry of Education there, he created the workshop Drama Techniques for English Language Learners, which was presented to more than 400 teachers in the Tucumán province. Fareed received his BFA in Dramatic Writing from New York University in 2008 and his MA in Teaching from American University in 2012.
Bruce Putterman, CEO & project director, CTMirror
As Publisher and CEO of The Connecticut Mirror Bruce is responsible for the strategic direction of the organization, revenue generation, product innovation, reader engagement, and all business operations. Before joining The Connecticut Mirror in 2017 Bruce owned and operated a West Hartford-based consulting practice for 16 years, providing strategic planning and marketing services to more than 50 nonprofit organizations, advocacy groups, public agencies, private equity firms, and other for-profit clients. His interest in journalism dates back to his college years when he worked in commercial radio and TV news. Bruce served as an elected member of the West Hartford Board of Education from 2003 through 2015, including three years as chair of the board. He has a Bachelor of Arts in History and an M.B.A. in Marketing from Cornell University.
Cirien Saadeh, executive director, The Uptake
Dr. Cirien Saadeh (she/they) is an Arab-American journalist and educator who works at the intersections of journalism, social movements, experiential education, and sustainability. She was trained as a community organizer by the former Organizing Apprenticeship Project (now Voices for Racial Justice). She has written for local, national, and international publications and is committed to using journalism as a tool in the pursuit of justice for all historically disenfranchised communities. She produces and hosts the Radical News Radio Hour for WFNU and is the co-founder and Program Manager of the Journalism of Color Training Center, sponsored by XITO – the Xicanx Institute for Teaching and Organizing. Saadeh also is the Executive Director for The UpTake – a community news organization and Associate Faculty at Prescott College where she received her PhD in Sustainability Education in 2019. As part of her doctoral program, she developed a theory “Journalism of Color,” which asks, in short: how do we develop sustainable journalism platforms and spaces in historically-marginalized communities and how do we create journalism methodologies which build community power and resilience? Saadeh is currently conducting research at the intersections of journalism, social movements, and cooperative sustainability, as well as the intersections of Journalism of Color and racial equity impact analyses.
Ron Smith, editor/project director of the Milwaukee Neighborhood News Service, INN board member
Ron previously served as the managing editor for news at USA TODAY. Before moving to the Washington, D.C., area in 2016, Ron was the deputy managing editor for daily news and production at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, where he oversaw the breaking news hub, production desks and was the key point person for print story selections and workflow. He also has worked as an editor at The Oregonian, the Los Angeles Times and Newsday. He is known for championing great journalism and the great journalists who produce great works. He “proceeds until apprehended’ and is not afraid to roll up his sleeves and help others — all while having fun along the way.
Jodi Spotted Bear, executive director, Indigenous Media Freedom Alliance
Jodi is an award-winning journalist and opinion writer who’s won awards from mainstream, military, university and Native American press associations. She wrote for daily newspapers for nearly 15 years. Her first story was published more than three decades ago. Jodi reported on American Indian issues for 11 years as a national correspondent for Lee Newspapers in Missoula, Montana and Lincoln, Nebraska. Jodi is Mandan, Hidatsa and Minneconjou Lakota. She founded and is the online publisher of Buffalo’s Fire, an independent digital news site. She lives in Twin Buttes, N.D.on the Fort Berthold Reservation with her husband and daughter.