Kelly Scott: A look at revamped RGJ newsroom

Just a few weeks ago, I told you about the Reno Gazette-Journal’s efforts to reinvent our reporting structure to put you, the reader, at the center of everything we do. Well, we’ve taken a big step in that process. We’ve restructured our organization — and everyone in the newsroom has positions that have been newly created or sharply focused.
Let me introduce you to those people and their roles:

  • Anjeanette Damon is our city watchdog reporter. She’ll keep a watchful eye on our city government.
  • Ben Spillman will delve into all things about the outdoors in Nevada, including the aspirational stories, the business of the outdoors and the how-to’s.
  • Johnathan Wright is our Food and Drink reporter, telling the stories of our burgeoning culinary and drink scene. He’ll also continue with his popular society column.
  • Emerson Marcus is our consumer advocate. He’ll fight for answers to your questions in Ask the RGJ and take on consumer issues to make your lives better.
  • Yvonne Beasley is our new city life reporter. She’ll tell the stories of our thriving startup scene, life in the city and gentrification efforts in Midtown and other neighborhoods.
  • Mark Robison is our community leadership columnist. He’ll continue on with Fact Checker and take up some of our editorial page duties.
  • Jeff DeLong is our investigative reporter covering air, water and land. He’ll keep a weather eye on the environment from Lake Tahoe to Pyramid Lake and beyond.
  • Jason Hidalgo is our investigative reporter dedicated to Tesla and all the ancillary business and development that comes with it. He will keep tabs on the development and taxpayer money.
  • Bill O’Driscoll will cover gaming and tourism, telling the stories of one of Reno’s main industries. And he’ll dig into the RSCVA, airport authority and other gaming and tourism-related entities.
  • Ray Hagar will continue covering state politics, offering analysis and in-depth reporting from Carson City.
  • Chris Murray will become our sports columnist, focusing on individual and mountain sports such as running, cycling and triathlons. He’ll also continue telling Wolf Pack and prep sports stories.
  • Jim Krajewski will cover prep sports, handling coverage at our area high schools during all of the seasons.
  • As the Reno Retro reporter, Guy Clifton will tell the stories of Reno’s history for all stages of residents – from those who just moved here to those who lived the history. He also will cover the area’s many special events.
  • Susan Skorupa will be the Reno Peeps reporter, a fun name for a fun beat: the stories of the people who live in Northern Nevada and make this community the dynamic place that it is.
  • Photographer Andy Barron will showcase his skills on breaking news and sports.
  • Reporters David Jacobs and Marcella Corona will cover breaking news in Northern Nevada.
  • Pete Krajewski, Duke Ritenhouse and Ian McGibboney are producers who keep the stories flowing on our website, print pages, mobile apps and tablet displays.

Let me introduce you to our leadership team and their new roles:

  • Peggy Santoro is our content strategist. She will work with reporters and photographers to shape the stories they tell.
  • James Ku, our consumer experience director, works with producers, analysts and others to understand the way you use our content and then improve the way we produce it.
  • Caren Roblin is our audience analyst. She spends time devouring all the research about our readers so we can deliver relevant content to you.
  • Watchdog coach Brian Duggan will develop, guide and lead our investigative and in-depth reporting projects.
  • As innovation coach, Johanna Huybers leads our efforts to create new content for you and deliver it in the way you want it. She’ll guide our efforts to think in new, engaging ways.
  • Planning editor Jeff Gifford is essentially the air traffic controller of our room — making sure we deliver relevant content to our print readers.

That’s a long list of people in new roles — and we’re hiring for about a dozen more journalists to add to our talented staff. But, you’ll notice some familiar names are missing. We thank Tim Dunn, Marilyn Newton, Steve Falcone, Steve Timko, Lenita Powers, Steve Yingling and Liz Margerum for all of their contributions over the years. Dan Hinxman will continue to cover the Wolf Pack through the end of the season.
Many of our departing colleagues are journalistic legends who covered Northern Nevada for decades, documenting our history while making this community a better place with every story, photo and headline.

In the coming weeks, I intend to introduce you to the journalists in these new roles as well as the new ones we hire. They’ll spend a lot of time, too, working to understand what stories you want them to tell and continuing the RGJ’s tradition of delivering in-depth storytelling that resonates with this community.