Innovation in Local News

April 7, 2022
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This event is part of the News Innovation Series, which is supported by a gift from Elaine Schuster.

The digital and local news industry is in full disruption, with legacy players shedding staff and consolidating while an unprecedented number of innovative digital startups seek to create a healthy new ecosystem and order. In this panel discussion, we heard from some of the most innovative entrepreneurs and journalists leading the new wave — about the reality of both the headwinds and the tailwinds in this challenging environment.

Craig Forman, Shorenstein Center Schuster Media & Technology Fellow and former president and CEO of McClatchy & Co. moderated the discussion.

Panelists included:

  • Madeleine Bair, founder and CEO of El Tímpano, a pathbreaking community reporting lab focused on the Latino and Mayan immigrant communities of the San Francisco Bay Area.
  • Paulette Brown-Hinds, publisher of Black Voice News and founder of Voice Media Ventures, and a leading thinker and investor on digital (and legacy) community media.
  • Margaret Coker, founder and CEO of The Current, a local news digital startup focused on coastal Georgia. Previously, Margaret was Baghdad bureau chief of The New York Times and also foreign correspondent at The Wall Street Journal.
  • Candice Fortman, cofounder and CEO of Detroit’s Outlier Media, a local digital startup that uses a variety of innovative techniques to reach an underserved audience.
  • Jessica Yellin, founder and CEO of NewsNotNoise, where she has built on her outstanding broadcast career at CNN and ABC to create a widely watched and highly regarded video news startups on Instagram.