Community Impact Newspaper is announcing the addition of two reporting positions in Texas this year, including a statewide reporter and a Harris County beat reporter, through a partnership with Report for America.
Report for America is a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms to report on under-covered issues and communities. The program has grown exponentially just in the last four years—in 2018 there were 18 reporters nationwide, and this year there are 300 reporters in the program.
The two new reporter positions will work from Community Impact’s headquarters in Pflugerville, just outside Austin, and the company’s Houston office, providing news in print and online to the 30-plus markets the media company covers in Austin, Houston, Dallas-Fort Worth and San Antonio.
Community Impact selected both beats to provide additional coverage at the local level for free to its readers, as both topics are areas that have never previously had dedicated reporters at CI.
“We just never really did justice before with our state coverage at the local level,” Community Impact’s Executive Editor Joe Warner said. “With the number of papers we have in Texas, we wanted to have statewide coverage but down to the neighborhood level. That’s what we’re looking forward to as elections come up this November and the legislative session next year.”
Hannah Norton, a graduate of the University of Missouri, will serve as Community Impact’s statewide reporter, covering a variety of state policy and political issues, along with the midterm elections in November and the 2023 Texas Legislative session.
“During my first two months on the job, I’ve had the opportunity to report on a wide variety of topics, from education to the environment and health care to public safety,” she said. “I’m excited to continue to get to know my new home as I cover statewide issues that directly impact Texans, including next year’s legislative session.”
Rachel Carlton, a graduate of Rice University, is taking on the Harris County beat for Community Impact. Harris County is the third largest county in the U.S., home to 4.6 million people and governed by four elected commissioners and a county judge.
“I’m really excited to bring more transparency and understanding to Harris County Commissioners Court during my time at CI,” she said. “So much of the discussion surrounding the court is highly politicized and misrepresents what the commissioners actually do and how the county spends its money.”
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