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Mitch's Media Musings August 2021

Mitch's Media Musings

July 16 - August 15, 2021

Some of you have enjoyed my (often) daily streaming feed from my backyard bird feeder. If you’d like to listen to the relaxing sounds of birds and bees around my water feature, click over to my Facebook page (@MitchLeff) most mornings! You might even see a chipmunk.

But let’s get to it: This month’s Musings are going to give your scrolling finger a workout!

For those working journalists, we’ve got a great assortment of sources from on a range of topics (more details in the Mitch’s Media Match expert database):


  • Dr. Vonda Wright is an Orthopedic Surgeon and a Women’s Health Expert. She can about injuries, and healthy aging. Contact: Gina McKenzie,

Business Topics

  • The Goizueta Business School at Emory can usually find a source on just about anything that’s business-related. (Contact: Kim Speece

    • Prof. Saloni Vastani can talk about the travel industry and how it’s changed during and after the pandemic. (Contact: Kim Speece

    • Prof. Tom Smith can talk about the latest Georgia job numbers that came out this week (Contact: Kim Speece

  • Experts with accounting and advisory firm Moore Colson (can speak to topics such as: Inflation, supply chain issues, current economic implications for manufacturing/retail/logistics industries, PPP loan guidance, fraud risk, banking industry issues, tax issues, financial due diligence, the Employee Retention Credit, cyber security issues and why it’s a problem for lenders, M&A, bad loans, CRE, the impact of the extended moratorium on evictions and more. (Contact: Meredith Fletcher,

  • Private equity firm and SPAC experts Navigation Capital Partners ( can speak to the rise of SPACs, how they work, why this investment strategy is attractive, perspective on economic landscape as a whole (as they touch multiple industries). (Contact: Meredith Fletcher,

  • Black Business Month

    • Joey Womack, founder/CEO of Goodie Nation - can speak to support for Black businesses, diverse startups, and social impact. Goodie Nation is a national support nonprofit that is closing the relationship gap for tech-focused social entrepreneurs and diverse founders. Goodie Nation helps founders accelerate success by providing access to capital, pilot opportunities and best practices through mentorship and connections ( (Contact: Meredith Fletcher,

    • Nita Cooper owns Stars N Skyes Travel. The pandemic shut down most personal vacation travel, but the Fayetteville agency turned to social media to maintain her business. She specializes in packages for groups, romantic getaways, and solo trips. (Contact: Kim Speece,

COVID Vaccine and Related Issues (Contact: Mitch Leff,

  • Dr. Cecil Bennett, Board Certified Family Physician, graduate of the Morehouse College of Medicine, Medical Director of a primary care center in Newnan. He can discuss the vaccine hesitancy, the new delta variant, and other COVID issues.

  • Earlier this year, an Atlanta-based Facebook group -- GA COVID FAX APPT HELP -- was incredibly busy. Created by Roswell resident Noel Schenck, the group was sharing the availability on COVID-19 vaccinations and working hard to meet the huge demand for information. The pace slowed quite a bit as millions of Georgians got vaccinated. But it’s picked up again this month as COVID numbers have increased … and with the announcement of booster shots.

Restaurants (Contact: Gretchen Howard,, 828-231-3594.

  • Franchising: Lauren Fernandez is the CEO and Founder of Full Course, a restaurant development and investment firm which incubates and accelerates emerging fast casual restaurant brands. Full Course guides restaurant owners through a process of optimization, strategic growth planning and development, and supports investment for rapid expansion.

  • Parking: As the president of Phoenix Parking Solutions, Jeff Patterson is leading innovation in the parking industry. His company specializes in parking management services including management of modern mixed-use developments and parking garages, valet for restaurants, hotels, retail shopping complexes, private events both commercial and residential, venue parking, digital enforcement, and consulting.

  • Georgia Restaurant Association - The GRA’s mission is to serve as the voice for Georgia’s Restaurants in Advocacy, Education and Awareness. From large chains to start-ups, the GRA helps make Georgia a better place for restaurants to do business and helps make restaurants better for Georgia.


4 Questions Journalist Spotlight - Check out our latest interviews with Christine Pullara with Atlanta & Company, Joseph Ferguson with the AJC, Karina Antenucci with Simply Buckhead, and freelance writer Jennifer Franklin. You can watch in video format or listen to audio: You can also find our podcasts on just about any podcast platform (Apple, Amazon, Spotify, iHeartRadio, etc.).

Georgia Press Association Better Newspaper Contest Winners. Details at

  • Riley Bunch for Photo of the Year

  • General Excellent, Gwinnett Daily Post, Marietta Daily Journal, Athens Banner-Herald, Times-Georgian, Newnan Times, Champion, Appen Media Group

  • Best Newspaper Website, Marietta Daily Journal, Gwinnett Daily Post, Covington News, Springs Publishing

  • Best Photo Gallery, Gwinnett Daily Post, Athens Banner-Herald, Rockdale

Media Media Musings

Atlanta Press Club - Director Sheena Roetman departs the APC for a position with the Native American Journalists Association as their new Education Manager!

Atlanta Progressive News - We've added this online publication and its editor Matthew Cardinale to our database.

Appen Media - Chamian Cruz joins as a reporter covering local government in North Atlanta. She's worked previously with the Northeast Georgian and Gwinnett Daily Post newspapers.

Atlanta Business Chronicle - Dyana Bagby departs the paper.

Atlanta Journal-Constitution

  • Former reporter Mary McDonald has joined the Massachusetts Teachers Association.

  • Christopher Daniel is working the music beat on a freelance basis.

  • Arielle Kass departs the paper. She's now covering real estate for Crain's Detroit Business.

  • The AJC has launched "The Race for City Hall," a weekly roundup written by JD Capelouto and Wilborne Nobles. Details via this link.

  • Matt Bruce is now covering Cobb County for the paper.

Atlanta Parent - Emily Webb joins as staff writer

The Current GA - After almost 25 years, Mary Landers has left the Savannah Morning News. She's going to be the new environmental reporter for The Current GA, a nonprofit online publication focused on coastal Georgia. Check them out at

Daily Report - Everett Catts joins as Brand Editor. He was previously with the Neighbor Newspapers Group.

Georgia magazine - Lindsay Penticuff joins as Associate Editor.

Georgia Public Broadcasting

Marietta Daily Journal - Hunter Riggall joins as reporter.

Neighbor Newspapers - Elizabeth Nouryeh Clay is now editor of the Northside Neighbor and the Sandy Springs Neighbor.

Newsy - They're hiring lots of local folks! Matt Pearl from 11Alive, David Ries from WGCL, Tracy Carmony who worked at 11alive for a long time. Eric Ludgood, who's been the Asst. News Director at Fox5 for years, will be the Head of the new Atlanta-based operation (details:

North Fulton Business Radio X - John Ray is the host of this show.

Reporter Newspapers - Springs Publishing, parent company of Reporter Newspapers, Atlanta Intown, and Atlanta Senior Life, collected 17 awards – including six first-place honors – in the Georgia Press Association’s 2020 Better Newspaper Contest. Details:

WABE Radio

  • Reporter Emma Hurt departs the station this month. Emma's been an incredible force for political reporting at the station. She's heading to Berlin for two months for an International Center for Journalists Burns Fellowship. While there she'll be filing stories for NPR and Taz Berlin leading up to the German elections in September. She'll be back in Atlanta after that but no details yet for our loyal readers on where she'll be working. I'm sure someone will snap her up!

  • Anchor/reporter Jim Burress will be off the air for a little bit as he recovers from surgery for a congenital heart issue. Details from the AJC's Rodney Ho:


  • Cody Chaffins has been named host of Fox5's Friday night sports show, High5Sports. He starts Aug. 20. He says he'll be ... In Your Face!

  • Congrats to Good Day Atlanta anchor Alyse Eady on the birth of her son, Wyatt.

  • Lindsay Tuman joins as morning reporter on Good Day Atlanta.

  • Long time Assignment editor and producer Ines Hooper has retired. She's been with the station for more than 20 years.

WebMD - Aaron Gould Sheinin promoted to Executive Editor for WebMD and MedScape.

Wired magazine - Writer Maryn McKenna is joining the magazine as senior writer for health, covering Covid and also all her adjacent obsessions of emerging infections and AMR, health policy and technology, surveillance and diagnostics.


  • Producer David Ries departs for Newsy. He's been with the station for eight years and worked at WXIA TV for 18 years.

  • Congrats to reporter/anchor Ashley Thompson on her engagement! Look for her at a bridal expo near you.

  • Crystal Bui joins as a general assignment reporter during the week and on the weekends. She comes from KSTP TV in Minneapolis. Past stops include KIMA TV in Yakima, WA, NBC10 in Rhode Island, and WCBS TV in NYC. Check out her travel blog, "Adventures with Crystal" at

  • Former reporter Sonia Moghe named Legal and Justice reporter at CNN!



  • Congrats to reporter Jerry Carnes on the recent marriage of his daughter! Jerry has set a new standard for father / daughter dances.

  • Sports reporter Alex Glaze departs.

  • Reporter Chenue Her will depart the station at the end of August. He'll be going to WOI TV (ABC) in Des Moines, IA as the Monday - Friday "Good Morning Iowa" anchor.

  • Madison Carter joins the station's Atticus investigative team as a reporter.

  • Reggie Chatman joins as sports reporter/anchor. He joins from WBRZ in Baton Rouge, LA.

  • Former producer Le'Ondre Harris has been named News Director at KTUL TV in Tulsa, OK.

News from the PR Dept

  • PRSA Phoenix Awards - If you didn't get your entries done by July 30, you missed the deadline!

  • Brave PR promotes Jennifer Walker to President

  • Dave Poston of Poston Communications has been named among the Most Admired CEOs by the Atlanta Business Chronicle.

  • PRSA Georgia's August Chapter Champion is Jacob Jordan, Assistant VP for Corporate Communications for Wells Fargo & Co. in the Southeast.



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