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Mitch's Media Musings Sept. 2021

Mitch's Media Musings

Aug. 16 - Sept. 15, 2021


  • Matt Hennie departs Project Q for a position as Executive Editor with the Wichita Beacon.

  • Veteran journalist Jim Kemp has died. Kemp, who died peacefully at home in July, worked for half a century in the news business – in Korea, France, Galveston, New Orleans, Baton Rouge, Pittsburgh, and ultimately as senior assignment editor on the National Desk at Cable News Network. He was 89 and had suffered from COPD and lymphadema for some years. A memorial service will happen at a future date, due to the resurgence of COVID-19. Kemp was the father of Clayton Crescent editor Robin Kemp. More at:

  • NATAS Silver and Gold Circle - Congrats to the honorees for the Silver and Gold Circles this year! The Silver Circle honorees (25 years in the business) are Alvin Bryant (WSB-TV), Ray Carter (WSB-TV), Gianncarlo Cifuentes (Univision), Deborah Collura (WGCL-TV), Chris Holcomb (WXIA-TV), Karen Minton (WSB-TV), Vicki Montet (CNN Newsource), Jon Nelson (GPB), Tai Takahashi (WJTV/WHLT), Bill Walsh (WCSC-TVT). The Gold Circle is a distinction reserved for those who have dedicated 50 or more years pioneering, advancing and serving the industry and the public. This year’s Gold circle inductees are Billye Aaron (TV Pioneer), Xernona Clayton (TV Pioneer), and Eric Land (ABC33/40.)

  • The Reporter Newspapers Group now has a partnership with the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Specifically with their Atlanta Senior Life publication, they'll be providing content to the AJC. Details:

AIB - Audrey Galax is now Community Engagement Manager

Atlanta magazine - After four years at the magazine, news editor Thomas Wheatley departs. He's been a top editor there for years and will be missed. Looks for him leading the new Axios bureau in Atlanta.

Atlanta Business Chronicle

  • Eric Jackson departs. He's joining @Sportico as a sports business writer at the end of the month.

Atlanta Inno - Check out Erin Schilling's Bytes with the Beat segment:

Atlanta Journal-Constitution

  • Former AJC reporter Rana Cash is now the executive editor of the Charlotte Observer. She joins from the Savannah Morning News. Cash is the first Black editor in the Observer's 135-year history. More:

  • Rosalind Bentley has had her Oxford American essay, The Blessing and Burden of Forever," named as a notable work in the upcoming American Essays collection.

  • Reporter Kristal Dixon departs for Axios

  • Tim Darnell departs for Capital Beat News Service

  • The paper has launched Unapologetically ATL, a free weekly newsletter that explores the news, trends and events shaping Black culture in Atlanta. The papers says "Our team of writers, photographers and videographers will keep you informed every Thursday with the latest and most important news about Black topics rooted in Atlanta’s civil rights history and its standing as a cultural hotspot. Co-hosted by AJC journalists Nedra Rhone and Ernie Suggs, Unapologetically ATL represents the extensive expertise of our staff and sources who are fully embedded in our communities." More at

  • Take a read through this great piece by the AJC's Joseph Ferguson, "My Stutter." Link:

Axios - Axios launched a new bureau in Atlanta, led by Thomas Wheatley, Emma Hurt, and Kristal Dixon.

Capital Beat News - Tim Darnell joins the bureau

(The) Champion - Christine Fonville joins as staff reporter

Cherokee Tribune - Joe Parker joins as reporter. He was most recently with the Appen Media Group.

Clayton Crescent

CNHI - Asia Ashley joins as Georgia correspondent as social justice reporter

Georgia Health News - GHN is now a part of Kaiser Health News! The GHN operation is being enhanced by becoming a part of a large and prestigious national journalism organization, Kaiser Health News (KHN). With GHN as its initial hub in the South, the nonprofit Kaiser Health News operation will expand across the region, with its home base in Atlanta. Andy Miller will become the interim chief of the KHN Southern Bureau, and GHN board member Sabriya Rice, the Knight Chair in Health and Medical Journalism at the University of Georgia’s Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication, will be senior adviser for the bureau. More details at: We'll be talking with Miller about all these positive changes in an upcoming 4 Questions Journalist Spotlight podcast.

Georgia Public Broadcasting

  • Emilia Brock departs for a position as Senior Podcast Producer at School of Humans, working on their upcoming slate of creative audio stories.

  • Emily Jones departs

Georgia Voice - Katie Burkholder is now Deputy Editor.

Marietta Daily Journal - We met recently with JK Murphy and Jon Gillooly to talk about a new feature they recently added to the paper. Readers can now submit a press release for publication via this link. The cost is $25.

Reporter Newspapers - Check out their new Friday feature called "My Top 5 Something."

Rome News Tribune - Payton Elliott joins as a reporter.

Town Square Family Lifestyle - Check out this new magazine! It's focused on Paulding County.

Univision - Mariela Romero has been inducted into the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce's Hall of Fame!

Vox - Susan Landrum has departed. Allison Hood is the interim executive director.


  • Johnny Kauffman departs for a job with Campfire Media.

  • Roxanne Scott departs. She'll be moving to New York for a position as an audio producer with Futuro Media.

  • Reporter Stephannie Stokes received an award from RTNDA in the Radio category for her investigative report "As property values rise in Atlanta, so does the exploitation of Black homeowners."

  • Rahul Bali joins as political reporter, replacing the irreplaceable Emma Hurt (who moved to Axios). Bali was most recently with the Oconee Radio Network. In his younger days, he was also a producer at WSB Radio for the legendary Mike Kavanagh.


  • Kaitlyn Pratt returns from maternity leave!

  • Deidra Dukes shifts from weekends to weekday reporting. Details via Rodney Ho.

WGCL - Lindsey Basye joins as Director of Investigations

WSB Radio

  • Scott Slade tells us that the recent CHOA Cara-A-Thon for the AFLAC Cancer Center has raised over $1.7 million, with donations still coming in. Scott thanks the station's wonderful listeners. And if you didn't donate last month, it's not too late! Just click over to

  • Congrats to Mark Arum on his recent nuptials!


  • Anchor/Reporter Wendy Corona has been inducted into the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce's Hall of Fame!

  • Anchor Jorge Estevez will receive the Mass Media Visibility Award for breaking barriers as the first news anchor in Atlanta that openly identifies as a member of the LGBTQ+ community and his work within that community.

WVEE - Maria Boynton will be inducted into the GA Assoc of Broadcasters Hall of Fame at noon Friday Oct 22. Link

WXIA-TV / 11Alive

  • Kerry Browning retired Aug. 31. Kerry has been a mainstay in Atlanta journalism for decades and says "I will end my career as a journalist, which began on June 5th, 1971, and will cease on August 31, 2021 when I retire from WXIA TV after 11 years and 4 months here. Along the way 30 years at WSB radio, a couple at CNN, and 7 years at stations in Jackson, Macon, and Athens in high school and college."

  • Former reporter Ryan Kruger has been named the 4 p.m. anchor at Fox46 in Charlotte.

  • Lindsey Basye departs for CBS46 where she'll be Director of Investigations

  • Ryan Dennis departs. He's now with a company called "Revolt"

News from the PR Dept.

  • PRSA Georgia - Panel on "pivoting" with Atlanta media, including Nicole Carr (ProPublica), Chenue Her (WXIA), LaShawn Hudson (WABE), Everett Catts (Daily Report), Chaundra Lucket (moderator).

  • Brave PR founder Kristin Cowart Pierce on the latest "All Good Things" podcast with Lynn Smith. Link:

  • Mallory Blount announced she's the press secretary for Herschel Walker's campaign. @malloryblount on Twitter if you'd like to follow her.

  • Denise Grant retires from her position as COO of PRSA Georgia after 38 years! The new Chapter Administrator, Victoria Stanton, starts Sept. 7.



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