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Liz Willen


Liz Willen, a longtime education journalist, has led the award-winning Hechinger Report staff as editor in chief since 2011. A sought-after moderator of education conferences and events, Willen also writes the “From the Editor’s Desk” column and manages funder relations. Willen previously worked at an array of newspapers as well as at Bloomberg News, where she received numerous awards for writing and reporting. At The Hechinger Report, she’s won awards for commentary and exemplary leadership. Willen got her start in newspapers as feature editor of “The Rag,” in Northport, New York, and spent years trying to figure out New York City’s public school system, both as a reporter and a parent. She’s a graduate of Tufts University and Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism and a board member for the Spencer Education Fellowships at Columbia.


Sarah Garland


Sarah Garland oversees editorial planning and budgeting, edits K-12 stories and manages editorial partnerships with other news outlets. She has worked at Hechinger since 2010, and before that wrote about education, criminal justice and immigration for publications including The New York Times, The New York Sun, Marie Claire, Newsweek and New York Newsday. As a Spencer Fellow in Education Reporting at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism, she wrote “Divided We Fail” (Beacon Press, 2013), about court-ordered school desegregation in her hometown of Louisville, Kentucky, where she attended public schools. Her first book, “Gangs in Garden City” (Nation Books, 2008), was about transnational street gangs from Central America. She earned a master’s degree in journalism and Latin American studies from New York University and a bachelor’s in urban studies from Macalester College.


Jill Barshay

STAFF columnist

Jill Barshay writes the weekly “Proof Points” column about education research and data, covering a range of topics from early childhood to higher education. She taught algebra to ninth-graders for the 2013-14 school year. Previously, Barshay was the New York bureau chief for Marketplace, a national business show on public radio stations. She has also written for Congressional Quarterly, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and the Financial Times, and appeared on CNN and ABC News. She was a 2016-17 Spencer Fellow in Education Reporting. In 2019 she received the American Educational Research Association’s award for excellence in media reporting on education research. A graduate of Brown University, Barshay holds master’s degrees from the London School of Economics and Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.


Matt Bruderle


Matt Bruderle manages travel, human resources and corporate sponsorships. Before coming to Hechinger in 2007, he worked in student affairs at Purchase College, SUNY. He has a bachelor’s degree in communication from Virginia Tech and a master’s degree in higher education administration from Colorado State University.


Sarah Butrymowicz


Sarah Butrymowicz oversees and contributes to The Hechinger Report’s investigative and data work covering all levels of education, from early childhood to K-12 to higher education. She has worked at Hechinger since 2010 and, in that time, her work has appeared in dozens of news outlets, including The New York Times, The Washington Post and USA Today. Butrymowicz has won several journalism awards, including the Society of Professional Journalists Sigma Delta Chi Award for investigative reporting and two Front Page awards from the Newswomen’s Club of New York. She received a bachelor’s degree from Tufts University and a master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.


Sarah Carr


Sarah Carr edits stories and contributes reporting from New England. From 2011 to 2014, she oversaw Hechinger’s coverage of New Orleans and Mississippi. Since then, she has led an investigative education reporting team at the Boston Globe and a reporting fellowship at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism called the Teacher Project, where she created the “What My Students Taught Me” podcast and spearheaded collaborations with more than 30 editorial partners. She has won more than a dozen awards. and her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Washington Post, Slate, TIME and NBC News. As a Spencer Fellow at Columbia University, Carr reported “Hope Against Hope” (Bloomsbury, 2013), about a student, a principal and a teacher in post-Katrina schools in New Orleans. Carr is a graduate of Williams College and Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.


Pete D’Amato


Pete D’Amato designs and produces interactive digital tools and stories with a focus on data and statistics. He also creates graphics for The Hechinger Report. He started his journalism career as a writer and photographer in Latin America, and his work has appeared in The New York Times, Americas Quarterly, Vice and Before joining Hechinger, Pete was the deputy web editor at Crain’s New York Business. He holds a bachelor’s degree from Boston University and a master’s degree in Journalism and Latin American and Caribbean Studies from New York University.


Nichole Dobo


Nichole Dobo is a national writer for The Hechinger Report and she manages audience engagement strategy. She has more than 15 years of experience writing about teaching and learning. Her work has been published in publications including the Los Angeles Times, Newsweek, The Atlantic and Slate. She worked at local and statewide newspapers earlier in her career, earning a variety of awards. In 2021, she was awarded a Knight-Wallace Reporting Fellowship from the University of Michigan. Dobo, who grew up in rural western Pennsylvania, earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from The Pennsylvania State University.


Camilla Forte

Web & Photo Producer

Camilla Forte supports the Web Editor and Multimedia Editor with daily posting and photo selection. Prior to joining the Hechinger Report in 2021, she worked as the director of photography for the Columbia Chronicle and was a photographer for the New York Times Institute. She graduated from Columbia College Chicago with a bachelor’s degree in photojournalism.


Tara García Mathewson

Education Reporter & Languages Editor

Tara García Mathewson is a reporter covering inequality and innovation in K-12 education, nationally, and she oversees coverage for Hechinger en Español as the languages editor. She has been writing about education since 2012, first for the Daily Herald in Chicago’s northwest suburbs and then as a freelancer until she joined The Hechinger Report in 2017, where she has focused on the “Future of Learning” and educational inequalities. García Mathewson has won awards for beat reporting and her investigations into the educational technology industry, among other topics. Her work has appeared in a variety of regional and national news outlets, including The New York Times, the Washington Post, The Boston Globe Magazine and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Journalism from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.


Ariel Gilreath

Southern Education Reporter

Ariel Gilreath covers early education and K-12 schools in North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Arkansas, Florida, Kentucky, Louisiana, Tennessee and West Virginia. She most recently covered education and family issues in South Carolina with the Greenville News and the USA Today Network, where she received first place in education reporting from the South Carolina Press Association for her coverage in 2020. She has previously covered education for the Greenville Journal and the Index-Journal in South Carolina. Gilreath graduated from Winthrop University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism.


Barbara Kantrowitz

Contributing EDITOR

Barbara Kantrowitz is an award-winning magazine editor and writer. She worked at Newsweek for nearly 25 years in the magazine’s society section, where she wrote and edited dozens of cover stories on health, education, religion and women’s issues. Kantrowitz has also worked at People, The New York Times, The Philadelphia Inquirer, Newsday and The Hartford Courant, and has freelanced for many national publications. She is a graduate of Cornell University and Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism, where she has been an adjunct professor since 2009.


Meredith Kolodner

senior investigations reporter

Meredith Kolodner writes investigative articles and produces data analyses for higher education and K-12 stories. She previously covered schools for the New York Daily News and was an editor at Inside Schools and The Investigative Fund (now called Type Investigations). She also covered housing, schools, and local government for the Press of Atlantic City and The Chief-Leader newspaper. Her work has appeared in local and national news outlets, including NBC News, The New York Times and The Washington Post. She received a bachelor’s degree from Brown University and a master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.


Jackie Mader


Jackie Mader supervises all photo and multimedia use, covers early childhood education and writes the early ed newsletter. In her nine years at Hechinger, she has covered a range of topics including teacher preparation, special education and rural schools. She previously worked as a special education teacher in Charlotte, North Carolina, and trained new teachers in Mississippi. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Atlantic, USA Today, TIME and NBC News and has won several awards, including the Sigma Delta Chi Award from the Society of Professional Journalists, the Nellie Bly Award from The New York Press Club and a Front Page Award from The Newswomen’s Club of New York. In 2021, she was one of two American journalists chosen for the Dart Center for Journalism and Trauma’s Early Childhood Development Fellowship. She received a bachelor’s degree from Loyola Marymount University and a master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.


Jon Marcus

Higher Education Editor

Jon Marcus writes and edits stories about, and helps plan coverage of, higher education. A former magazine editor, he has written for The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Boston Globe, Wired, and the Times (U.K.) Higher Education magazine, among others. His work has been honored by the National Headliner Awards, Mirror Awards, National Awards for Education Reporting, City and Regional Magazine Association, Deadline Club of New York City and others. Marcus holds a bachelor’s degree from Bates College and a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University, attended Oxford University, and teaches journalism at Boston College and Northeastern University.


Davin McHenry


Davin McHenry is the web editor, responsible for overseeing The Hechinger Report website and supporting technical innovations that enhance the site. He has worked at Hechinger since the site’s founding in 2010. Before that, he worked at several newspapers in California, starting as a reporter and working his way up to web editor. McHenry is a graduate of the University of California, Santa Barbara.


Lawrie Mifflin


Lawrie Mifflin is responsible for overseeing all editorial aspects of The Hechinger Report’s journalism, with a focus on higher education coverage. She assigns and edits the stories of both staff and freelance reporters. Before joining Hechinger in 2015, she spent 30 years at The New York Times, as a reporter, editor and executive supervising new digital initiatives. During her time leading the fledgling television and video departments, The Times won three Alfred I. DuPont Silver Batons, two documentary Emmy Awards and a Pulitzer Prize for Public Service. Early in her career, Mifflin was a sportswriter. She graduated from Yale University with a degree in history and earned a master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.


Chelsea Miller

Development director

Chelsea Slosky Miller helps maintain Hechinger’s revenue streams and advance an overarching strategy for its long-term sustainability, including finding new sources of funding. She has more than 17 years of nonprofit fundraising experience, most recently at The New Press, a preeminent public interest book publisher. At New Press, Miller broadened fundraising operations, professionalized institutional communications, established its annual Social Justice Awards gala and expanded its board of directors. She previously enjoyed eight years at the Brennan Center for Justice, growing individual and foundation fundraising to help that distinguished think tank develop into a dominant public policy institute. Miller earned a bachelor’s degree in government from Smith College.


Lillian Mongeau

senior editor

Lillian Mongeau directs and contributes to The Hechinger Report’s Western coverage of K-12 and early education topics. She began developing a speciality in early childhood in 2012 and has written and spoken extensively about child care, early math and public preschool, among other topics. Mongeau was a finalist for a 2017 Livingston Award for her six-part series on the comparative lack of public preschool options in the United States. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, USA Today and The Idaho Statesman, among other publications. Mongeau is a graduate of Barnard College and of the journalism school at the University of California, Berkeley.


Neal Morton


Neal Morton covers K-12 schools in Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, New Mexico, Nevada, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming. He most recently worked with the Education Lab team at The Seattle Times, and previously covered education for The Las Vegas Review-Journal in Nevada and The (McAllen) Monitor in Texas. His work has appeared in High Country News, Huffington Post, PBS NewsHour, USA Today and local media outlets. Morton graduated from a Las Vegas high school before attending the University of Nevada, Reno, to major in journalism.


Andre Perry


Dr. Andre Perry, a contributing writer, is a David M. Rubenstein Fellow at The Brookings Institution. Perry was the founding dean of urban education at Davenport University in Grand Rapids, Mich. Previously, Perry worked in both academic and administrative capacities, most notably as CEO of the Capital One-University of New Orleans Charter Network, which consisted of four charter schools in New Orleans. A native of Pittsburgh, Perry earned his Ph.D. in education policy and leadership from the University of Maryland-College Park. Perry’s views have been featured on NBC, National Public Radio, Al Jazeera America, GOOD Magazine,, The New Republic and CNN. In 2011, UNO Press released his book, The Garden Path: The Miseducation of a City.


Caroline Preston


Caroline Preston is a senior editor who edits and writes stories on K-12 and higher education. She previously worked as a features editor with Al Jazeera America’s digital team and a senior reporter with The Chronicle of Philanthropy. Her writing has appeared in publications including NBC News, The New York Times, The Washington Post and, while stories she has edited or written have been honored by the Data Journalism Awards, the Education Writers Association, the Online News Association and others. Preston holds a bachelor’s degree in history from Brown University and a master’s degree from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism.


Javeria Salman


Javeria Salman is the digital news producer, and she reports and writes the Future of Learning newsletter. She covers K-12 education issues through the lens of innovation and technology, and helps manage social media. Before joining Hechinger in 2019, she worked as a local news reporter in eastern North Carolina. Her work for Hechinger has appeared in Telemundo, The Atlanta-Journal Constitution, The Christian Science Monitor and the Solutions Journalism Network. She attended community college in New Jersey before graduating with a bachelor’s degree from East Carolina University.


Christina Samuels

Senior Editor

Christina Samuels writes, assigns and edits stories about educational innovation, resilience and inequities, primarily in the South. Samuels previously worked at Education Week, where she covered topics such as educational equity, special education, early childhood education and school district governance. She also had stints as a staff writer at The Washington Post and The Miami Herald. In 2009, she was a Knight-Wallace Fellow at the University of Michigan, and in 2011 she participated in the Education Policy Fellowship Program in Washington, D.C. Samuels earned a bachelor’s degree in newspaper journalism from Florida A&M University in Tallahassee.


Olivia Sanchez

higher education reporter

Olivia Sanchez is a higher education reporter. She previously covered local and state government for the Capital Gazette newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland. Sanchez earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Portland and a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Oregon.


Salina Sanchez-Morroni

Senior Manager for Business and Administration

Salina Sanchez-Morroni is the senior manager for all of The Hechinger Report’s business and administration operations. She oversees managerial and financial accounting, and manages grant administration and organizational policy. She holds a bachelor’s degree in literature from Purchase College, SUNY, a master’s degree in English from New York University and has completed several certificate programs in bookkeeping, accounting and nonprofit management.


Anthony Session Jr.

Contracts and Program Associate

Anthony Session Jr. maintains the contracts, orders and expense reporting of The Hechinger Report’s writing team and freelancers. He obtained his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Monroe College.


Justin Snider


Justin Snider is a contributing editor at The Hechinger Report. He is an assistant dean at Columbia University, where he also teaches undergraduate writing. Previously, Snider taught high-school English and advised student publications in the United States, Europe and Asia. A California native, he holds degrees from Amherst College, the University of Chicago, the University of Vienna, Harvard University and Columbia University. Snider’s fanatical devotion to the written word generally and to English grammar specifically can be traced to the worst grade of his life — a check-minus — on his report card in second-grade Language Arts, taught by his own mother.