ASHLAND — Our staff at Source Media Properties is growing again, as we welcome one new and one familiar face to our teams at Ashland Source and Knox Pages.
Emma Davis comes to the Source through the Report for America program and will cover Ashland and Knox counties. Dillon Carr will return to the Source from Pittsburgh as the new Ashland Source reporter, replacing Tracy Leturgey.
Carr will start his new position with Ashland Source on May 17; Davis will join the team on June 1.
"It's tough losing someone with Tracy's skills and work ethic, but when the opportunity to be an editor in her home state knocked she had to fly and we understand that," Phillips said. "We're extremely happy to have Dillon rejoining us. He knows the community, has a creative streak, and is very popular with our team.
"It's exciting to have Emma join us, too. She's got the potential, energy and ability to do an outstanding job in our region."
Our Report for America position is fully funded for two years thanks to grants from of the Ashland County Community Foundation (ACCF) and The Innovation Fund, a donor advised fund established by Scott Conery and held at ACCF, as well as gifts from Bill and Polly Chandler and a benefactor in Knox County who has chosen to remain anonymous.
Ashland County Community Foundation president and CEO Jim Cutright said the foundation is pleased to support the RFA position.
"Journalism looks a little different than it used to. It requires you to be more flexible and resilient in how you're funded," Cutright said.
"This isn’t a traditional, reactive grant -- it’s proactive, or what we like to call strategic grant making," he added. "It’s exciting for us. Instead of always responding…we can look around and find projects and initiatives that we can support."
Report for America (RFA), an initiative of The GroundTruth Project, is a two-year program that provides several benefits to its corps members, including ongoing training and mentorship by leading journalists, peer networking, and memberships to select professional organizations.
The Source is one of 64 new local news organizations joining RFA as host newsroom partners this year, and the only new partner located in the state of Ohio.
“With the local news system shrinking, it’s important that we both put more and more reporters in the field — and that we help newsrooms that are working toward becoming more sustainable, and more grounded in the community,” said Steve Waldman, president and co-founder of Report for America.
Davis is one of 300 journalists placed through the RFA program this year. She will cover health, education, local government and public policy for Richland Source's sister publications, Ashland Source and Knox Pages.
Davis comes to us from Sayville, New York, a small hamlet with a population of approximately 16,000. She earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism and leadership studies from the University of Richmond in 2021, where she was managing editor of The Collegian.
During Davis’ tenure at The Collegian, she and her colleagues received several Associated Collegiate Press awards, including top honors for their website and for best news/feature presentation for a series about memorialization on Richmond’s campus. The series was part of her work as a fellow for the Poynter Institute’s College Media Project, in which Davis investigated a burial ground of enslaved people on her university’s campus.
A multimedia journalist, Davis has interned twice with PBS’ Frontline and was a staff writer for the Capital News Service. Her work has also been published by the Virginia Center for Investigative Journalism and the Henrico Citizen.
"I am looking forward to many aspects of my Richland Source position, including meeting my colleagues, moving to a new place and being a part of a local organization that is on the cutting edge of digital journalism," Davis said.
"But I am most looking forward to getting to know the communities I will be covering," she added. "I want to know what our communities' concerns, joys and hopes are so that I can best reflect the full scope of Ashland and Knox counties in my reporting."
Ontario graduate Carr left Richland Source for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review in 2017 after nearly four years with our company. He will be moving back to Mansfield from the Pittsburgh metropolitan area.
"I'm really looking forward to working with a familiar crew that genuinely cares for all people," Carr said. "The Source is not like other companies; we're not cogs in a machine here. Instead, we're individuals with recognized skill sets. That makes a huge difference in what you, the reader, sees on our site -- we care about what you consume because we are cared for.
"My goal is to extend that same care to you by exemplifying honesty, accuracy and reliability in my work," he said. "Please reach out. I look forward to meeting you and working together."