The people listed below have put significant time into coordinating Journalists in Classrooms. Journalists who visited classrooms as volunteers include Capital Public Radio reporter Sammy Caiola, Sacramento Business Journal reporter Felicia Alvarez, freelance science journalist Emily Underwood, ABC 10 anchor Keristen Holmes, CALmatters reporter Rachel Becker, and Sacramento News & Review editor Raheem Hosseini.

Tess Townsend
Freelance Journalist
Founding Coordinator

Tess Townsend is a freelance journalist covering climate change and emergency preparedness. Prior to freelancing, she held staff writing roles at Inc., Recode and Connecticut regional newspaper The Day. At Inc., she reported on the proliferation of disinformation online during the 2016 presidential election, uncovering the identity of the secretive creator of one of the most prolific U.S. politics-centric fake news websites at that time. The site’s creator was also known in Romania for spreading disinformation to readers there. View her clips at thisisjustatess.com

Vanessa Marrero
Director of College and Career Readiness
Sacramento City Unified School District

Vanessa D. Marrero is a state-wide dual enrollment coach with the California Coalition of Early and Middle Colleges, oversees dual enrollment and career education for a school district in Sacramento, and holds membership in leadership roles in organizations promoting equity in education such as Alliance for Boys and Men of Color Education Workgroup. She holds a Masters of Social Work from Stony Brook University. She uses her work designing and implementing dual enrollment programs to propel students past barriers to college and career by meeting their educational, emotional and life goals.

Allison Joy
Editor in Chief
Comstock’s magazine

Allison Joy is editor at large and former editor in chief of Comstock’s magazine. She has 15 years experience in writing, editing and communications with an expertise in community engagement, online distribution and multi-platform storytelling. Under her leadership, Comstock’s has been recognized for its insightful feature reporting, print design and online presence. Prior to her work at Comstock’s, Allison served as associate editor for The Sacramento Press, a cutting-edge hyperlocal news site that incorporated professional reporting with citizen journalism. 

Stu VanAirsdale
Professional Journalist in Residence
Sacramento State University

Stu VanAirsdale is Professional Journalist in Residence at Sacramento State University, where he teaches journalism and advises The State Hornet student media organization. He is a former senior editor at Sactown Magazine, and his work has appeared in The New York Times, Slate, Bloomberg Businessweek, Esquire, VanityFair.com, and numerous other national publications. His work is collected at stvanairsdale.com

Stephanie Hays
Lead Designer
Sacramento Business Journal

Stephanie Hays is the lead designer for the Sacramento Business Journal where she lays out the newspaper and makes graphics for their website. In her free time, you can find her taking photos, doodling or fiddling around with code. She’s passionate about the intersection of news and design and has always harbored an enthusiasm for education. Stephanie designed JiC’s logos and website.

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