Comings and goings: WBUR hires Victor Hernandez as CCO, John Ferrugia leaves RMPBS …

Print More

Victor Hernandez is the new CCO at WBUR in Boston.


He announced Friday his exit from Cascade Public Media in Seattle, where he had been executive editor since 2019. “I’ll be forever grateful to the CPM team and the local community for their unwavering support to help grow our public-interest newsroom and expand on our regional reporting mission,” Hernandez said on Twitter. “I’m both thrilled and humbled at this extraordinary leadership opportunity at one of the most acclaimed public media institutions in the US.”

Before joining Cascade, Hernandez directed media innovation for the social media software company Banjo. He previously directed U.S. newsgathering for CNN.

Mark Baumgarten, managing editor for Cascade’s news site Crosscut, will lead the newsroom during recruitment of the next executive editor, according to spokesperson Kelsey Tomascheski.

“Cascade Public Media would also like to acknowledge Victor Hernandez’s leadership in growing and developing our newsroom over the past two years. We wish him all the best with his new role in Boston,” Tomascheski said.

John Ferrugia is joining the Colorado News Collaborative, a nonprofit journalism organization launched last year, as special projects journalist, coach and trainer.


Ferrugia previously worked at Rocky Mountain PBS as anchor and managing editor for Insight with John Ferrugia, an investigative program, but left after the station decided to scale back production of Insight and shift its editorial focus from long-form journalism to news coverage of the pandemic.

“While this decision is disappointing for those of us who produce in-depth investigative and public policy content, it is an RMPBS decision based on present circumstance,” he said on Facebook when announcing his departure in December.

Before joining Rocky Mountain PBS, Ferrugia was an investigative reporter and anchor for KMGH, an ABC affiliate in Denver, for 24 years. COLab is led by investigative journalist Laura Frank, who was VP of journalism at Rocky Mountain PBS until last year, when she left to become COLab’s inaugural executive director.

Veteran reporter John Dillon will retire from Vermont Public Radio in May.


Since joining the public radio network in 2001, Dillon has worked as a reporter, news director and senior reporter and contributor to the New England News Collaborative. Earlier in his journalism career, Dillon was a staff writer for the Times Argus and the Rutland Herald and bureau chief for United Press International in Montpelier.

In other changes to VPR’s news staff, Josh Crane and Myra Flynn have been hired as engagement producers. They will work on Brave Little State, a podcast that crowdsources and answers questions from listeners.

Crane and Flynn

Crane is leaving WBUR, where he produces podcasts, including Endless Thread, a podcast discussing stories found on Reddit, and Season Ticket, a sports program co-produced by the station and the Boston Globe. Flynn is a former features reporter and correspondent for the Burlington Free Press. She most recently worked as a touring musician in Los Angeles before moving back to Vermont.



Kate Myers was appointed to a six-month term as interim COO for the Center for Public Integrity. She will lead the nonprofit newsroom during a search for a permanent CEO. Myers most recently worked as executive director of revenue and operations for First Look Media, the parent organization for The Intercept. She has also been VP of business development for Inside Higher Ed. She worked at NPR as director of business partnerships and strategy and as a product manager for social media.



Linda Midgett joined Louisiana Public Broadcasting in January as EP. Midgett succeeds Clay Fourrier, who retired from the state network in January. As an independent producer, Midgett has written, produced and directed programs for PBS, NBCUniversal, The History Channel, A&E, Discovery, National Geographic and LMN. Her documentary Same God aired on PBS stations in 2019 and 2020.

James Bennett II is joining GBH in Boston as a culture reporter and a contributing host for GBH’s classical and jazz music stations. “Bennett begins at GBH remotely on April 5 and plans to relocate from New York to Boston after Labor Day,” a news release said. Bennett is currently a staff writer for WQXR, the classical music station in New York City. He also contributed to New Sounds, a New York Public Radio program.


Jakob Lazzaro signed on as a diversity assistant for NPR. Lazzaro will manage the organization’s Source of the Week blog, which helps journalists find diverse sources. He first joined NPR as an intern last year, where he also worked on the blog. He has also been an intern for CalMatters and WESA in Pittsburgh.

Cydney Grannan will produce “Kojo In Our Community,” an event series created by WAMU in Washington, D.C. Grannan is a former producer for The Kojo Nnamdi Show, the station’s local talk show, which ceased production this month. Grannan also will continue to produce The Politics Hour, a weekly broadcast co-hosted by Kojo Nnamdi and Tom Sherwood, and will fill in for other roles at the station. Grannan joined WAMU in 2019 as an intern. She previously worked as a production assistant for Think Out Loud, produced by Oregon Public Broadcasting.


Vox hired Victoria Chamberlin as producer of its podcast Today, Explained. Chamberlin is among the 13 staffers at WAMU in Washington, D.C., whose contracts were not renewed early this year. Her last day with the station is Friday. Chamberlin previously worked as a producer for WAMU’s The Kojo Nnamdi Show and was a reporting fellow for Guns & America, a reporting project that ended last year. Before working in media, she served in the U.S. Army and was a professional oboist.


Valerie Crowder joined WFSU in Tallahassee, Fla., as an afternoon host and producer this week. She began working with the station as a freelance reporter last year. Crowder was previously a reporter for Public Radio East in New Bern, N.C., and held several editorial positions for WAER in Syracuse, N.Y.

Send news of “comings and goings” to [email protected]

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *