Comings and goings: WLRN selects news staffers, Vermont Public hires for digital team …

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WLRN in Miami announced several promotions and hires.


Caitie Muñoz, who had served as interim managing editor since July, was appointed director of daily news and original live programming. Muñoz, a former WLRN intern, rejoined the station in 2017 as Broward County bureau reporter and was also a lead producer. Going forward, she will oversee newscasts and act as EP of the public affairs programs Sundial, South Florida Roundup and Florida Roundup, a co-production with WJCT in Jacksonville. Danny Rivero, an investigative reporter, will join WJCT’s Melissa Ross as co-host of the Florida Roundup.


Jessica Bakeman stepped up to director of enterprise journalism. Bakeman joined the station in 2017 as an education reporter and producer and most recently worked as senior editor for news. She will work with Sergio Bustos, the VP of news hired last year, to oversee the station’s first investigations team.


Michael Majchrowicz was hired as WLRN’s first breaking news editor. He most recently worked as a freelance reporter, editor and producer. Before that, he was a staff writer for the Miami New Times and a criminal justice/public safety reporter for The Post and Courier in Charleston, S.C.

Palm Beach County reporter Wilkine Brutus will continue to host South Florida Roundup, alternating weekly with new co-host Tim Padgett, Americas editor.

Vermont Public announced two hires.

Dougherty and McCullum

Michael Dougherty joined as director of digital strategy. He most recently worked as a senior editor at VTDigger, leading the politics team. He joined the publication in 2017 as a community editor and later worked as digital editor.

April McCullum was hired as a digital editor. McCullum most recently worked for the Burlington Free Press, first as a reporter and later as digital innovation editor.



William Hayes, director of engineering for Iowa PBS, is retiring from the state network to be a consultant on NextGen TV. Hayes joined the station in 1999. He previously led engineering teams for commercial stations in Honolulu; Albuquerque, N.M.; Huntington, W.V.; Lebanon, Ore.; and several cities in California. “The 24 years I have spent at Iowa PBS have been wonderful. Helping the station through the transition to digital and plan for the future has been some of the most challenging and enjoyable experiences of my career,” Hayes said in a staff memo. “Working here has been an honor, and while I will be sad to leave, I am looking forward to continuing my work in future broadcast planning on the national level.”



Colin Campbell joined WUNC in Chapel Hill, N.C., as capitol bureau chief. He succeeds Jeff Tiberii, who became co-host of a new public affairs program for the station last year. Campbell most recently worked as an associate editor for Business North Carolina magazine. He has also been a political reporter for the News & Observer in Raleigh. “I’ve been listening to public radio news since I was a teenager, so I’m thrilled to bring my coverage of North Carolina politics and government to WUNC,” Campbell said in a news release. “Jeff Tiberii has set a high standard for news stories and podcasts in this role, and I’m looking forward to continuing that tradition.”


Claire Trageser was promoted to deputy investigative and digital training editor for KPBS in San Diego. “I’ll be working with our I-Team and also helping other reporters in the newsroom on cool projects,” Trageser said on Twitter. She joined the station in 2012 as a web producer and later worked as multimedia enterprise reporter and investigative reporter.


Nick Swartsell became a full-time general assignment reporter for WVXU in Cincinnati. Swartsell joined the station in 2020 and most recently split his time as a part-time reporter and assistant producer for Cincinnati Edition. In addition, the station hired Assia Johnson as an associate producer for Cincinnati Edition. She previously worked as a public relations and social media coordinator for the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center.



Halima Gikandi, an Africa correspondent based in Nairobi for The World, was selected for the Investigative Reporters & Editors’ 2023 Journalist of Color Investigative Reporting Fellowship. Gikandi’s project for the yearlong fellowship “will investigate allegations that certain U.S. citizens are taking advantage of Uganda’s weak social and legal protections to exploit minors,” according to a news release. Gikandi joined The World in 2019. She has previously been a freelancer for NPR, a producer for WBUR in Boston and a Gwen Ifill fellow for WETA in Washington, D.C.

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