The Central Valley Journalism Collaborative (CVJC) announced the hiring of its first two staff reporters, naming veteran journalists Brianna Vaccari and Nancy Moya to foundational roles that will boost the quality and depth of locally focused journalism for Merced and the surrounding region.
Vaccari and Moya joined the CVJC team this month and will work closely with Editor-in-Chief Michelle Morgante and CVJC partner newsrooms to develop coverage that will be distributed through the CVJC's own platform as well as those of its partners. As a nonprofit newsroom, CVJC's content will be made available for re-publication by newsrooms throughout the Valley and beyond.
"Brianna and Nancy bring a wealth of skills, experiences and insights to the CVJC team that will revitalize the quality of news being reported from Merced and nearby communities," Morgante said. "We are thrilled to have such high-caliber journalists taking on these essential first roles."
Vaccari, a native of Fresno County and graduate of Fresno State, was named the CVJC's first Accountability/Watchdog reporter, responsible for covering public institutions and government representatives to increase transparency and accountability on behalf of the public. She joins the CVJC from The Fresno Bee, where she was an investigative reporter covering City Hall and local government. Previously, Vaccari was part of the Merced Sun-Star, where she reported on county government, education, crime, agriculture and breaking news while also producing a weekly column addressing questions from community members.
Moya, a native of Texas with degrees from New Mexico State University and the University of Texas, El Paso, becomes the CVJC's first reporter covering Community Issues, a beat that will provide deep and solutions-oriented coverage of key topics affecting the quality of life for Valley residents. With 15 years of print and broadcast journalism experience, Moya's portfolio includes work for Univision, The Associated Press, El Diario de El Paso, Mexico's Norteamérica and Mundo Ejecutivo, Germany's Deutsche Welle and the Spanish-language El Ibérico of London, among others. Moya's language skills in English, Spanish, German and French, along with her diverse multimedia-production background, are certain to be essential assets for the CVJC newsroom.
"The work that the CVJC is doing to elevate local news coverage in the Merced region is both exciting and much needed," said Joe Moore, president and general manager of KVPR, a partner of the collaborative. "As the region's public radio station, KVPR is excited to partner with the CVJC to help expand our coverage in the North Valley. We welcome these new hires and look forward to working alongside them in the future."
Launched by the James B. McClatchy Foundation in 2020, the nonprofit Central Valley Journalism Collaborative project aims to counter the loss of local journalists amid the collapse of the traditional media industry. The collaborative seeks to activate a vibrant local free press by growing newsroom jobs, increasing the diversity of the reporting workforce, engaging the next generation of consumers, supporting local journalism ecosystem innovation, and expanding philanthropic investment in the Valley.
"CVJC is primed to cover important stories impacting the Valley's culturally rich communities. We aim to restore the sort of impactful journalistic coverage that has been decimated by severe cuts to local newsrooms. Brianna and Nancy offer hope to our Valley's voices," said Priscilla Enriquez, CEO of the James B. McClatchy Foundation and interim executive director of the CVJC.
For information visit: cvlocaljournalism.org.
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