Carolina Public Press – headquarters
(mailing) PO Box 17595, Asheville, NC 28816
(physical) 4A Herman Avenue Extension, Asheville, NC 28803
Main phone: 828-774-5290
Certain staff and contributors are located across North Carolina.
Staff and Contributors
Stephanie Carson, News and Community Partnership Manager
Direct phone: 828-490-4129
Stephanie Carson has two decades of journalism experience in print, radio and television and as a special projects producer, an editorial director and field producer for outlets including CBS News, Bloomberg Financial Television and the Public News Service. Her work has earned her two Mid-Atlantic Emmys and an Edward R. Murrow Award for Excellence in Journalism. In addition to her journalism work, Stephanie co-owns an event company where she manages events, secures strategic partnerships and maintains community and business relationships. Stephanie lives in Buncombe County and oversees news and community partnerships for Carolina Public Press across North Carolina.
Tara George, Administrator
Direct phone: 828-490-4131
Tara George graduated with honors from San Diego State University with a bachelor’s degree in applied design. A desire to be more involved and make a difference in the community brought her to the nonprofit world, where she has worked in development, project and office management for organizations including Land of Sky Regional Council and OnTrack Financial Education and Counseling. Tara lives in Buncombe County and assists with community engagement planning and office and financial systems for Carolina Public Press.
Kate Martin, Investigative Reporter
Direct phone: 919-569-5410
Kate Martin has been a journalist for more than 15 years covering topics including education, government and business. Her passion for data and open records has led her to expose a school district’s misspending of taxpayer funds and pursue records governments wanted to keep hidden. She joins Carolina Public Press after five years at The News Tribune in Tacoma, Wash., where she reported on the police department’s use of mass cell phone surveillance equipment without explaining the devices to judges. In 2011, while working with the Skagit Valley Herald, she earned a Rural Computer Assisted Reporting fellowship with Investigative Reporters and Editors. Her work has led to the creation of three state laws and the resignation of three elected officials. Kate lives in Durham County and is the lead investigative reporter for Carolina Public Press, following and pursuing stories across the entire state.
Angie Newsome, Founder and Executive Director
Direct phone: 828-348-0808
Angie Newsome founded Carolina Public Press, which launched in March 2011. A North Carolina native with a master’s degree in journalism from UNC Chapel Hill, Angie has more than 15 years of experience in daily, online and magazine journalism. She has won numerous awards, including for reporting on the international banking interests of a North Carolina congressman and for following the closure of the nation’s last Levis sewing plant. After launching Carolina Public Press, she was named one of four New Media Women Entrepreneurs in the country by the McCormick Foundation in 2012. Carolina Public Press has gone on to be a featured media startup by PBS MediaShift and J-Lab and to earn numerous awards, including for its environmental, mental health and investigative reporting and for general excellence among North Carolina’s online news organizations. Angie lives in Buncombe County and oversees efforts to improve and measure the sustainability, reach and impact of Carolina Public Press and its work across North Carolina.
Kelly Christianson Shanafelt, Development Director
Direct phone: 828-490-4130
Kelly Christianson Shanafelt has more than 18 years of experience in development at nonprofit and academic institutions, including in individual and major gift solicitation and stewardship, annual fund management, corporate and sponsorship solicitation, community engagement and donor communications. Most recently, she was the executive director of the Friends of the WNC Nature Center, where she oversaw growth in overall annual revenue with increases in individual donations and annual corporate sponsorships and the implementation of an annual grant program. Kelly lives in Buncombe County and oversees donor and sponsorship relationships for Carolina Public Press across the state.
Frank Taylor, Managing Editor
Direct phone: 828-490-4126
Frank Taylor worked in the news industry for more than 20 years before joining Carolina Public Press in October 2015, including as an editorial writer and columnist for The Fayetteville Observer and managing editor of The Lincoln Times-News. He and a colleague won first in investigative reporting in North Carolina among online news organizations from the N.C. Press Association for the Carolina Public Press Questionable Care series investigating the state’s oversight of adult care homes. Frank received his master’s degree in journalism from UNC Chapel Hill and is currently pursuing a master’s degree in history from Western Carolina University. Frank lives in Buncombe County and oversees and edits the journalism produced by Carolina Public Press and serving all North Carolinians.
Calvin L. Adkins, Photographer
Calvin L. Adkins is a photographer who started his career as a photo stringer for The Daily Southerner in 1989. He went on to work as a photographer and cops reporter at the newspaper and was its editor until it closed in 2014. Calvin was born in Princeville, N.C., the oldest town in the United States chartered by African Americans. He still lives in Princeville, in Edgecombe County, today.
Rebecca Andrews, Reporter
Rebecca Andrews graduated from UNC Asheville with a degree in mass communication and a minor in sociology. She spent two and a half years working for her college newspaper, The Blue Banner, as a reporter and, for the last year, as copy desk chief. Rebecca is originally from Durham and now lives in Buncombe County.
Jodie Castellani, Photographer
Jodie Castellani is an award-winning freelance photographer and writer whose publications include National Geographic, HuffPost, Creative Loafing, Social Documentary Network, CNN and Taste of the South. Her focus is on news and documentary photography. Jodie is a licensed psychologist and lives in Cabarrus County.
Maria Grandy, Reporter
Maria D. Grandy studied Communications at Elon University and has gained 15 years experience in journalism at papers in South Carolina and North Carolina. Her career started at her hometown paper in Windsor with a story on the 911 attacks. That sparked her love for telling stories of others, whether it’s praising a local unknown hero, keeping the community informed of what their officials are doing or letting parents know what is going on after the school bells ring. Maria lives in Bertie County.
Melissa Sue Gerrits, Photographer
Melissa Sue Gerrits is a photographer with a degree in photojournalism from Randolph Community College and has worked in South Dakota, Arkansas and North Carolina. She is currently a photojournalist for The Fayetteville Observer. Melissa lives in Cumberland County.
Jack Igelman, Lead Environment Reporter
Jack Igelman is a reporter with a master’s degree from Montana State University, where he studied natural resource economics. His main interest is in conservation and environmental stories that on the people, places and institutions involved with managing the state’s natural resources. Co-author of Trekking the Southern Appalachians and currently teaching college-level economics, Jack’s reporting has appeared in dozens of local, regional and national publications. Jack lives in Buncombe County.
Peter Kent, Audio Producer and Host of The Kicker
Peter Kent is a writer and audio producer with 20 years of journalism experience. Peter worked for the Atlanta Journal Constitution, reporting on suburban development, politics and more. Most recently, he served as a public information officer for Clemson University and produced educational radio shows and audio profiles. Peter has a master’s degree from Georgia State University and attended Duke University Center for Documentary Studies programs for community-based audio and video stories. Peter lives in Buncombe County.
Karrigan Monk, Reporter
Karrigan Monk is a reporter with a bachelor’s degree in mass communications from UNC Asheville. She spent two years working for her college newspaper, The Blue Banner, eventually serving as the paper’s editor-in-chief. Karrigan grew up in Gaston County and now lives in Buncombe County.
Colby Rabon, Photographer
Colby Rabon is a freelance photographer with a bachelor’s degree in technical photography from Appalachian State University. Colby currently shoots a range of material from documentary projects to news, sports, portraiture and more and has had work featured in local and national publications. Colby lives in Buncombe County.
Matt Rose, Photographer
Matt Rose is a photojournalist, formerly with The Times-Picayune, of New Orleans, with more than 20 years of photography experience. During his successful and award-winning career, he has photographed, among other things, U.S. presidents, Super Bowls, floods and Mardi Gras. Rose has won numerous Associated Press and National Press Photographers Association photography awards and shares a staff Pulitzer Prize for Hurricane Katrina coverage. Matt lives in Buncombe County.
Kirk Ross, Capital Bureau Chief
Based in Chapel Hill, Kirk Ross is a longtime North Carolina journalist and Carolina Public Press’s lead journalist reporting on the N.C. General Assembly. His reporting and opinion writing has appeared in multiple publications, including the News & Observer and The Washington Post. Kirk lives in Orange County.
Mariano Santillan, Illustrator
Mariano Santillan is currently the web designer and illustrator for the USASOC History Office on Fort Bragg. Before that position, he spent over a decade as the graphics editor and illustrator for The Fayetteville Observer. Some of his freelance clients include The Washington Post, The U.S. Army and Cricket Magazine. Mariano lives in Cumberland County.
Imari Scarbrough, Reporter
Imari Scarbrough is a freelance journalist with a bachelor’s degree in communications and minors in English and music from Montreat College. She worked as a staff writer at The Anson Record for five years, earning five awards from the N.C. Press Association and covering crime, politics, education, local government and more. Imari lives in Stanly County.
Carolina Public Press Board of Directors
Scott Barnwell, President
Patrick Doran, Vice President
Frank Goldsmith, Secretary
Bob Lewis, Treasurer
Carolina Public Press is a member of the Institute for Nonprofit News, Local Independent Online News Publishers and the N.C. Press Association. Certain staff members and contributors are members of Investigative Reporters and Editors and the Society of Environmental Journalists.