The 2011 Journalism Fellows

NATALIA A. BONILLA BERRIOS will graduate this month from the University of Puerto Rico, with a bachelor of arts degree in Information and Journalism. She is editor of Revista Latitudes, a non-profit online magazine she founded to allow journalism students to cover global issues. A 2011 fellow New York Times Student Journalism Institute in Miami, she covered the covered the Fifth Annual World Youth Congress last year in Istanbul.

GRAHAM BREWER is a graduate student studying journalism at the University of Oklahoma. Brewer has been working as a freelance public radio producer and reporter for the past three years. He has covered on a variety of issues, from homelessness to immigration. Brewer is a native of Oklahoma and a member of the Cherokee tribe.

ARCYNTA ALI CHILDS is a graduate of Spelman College and New York University, where she majored in journalism and Latin American and Caribbean studies. Childs was awarded journalism fellowships from The New York Times Student Journalism Institute, the National Press Foundation, The Poynter Institute and The Village Voice. She also has worked at Ms. Magazine, O and Smithsonian magazine. Childs has visited more than 10 countries on five continents, most recently the Czech Republic where she reported on domestic violence.

TAMETRIA CONNER is a news reporter for WICS-TV in Springfield, IL. She recently earned a Master of Arts in Public Affairs at the University of Illinois at Springfield, where she speclalized in political reporting. She is a native of Hattiesburg, Miss., and has worked at WJMG-FM in Hattiesburg, WTOK-TV in Meridian, Miss. and Viking Vision Newschannel 55 on campus, where she produced a 30-minute documentary “The Truth Behind HIV/AIDS in Rome, Ga.”

LAURA FIGUEROA is a general assignment reporter for The Miami Herald, where she has covered the Gulf Coast oil spill. She formerly covered southwest Florida’s migrant farm worker community for The Bradenton Herald She has received awards from the Florida Press Club, the Florida Society of Newspaper Editors and the Tampa Bay Association of Black Journalists. Figueroa studied journalism at the University of Florida.

EUNA LHEE is a reporter for Florida Public Radio, where she covers medical research and biotechnology. Lhee formerly worked at the Media Institute of Southern Africa in Gaborone, Botswana, where she worked with the Hearts & Minds project, which aims to improve the quantity, quality and scope of HIV and AIDS reporting in Africa. A Bloomberg scholar, Euna has earned master’s degrees from Columbia University and Sciences Po Paris.

AARON MORRISON is a general assignment reporter at the Daily Record in northern New Jersey. A California native, Morrison was a 2009 intern at the Associated Press, where he covered the legislature in the AP’s New Jersey Statehouse bureau. He received his B.A. in journalism with an emphasis in online journalism from San Francisco State University in 2009.

CARLA AZUCENA PINEDA is a staff writer for the Daily Commerce, a Los Angeles-based regional business publication. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in communications from California State Polytechnic University-Pomona, and she has been an AIDS Walk-Los Angeles volunteer since high school.

VENURI SIRIWARDANE is a freelance journalist who formerly worked as a business reporter for The Star-Ledger, New Jersey’s largest newspaper. She also has covered business and entrepreneurship for Inc. magazine. This fall, she will study health and health policy as part of his master’s studies at the London School of Economics.

AMY STRETTEN is a graduate student in international reporting at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. She is a member of the Chickahominy Tribe and is creator of the blog She received her bachelor of arts in philosophy and Spanish from Mount Holyoke College, while she was an intern for the Department of Defense. This summer, she will be an intern for the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network in Winnipeg, Canada.

SOPHIA TEWA is a Copy Editor for Dateline, the Overseas Press Club’s magazine. She received her Bachelor and Master of Arts degrees in Journalism from Lehman College, City University of New York.

is a University of Southern California broadcast journalism student, concentrating in public health. She has covered health news for KCBS and has been an intern at KNBC, KABC and Entertainment Tonight. Natasha also has been a reporter at Annenberg TV News, and, for two years, she was voted Best Host of “Trojan Vision,”USC’s student network.


John Yearwood, World Editor, The Miami Herald:
supervises reporters and editors covering national and international news with particular emphasis on Latin America and the Caribbean. Yearwood previously was National/International Editor and Assistant City Editor for Government and Politics at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram; founding publisher/editor of IBIS, a Caribbean lifestyle magazine based in Trinidad; and a writer at The Dallas Morning News.


Rochelle Riley, Columnist, Detroit Free Press: ROCHELLE’s commentary appears three times a week. Her work on the text message scandal involving Detroit’s former mayor were part of the entry that won the 2009 Pulitzer Prize. Her debut column in the (Louisville, Ky.) Courier-Journal helped spur an $80 million campaign to build the Muhammad Ali Center. She has worked at The Washington Post and The Dallas Morning – and been a young journalists project mentor 22 times for NABJ, APME and ASNE.


Monica Rhor, Freelance writer and Teacher: MONICA is a Houston-based freelance writer and teacher, who writes for the Associated Press, Latina magazine and The Houston Chronicle. She also teaches journalism and honors English at a Houston high school. Rhor has covered education, immigration, urban affairs and criminal justice as a staff writer at The Associated Press, The Boston Globe, the Miami Herald, the Philadelphia Inquirer and the Orange County Register.


Allison Davis, Adjunct Professor: CUNY: ALLISON has been an award-winning reporter, producer, executive producer, and creative development vice-president at NBC News and CBS’s syndication unit. She also helped launch MSNBC and and is credited for leading the team that produced the first original journalism site on the Internet. Davis has been an adjunct professor at Howard University, CCNY, and she earned her bachelor of science degree in journalism from Boston University.


Michael Bolden, Development and Transportation Editor;  The Washington Post: MICHAEL directed award-winning coverage of Washington’s historic 2010 blizzards. As an editor with the Washington Post Magazine, he helped produce stories written by humorist Gene Weingarten that won the 2008 and 2010 Pulitzer Prizes for feature writing. Bolden has been a features and production editor at The Miami Herald and a reporter at The Northwest Florida Daily News.


Lisa Gibson, Copy/Layout Editor, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution: LISA edits articles for the Living, Business, Editorial, News and Sports sections. Gibson also designs inside pages for the daily Living section and edits some wire stories. Gibson has volunteered with the NABJ Student Multimedia Project for more than 10 years. A Grambling State University graduate, Lisa has worked at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, The Detroit News and the Detroit Free Press.


Logan Coles, Independent Filmmaker and TV Producer, New York: LOGAN is the Founder and President of the NC-based multimedia consulting and production company Sea Change Entertainment, LLC. Sea Change has produced creative commercial marketing campaigns and long form show content for clients such as Russell Simmons’ Global, BET and the American Black Film Festival. Logan is a cum laude graduate of The John H. Johnson School of Communications at Howard University in Washington, DC.

Carl Phillipe Juste, Photographer, Miami Herald: CARL has been a photographer at the Herald since 1991. He has carried out foreign assignments from Iraq to Pakistan and has contributed to three documentary projects for the Historical Museum of Southern Florida. A University of Miami graduate, Juste has received numerous awards for his work, including the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award. His work also has been exhibited in various galleries in Cuba, Dominican Republic and United States.


CECILIA ALVEAR, Retired Television Producer, Santa Monica, CA: CECILIA, a former president of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, was a field producer with NBC Network News for 25 years until 2007. She was the network’s Mexico City Bureau Chief from 1982 until 1984 and senior producer for Latin America, until 1989. In 1989 she was assigned to the West Coast bureau in Burbank, CA., where she produced stories on the wars in El Salvador and Nicaragua in the 1980s, the Mexico City earthquake in 1985.

DEIRDRE M. CHILDRESS, Entertainment Editor, The Philadelphia Inquirer: DEIRDRE,
Vice president-Print of the National Association of Black Journalists, previously worked at The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Daily News, United Press International and the Syracuse Post-Standard. She earned a bachelor’s degree in English and Fine Arts from Colgate University. She has made appearances on FOX and NBC, and she was a regular contributor to NPR’s “News and Notes.”

THALIF DEAN, UN Bureau Chief and Regional Director, Inter Press Service (IPS) News Agency: THALIF is the U.N. bureau chief of the Inter Press Service (IPS) news agency and editor-in-chief of the IPS UN Journal Terra Viva.). He previously was deputy news editor of the Sri Lanka Daily News and a senior editorial writer on the Hong Kong Standard. A former Information Officer at the U.N. Secretariat, Thalif has a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University in New York.



YONETTE JOSEPH, The New York Times/New York


ONICA N. MAKWAKWA, Executive Director, UNITY: Journalists of Color, Inc. Washington, D.C.: ONICA oversees management of UNITY’s programs to advance diversity in America’s newsrooms and coverage of America’s communities. She raised millions of dollars while working in development at the National Low Income Housing Coalition, the Black Women’s Health Imperative (formerly known as the National Black Women’s Health Project), and the national YWCA USA . She is a University of Iowa graduate and Soweto, South Africa native.