Ricky Rodas reports for The Oaklandside, where he focuses on immigrant-owned and operated businesses in Oakland, California. The beat covers economic and neighborhood change, barriers to entry, minimum wage struggles and much more. Rodas is a Los Angeles native who grew up in the San Gabriel Valley to Salvadorean parents, studied at California State University-L.A. and was the first investigative reporter for his campus newspaper, The University Times. During his time at the University of California-Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism, Rodas was awarded Radio Television and Digital News Association’s (RTDNA) Pete Wilson Scholarship and a Jonathan Rodgers Fellowship. He also worked as a research assistant for the Investigative Reporting Program (IRP) at Berkeley where he was part of investigations into L.A.’s s child welfare system and the national sex offender registry. Through years of listening, determination and speech therapy, he overcame a childhood stutter. A multimedia journalist, he concentrated in audio at Berkeley and has experience in radio hosting, producing audio reports, working as a studio engineer, writing breaking news and investigative reporting.
Berkeleyside is a 10-year-old city news site that provides granular coverage of Berkeley, CA, a high-profile city in the San Francisco Bay Area. Our strength is in breaking news and in digging in deep on important issues of accountability. We have been successful in creating a loyal and highly engaged community of readers, and are seen as a model for digital local news nationally. We have recently converted to nonprofit status in order to create mission-driven newsrooms in more cities. Our first launch, in spring 2020, is in neighboring Oakland, a city of 420,000 in the throes of transformation.
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