Arabella Saunders

Arabella Saunders covers economic development for New York Focus. Prior to joining the newsroom, Saunders’ freelance work appeared in VICE, HuffPost,, The Assembly NC and more. Her journalism career began in high school, where she served as editor-in-chief of the school’s newsmagazine. In 2018, she was a runner up for the National High School Journalist of the Year. In college, she worked for The Daily Tar Heel and also as a freelancer. She covered topics that ranged from Snapchat porn scams to the undercounting of COVID-19 deaths in North Carolina prisons. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism and media as well as English and comparative literature from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. A fun fact about her is that she has a Joan Didion-inspired tattoo.

Shannon Chaffers

Shannon Chaffers covers the epidemic of gun violence in New York's Black, immigrant, and under-resourced communities for The New York Amsterdam News’ Blacklight investigative unit. Prior to joining the Amsterdam News, Chaffers spent a year in Berlin, Germany as a Fulbright Young Professional Journalist. She reported on the history and legacy of Berlin’s Olympic Stadium while also interning at The Local Germany. Chaffers’ journalism career began in her hometown of Wellesley, Massachusetts, where she wrote for her high school newspaper, The Bradford. She then attended Princeton University, graduating in 2022. She majored in Sociology and minored in Journalism, African-American Studies, and German and also served as the Head Opinion Editor of The Daily Princetonian, the student newspaper. Away from journalism, Chaffers loves playing soccer and cheering on her favorite team, Arsenal FC.

New York Focus

New York Focus unmasks power in the Empire State. As the only nonprofit publication with an emphasis on state-level coverage, we produce deeply reported, investigative stories on the systems, decisions and actors that affect communities throughout New York. While most local accountability coverage is directed at New York City, we keep an eye on Albany — the notoriously corrupt and quietly impactful center of power throughout the state.

The New York Amsterdam News

The New York Amsterdam News was started in 1909 with a yearning to tell the stories of people of color in New York City, and has grown to become one of the most important Black newspapers in the country. It reported on the fight for equality during the Jim Crow era and the civil rights movement, and with a weekly paper and a robust news site, averaging 500,000 unique visitors a month, The New York Amsterdam News works to continue to magnify the issues that most deeply affect communities of color.

Emily Kenny

Emily Kenny is photojournalist for Spectrum News in Syracuse, New York covering farming and food production. In 2021, she graduated with her master’s degree in photojournalism from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications and, prior to that, she graduated from Buena Vista University as a dual major in digital media and psychology. Emily grew up on a farm in Schaller, Iowa which has led her to be interested in stories about farming and agriculture. She has worked on multiple long-term stories: her master’s project about women and their insecurities, and the other focusing on her family’s farm. Emily resides in Syracuse, New York with her partner, Dan, and their two rescue dogs, Chanel and Athena

Abigail Nehring

Abigail Nehring covers commercial and residential real estate for The Riverdale Press, a news site and weekly paper in the northwest section of the Bronx, a borough of New York City. Previously, she reported on health and education for The New Bedford Light in her home state of Massachusetts. Nehring won a New York Press Club Award for her reporting in City Limits on an East Village landlord caught on tape illegally harassing tenants and, along with Julia Angwin, was a finalist for the John Jay/H.F. Guggenheim Prize for Excellence in Criminal Justice Reporting for their story on police use of stun grenades, known as flash-bangs, published by Propublica and The Atlantic. She holds a Master of Fine Arts in nonfiction writing from Columbia University and has also worked as a writing teacher, fact-checked magazine stories, and tended numerous varieties of thyme in a greenhouse.

Amir Khafagy

Amir Khafagy reports for Documented, a nonprofit news site that focuses on New York City’s immigrant communities. His beat explores the intersections of labor, race, class, immigration and urban policy. Khafagy’s writing has been featured in The Guardian, Vice, The New Republic, Bloomberg and Prism, among others, and he is the recipient of numerous honors, including the Ida B. Wells Fellowship and The International Center for Journalists COVID-19 Reporting Award. Khafagy holds a master’s degree in urban affairs from Queens College. A lifelong New Yorker, he hails from Jackson Heights, Queens. As a performer, Khafagy has appeared in Ping Chong + Company's “Beyond Sacred: Voices of Muslim Identity” and in “Gun Country,” a Houses on the Moon Theatre Company production.

Gabriel Poblete

Gabriel Poblete covers New York state agencies for The City, a nonprofit digital news outlet dedicated to accountability reporting. Previously, he was the city reporter for Miami Today, reported on education in New Mexico for the Las Vegas Optic, was a junior reporter at The Real Deal, and interned at Crain’s and City & State. Poblete was born in Miami and earned a master’s degree at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism at the City University of New York.

Leonardo March

Leonardo March is a multimedia journalist for The Haitian Times, a news outlet based in Brooklyn, New York. He covers the Haitian diaspora in New York City and beyond, through videos, photos, graphics and words. Previously, March contributed to The Haitian Times, reporting on Haitian asylum seekers in Del Rio, Texas and in Tapachula, Mexico. Holding a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez Campus, he is interested in working on stories about how migrants and workers resist and transform the economic and political forces that often are organized against them.

Lucy Grindon

Lucy Grindon reports on low-income rural communities for North Country Public Radio in northern New York state. A recent graduate of Columbia University, she holds a master’s degree from the School of Journalism, where she covered education for Uptown Radio, documented responses to the war in Ukraine at Ukrainian Orthodox churches, and produced written and audio stories on local news, music and food. Grindon has worked for Commonweal magazine and her reporting for the National Catholic Reporter won a Catholic Press Award for best reporting of social justice issues. At Middlebury College, she studied history and Arabic, reported for The Middlebury Campus and was an opinion editor, and hosted two radio shows.