Through the national service program Report for America, Technical.ly is bringing on another full-time reporter in Philadelphia this June.
Sarah Huffman will be reporting on the Philly tech community with a particular focus on issues of equity and access in the city’s tech economy, answering questions like: How can Philly companies develop, attract and retain more technologists of color? How can the residents who live in some of its most challenged neighborhoods more directly benefit from the economic gains that come with tech-centric development? What resources are needed to support the next generation of Black and brown entrepreneurs?
Before joining Report For America and Technical.ly, Huffman was an intern and then freelance reporter for Norwood News covering local government and community events and organizations in the Bronx, specifically the northwest neighborhoods of the borough. She is a 2021 graduate of Fordham University where she earned bachelor’s degrees in journalism and communications. While at Fordham, Huffman worked as news section editor for the student newspaper, The Fordham Ram, covering COVID-19, administration changes, student life, and news about the surrounding Bronx neighborhood. She has also reported for HeyBoro, a news site in her hometown, Hillsborough New Jersey, covering local nonprofits and community events, and profiling community figures.
Huffman’s role is partly funded by Report for America, a program of the nonprofit The GroundTruth Project, as well as the Philadelphia-based Lenfest Institute for Journalism. Technical.ly has previously hired three reporters through this program, including Donte Kirby, who focuses much of his reporting on digital access in Baltimore, and Sophie Burkholder, who covers Pittsburgh’s own changing tech economy. Report for America asks each of its corps members to conduct a journalism-focused community service project during their tenure.
🎉INTRODUCING🎉 @Report4America’s 2022-23 corps members! More than 300 journalists hitting the ground in over 200 newsrooms. Diverse and public service-minded, they will contribute to our mission of rebuilding #LocalNews within their communities. More: https://t.co/AOqBXJAXpx pic.twitter.com/fmPf1bX5r5
— Report for America (@Report4America) May 10, 2022
“I was drawn to Report For America because of its emphasis on supporting local journalism and the importance of informing local communities,” Huffman said. “As a recent graduate, all of my professional experience thus far has been in local news, and the mission of connecting to community members and filling important coverage gaps really spoke to me. I’ve loved getting to know the Bronx community and I’m excited to get to know Philadelphia and the technology community. I look forward to digging into the technology beat at Technical.ly and learning more and more about the tech industry, specifically its relationship with Philadelphians.”
Huffman will join Technical.ly’s all-remote newsroom. In addition to Kirby and Burkholder, it’s currently made up of these fine folks: Managing Editor Julie Zeglen (hi), Editor Sameer Rao, Delaware-based reporter-at-large Holly Quinn, Philly-based senior reporter Paige Gross and DC-based reporter Michaela Althouse.
We look forward to bringing you more and deeper reporting on Philly’s changing communities, as well as solutions for making the benefits of the tech industry more accessible to all. If you’d like to pitch a story about Philly’s tech economy — or want to be among the first to be connected to Huffman when she starts in June — reach out to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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