Meet the analysts
Audience Growth Producer, The News & Observer
Laura Brache is an audience growth producer at The News & Observer in Raleigh, North Carolina. She previously served as a diverse communities reporter under Report for America, covering the effects of changing demographics on diverse communities across the region. She is a multilingual, multimedia journalist from North Carolina who was born in Massachusetts and raised in the Dominican Republic. She holds a master’s degree from Syracuse University’s Newhouse School of Public Communications.
Executive Director, Hola Carolina
For more than a decade, Adriana Chavela has served as a diversity consultant to business leaders. Her consulting assignments focus on entrepreneurship, Latinos in America, career advancement, and marketing diversity management. She has appeared on television and radio as a commentator and expert on Latino community and culture.
Assignment Editor, WRAL
Jamila Elder is an assignment editor at WRAL. She believes communities need representation in our newsrooms to be sure all are portrayed correctly and those necessary conversations are had regarding story selection and coverage.
Product Director, Gannett
Focused on the intersection of innovation/product/journalism, Tony Elkins serves as the Product Director for Gannett and on the steering and comms committees for News Product Alliance. He is a veteran journalist focused on innovation in storytelling, product, emerging tech and revenue. He is also a proud citizen of the Comanche Nation and strives to build a more inclusive environment for journalists of color.
Cierra Brown Hinton
Executive Director-Publisher, Scalawag
Cierra Hinton has an undying love and passion for the complicated South, which she brings to her work at Scalawag where she oversees our operations and big-picture plans. Cierra has found community across the South—from Tennessee to Mississippi—but currently resides in Durham, North Carolina.
Reporter, 88.5 WFDD/La Noticia / Report for America
Eileen Rodriguez covers COVID-19 recovery and the Latino community in Forsyth County, North Carolina for WFDD and La Noticia, a collaboration of a public radio station and the state’s biggest Spanish-language newsroom. Most recently, Rodriguez interned as an audio production assistant for the Financial Times, working on podcasts about global business and culture. Born and raised in the Dominican Republic, Rodriguez holds a bachelor’s degree from Baruch College in New York City, where she reported for Dollars & Sense, the online student publication. As a Walker Communications fellow for Audubon magazine, Rodriguez traveled across the U.S. to report stories that focused on environmental justice in marginalized communities. During this time, she also freelanced for Acuris, which specializes in news for financial professionals, and The New York Times, as a reporter, translator and transcriber.
Kaia Niambi Shivers
Clinical Assistant Professor, New York University
Dr. Kaia Niambi Shivers carries several decades of experience in media as an owner, journalist and scholar. She has a wealth of experience in DEI programming and pedagogy focusing on the global perspective. Currently, she teaches writing in Liberal Studies at New York University. She describes her work in three words—academia, artistry and activism—because these aspects of her life often intertwine. In 2017, Shivers launched Ark Republic, a member-fueled news media site that uses newsmakers, narrators and local event curators to cultivate rich and robust stories that explore issues and topics of the world. There, she serves as editor-in-chief and works with over 50 contributors around the world. Additionally, she’s worked multiple times as a visiting faculty or artist in residence at UNC-Wilmington, giving her working knowledge of NC.