Today, inewsource is excited to announce the appointment of veteran journalist and editor Mark J. Rochester as our Managing Editor, effective April 1.
Rochester has spearheaded high-impact, accountability reporting in newsrooms from New York to California. His work has inspired federal and state legislation, Congressional hearings, regulatory reviews, criminal prosecutions and the exposure of corporate misconduct. Rochester most recently served as Editor-in-Chief at Type Investigations, headquartered in Manhattan.
“We are thrilled to welcome Mark to the senior leadership team at inewsource,” said CEO/Editor Lorie Hearn. “Mark has a reputation for guiding and producing high quality journalism that creates positive change. We look forward to working with him on an ever more ambitious agenda for serving — and listening to — the diverse communities in the San Diego and Imperial County region.”
inewsource was founded in 2009 amid the Great Recession, when legacy media was contracting, leaving vast gaps in watchdog journalism across the country. Our nonprofit newsroom has exposed major flaws in health care treatment for veterans, shined a white hot light on campaign finance and infrastructure problems, tracked the demise and revival of San Diego’s fishing industry, and uncovered a tax-paid system that keeps people alive on machines. inewsource has won scores of awards, including nine on the national level, including a national Emmy nomination.
Rochester will work with inewsource’s current Managing Editor Laura Wingard through the next few months of transition. She plans to retire this summer.
Prior to joining Type Investigations, Rochester was senior news director for investigations at The Detroit Free Press. During his tenure, the paper published investigations that brought significant change to greater Detroit and throughout Michigan. His team uncovered conflicts of interest involving Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan and a nonprofit that received significant funding and city resources. The city’s Office of Inspector General opened an investigation that confirmed the newspaper’s findings, and the Michigan attorney general launched an ongoing criminal investigation.
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“I’m really looking forward to joining the inewsource staff, which is already doing such terrific watchdog reporting and data analysis,” Rochester said. “They all embrace the mission of making communities better through powerful journalism, and that’s what I’ve always believed in.”
Before he arrived in Detroit, Rochester was executive editor of The Herald in Rock Hill, South Carolina. As a result of his leadership there, he was selected as a juror for the Pulitzer Prizes. Earlier in his career, he served as deputy managing editor at The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, overseeing digital strategy and content, as well as investigations. In 2015, the Post-Gazette twice was recognized nationally for its digital innovation, including a citation by Editor & Publisher magazine. He has also served as assistant bureau chief for the Associated Press in San Francisco, managing editorial, sales and marketing operations for California, Nevada and Hawaii. Rochester also has held senior management positions at The Denver Post, Newsday and The Indianapolis Star.
In June 2020, he was elected to the national board of directors of Investigative Reporters & Editors (IRE), having previously served from 2001-2003. Rochester is the first African American journalist to serve as vice president of the board. He is currently on the advisory board of the Investigative Reporting Workshop at American University in Washington, D.C.
Teams conducting innovative accountability reporting under Rochester have garnered national and international awards, as well as citations by Amnesty International, Columbia Journalism Review, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, and IRE. He currently mentors emerging journalists as part of the IRE Journalists of Color Investigative Reporting Fellowship, as well as the 2020 Report for America corps.
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