Our Team

Meet the journalists and media professionals in the field and behind the scenes.

We help the public better understand issues affecting them, their loved ones and their neighbors by cutting through complex narratives and data and reporting findings through inclusive, impactful journalism.


Lorie Hearn is CEO, editor and founder of inewsource. She built a reporting career at five newspapers on both coasts, covering a range of beats but specializing in legal issues. She moved into editing roles at the San Diego Union-Tribune after returning from a Nieman fellowship at Harvard. Lorie oversaw local coverage and investigations as Metro Editor and then as a Senior Editor. She started inewsource in 2009 as part of the national nonprofit news movement.


Jamie manages the newsroom and drives our editorial strategy. In 2021, she joined us from her home state of South Carolina, where she led the politics and state government team at The State newspaper in Columbia. Before that, she was an investigative and political reporter, covering First-in-the-South presidential primaries and state elections, and producing award-winning enterprise and investigative reporting on many state issues, including public corruption, child welfare, education, abortion, gun rights and more. She also covered the massacre of African American churchgoers at Mother Emanuel AME in Charleston and the subsequent battle to remove the Confederate flag from the statehouse grounds. She has a master’s in literature and taught university-level writing and research before turning to journalism. If not working, Jamie is spending time with family, studying Spanish, reading or cooking something new.

Jennifer joined us in November 2019 and serves as inewsource’s assistant editor. Before that, she was an investigative reporter focusing on government accountability issues in southern San Diego and Imperial counties. Jennifer covered local government at daily newspapers in Michigan and North Carolina for nearly a decade before moving back home to San Diego. A proud product of community college and a San Diego State University graduate, she lives in Chula Vista with her family, too many houseplants and a black pug named Pablo.

Andrea joined inewsource as an education reporter in June 2022. She’s also a Report for America corps member, a national service program that tasks journalists to report on undercovered communities and issues. Prior to joining us, she was the equity/underserved communities reporter at The Modesto Bee, where she shed light on underreported issues in Stanislaus County. Andrea is a Fresno native and graduate of San Jose State University. Outside of work, Andrea enjoys dancing, attending sporting events, gardening and cuddling with her senior dog, Andy.

Jill Castellano

Investigative Data Coordinator

Jill joined inewsource in February 2018 as an investigative reporter. Her technical skills analyzing data come in handy for her own projects and for the whole newsroom. She has written about about criminal justice, veterans, public health and other topics. Jill grew up in New York and went to college at the University of Pennsylvania, where she fell in love with journalism. In 2018, she shared the Pulitzer Prize for Explanatory Reporting with a group of journalists at USA TODAY. Besides reporting, Jill loves running, hiking, weight lifting and exploring the great outdoors.

Cody Dulaney

Investigative Reporter – Social Impact and Government Accountability

Cody joined us in September 2019 as an investigative reporter who covers social impact and government accountability. Prior to inewsource, he worked on investigative teams with newspapers in the American South. Cody is a proud Floridian who received his bachelor’s degree in journalism and media studies in 2013 from the University of South Florida, where he also studied criminology. He can be spotted taking his pup, Vincent van Dog, to the mountains or the beach, sometimes both in one day.

Sofía Mejías-Pascoe

Investigative Reporter – Border and Immigration

Sofía joined us in August 2021 and covers the San Diego-Tijuana region and the people who live, work and pass through the area. Her reporting experience has come full circle: She grew up in San Diego working for a local news-weekly and now reports on the border for her hometown. Sofía is a UC Santa Barbara graduate, member of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and proud Obecian. Outside of work you’ll usually find her at the beach, in the kitchen or searching for live music in the area.

Zoë joined us in 2019 as a photo and video journalist. Previously she worked at The Desert Sun in the Coachella Valley and independently. She grew up in New York but has lived in California since studying history and English at Pomona College. When not behind the camera Zoë enjoys spending time outside running, surfing and enjoying the Southern California sunshine.

Crystal Niebla

Infrastructure and Government Accountability Reporter

Crystal joined us in June 2022 to cover infrastructure and government accountability in San Diego. Her position is partly funded by Report for America, a national program that supports local journalists. Crystal is passionate about accountability reporting because she knows good journalism can be a catalyst for change that can improve the lives of the public. After living in Primo Tapia, Mexico, Crystal mostly grew up in South Los Angeles before moving to Long Beach to study journalism and sociology at California State University, Long Beach. Outside of work, Crystal has too many hobbies to list on this bio.

Philip Salata joined us in September 2023 as an investigative reporter and multimedia journalist focused on the environment and energy in San Diego and Imperial counties. His position is supported by the California Local News Fellowship, a new statewide initiative spearheaded by UC Berkeley aimed at supporting local news platforms. During his graduate work at USC Annenberg and his time at San Diego City College’s journalism program, Philip developed stories about the social and environmental impacts of the push toward the green economy and also wrote about U.S. asylum policy, education and other social/cultural issues in the border region. Philip is also a photographer.


Emily works to expand the reach of inewsource’s investigations through social media, newsletters, web presentation and community-building. She joined us in May 2022, returning home to San Diego after reporting on education in the Central Valley and studying journalism and political science at Indiana University. Emily is passionate about making complex information accessible. Aside from journalism she loves fitness and the performing arts.


Giovanni joined us October 2022 and manages the overall user experience across our suite of news products and integrations. His love for UX came from a background of innovation in journalism, including 360 video production and social media. Giovanni is a native San Diegan, proud University of Southern California Trojan and among a small consortium of left-handers in the inewsource newsroom. In his free time, you’ll catch him cycling around town or performing an impromptu dance routine he had no business creating in the first place.


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Bobbie Jo Kelso

Director of Philanthropy

Bobbie Jo joined us in June 2022 and leads philanthropic strategy to inspire and sustain support for our investigative and accountability journalism. She has a passion for building brands, inspiring action and raising critical funds for a brighter world. Bobbie Jo grew up in San Diego and is a journalism grad of San Diego State University, where she also serves on the Advisory Board of its School of Journalism & Media Studies. She spent seven years as a journalist reporting in San Diego and Orange counties and from southern Africa before turning her expertise to strategic communications and fundraising for nonprofits. Bobbie Jo achieved her accreditation as a Certified Fundraising Executive (CFRE) and has a certificate in nonprofit management.

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Justin Rushing

Director of Growth and Partnerships

Justin joined us in October 2021 and oversees organizational growth with a focus on audience development, brand strategies, product enhancement and revenue attainment. Throughout his 13-year tenure as a media professional, Justin has worked across traditional and emerging media companies in business development and advertising capacities. His love and curiosity for media fuels his creativity. Justin leads by doing and supports through empowering, and he always sees the finish line before starting the race!

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William Ackerman

Philanthrophy Coordinator

Will brings nearly a decade of working in nonprofits to his role on the development team. Joining inewsource in September 2022, his expertise in the areas of nonprofit development and technology aid the organization in raising funds to support our programs, streamlining existing business processes and acknowledging our donors for their contributions toward our mission. He loves connecting with our loyal donors to further support our cause of free and independent journalism. Will is a certified Salesforce Administrator who has used his expertise on federal and private projects, and is proficient in many cloud-based applications and databases used for improving organizational workflows and functions. Combining years of grant writing and fundraising, he is adept at creating processes that not only improve efficiency but also raise revenue and elevate donor stewardship.


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Carla Sanchez

Director of Finance and Operations

Carla joined the team in March 2016 and leads seamless fiscal, administrative, and human resources systems and procedures. When she is not glued to a computer, you can find her at a concert or trying the newest restaurant in San Diego or Tijuana.

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