Sunday, June 16, 2024

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Meet your local reporters

There are real people behind those headlines each morning

LANSING, Ill. (September 18, 2023) – The Lansing Journal has been providing local news for six years now, and our team of reporters has changed throughout that time. Most of our reporters are freelancers, so their availability to The Lansing Journal ebbs and flows according to the rhythm of their other work and life commitments.

That can make it difficult to define who “the writing team” is at any given time. But we think it’s important to give our readers at least a basic introduction to the people they depend on for accurate, timely information. And for people who support The Lansing Journal, we want to affirm that every dollar you give goes right into the journalism.

Reporters who have contributed stories in the past three months are listed below. A giving button is also included under each reporter’s bio as a gentle reminder that the work these people do is worthy of your support.

Carrie Steinweg

Carrie Steinweg

Brief bio
Carrie Steinweg is a freelance writer, photographer, author, and food and travel blogger who lived in Lansing for 30 years before a recent move to Valparaiso, Indiana. She most enjoys writing about food, people, history, and baseball. Those interests have led to a variety of local news assignments for The Lansing Journal as well as other local media outlets, giving Carrie a wide range of interactions with celebrities, sports heroes, and other interesting people.

Compiled coverage: Carrie Steinweg’s portfolio

Recent reporting: Lansing’s Vera Schmidt celebrates 100th birthday (August 6, 2023)

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Jennifer Yos

Jennifer Yos

Brief bio
Jennifer Yos grew up on Walter Street in Lansing with nine siblings. She attended St. Ann School and TF South before earning a BA and an MS in Education. For 34 years Jennifer taught English, Creative Writing, and Drama at Lincoln-Way High School. She dabbled in freelance journalism for the Joliet Herald News Living section. Now retired, Jennifer appreciates the opportunity to report interesting stories for her community. She is uplifted by the variety of positive people she has met who are making a difference in Lansing.

Compiled coverage: Jennifer Yos’s portfolio

Recent reporting: Solstice Community Solar Program can reduce electric costs for Lansing residents (August 29, 2023)

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Josh Bootsma

Josh Bootsma

Brief bio
As The Lansing Journal’s Managing Editor, Josh knows the importance of community when it comes to local news, and he understands the importance of local news in building community. He serves Lansing and the surrounding communities by coordinating assignments for The Lansing Journal’s team of freelance reporters, formatting and scheduling news for daily distribution, and covering many stories as a journalist himself. Josh also uses his photography skills to enhance the information published in The Lansing Journal, and he exercises videography skills by shooting and producing the weekly videos we post.

Compiled coverage: Josh Bootsma’s portfolio

Recent video: Video: T-shirts, hoodies, mugs, and more — why The Lansing Journal opened a Shop (September 15, 2023)

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Kinise Jordan

Kinise Jordan

Brief bio
Kinise Jordan brings local experience and a long list of journalism skills to her work with The Lansing Journal. She understands the need for reliable, factual information in equipping people to build community. An Audio News internship with WBEZ honed her interviewing skills as well as her sense of timing and deadlines. Kinise is a native of Calumet City, so she is familiar with the interplay of local government, local schools, and local businesses. Most recently she has been immersing herself in the variety of events available in Lansing, turning around stories and photos quickly to keep people informed.

Compiled coverage: Kinise Jordan’s portfolio

Recent reporting: Lan-Sing event postponed due to weather (September 17, 2023)

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Marlene Cook

Brief bio
Marlene Cook is a Lansing resident who loves learning and writing about local history. A member of the Illinois Women’s Press Association since 1973, she has won multiple IWPA awards and was presented with their Lifetime Member Award in 2015. Marlene has been contributing at least one article per month in our Lansing History category of news. She devotes hours of research to each article, gathering information from a variety of sources and pulling it all together into informative stories that are accessible to new generations of readers.

Compiled coverage: Marlene Cook’s portfolio

Recent reporting: Lansing History: The Adduci house on Ridge and Lorenz once belonged to Henry Lansing (September 14, 2023)

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Melanie Jongsma

Melanie Jongsma

Brief bio
Melanie has spent her career helping people share their stories, and working for The Lansing Journal gives her unique opportunities to keep doing so. She founded The Lansing Journal in 2017 because she saw a need for a source of reliable, balance, very local information. From the very beginning, response from readers has confirmed that The Lansing Journal is meeting a need. Melanie enjoys working on stories that aren’t being told anywhere else, and she believes diversity enriches community. Some favorite assignments include stories that have introduced her to new cultures within Lansing, such as skateboarders, veterans, Latinos, LARC, and churches.

Compiled coverage: Melanie Jongsma’s portfolio

Recent reporting: 2023 LOOP Bike Ride — summary and photos (September 17, 2023)

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Mike Clark

Mike Clark

Brief bio
Mike Clark is a veteran journalist who has been covering sports in the Chicago area and beyond, from preps to pros, for more than four decades. He shows up at football games and baseball games in all kinds of weather because he believes sports are important to the formation of community and the development of youth.

Compiled coverage: Mike Clark’s portfolio

Recent reporting: TF North Football starts 3-0 in turnaround season – other local scores (September 17, 2023)

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Paul Czapkowicz

Paul Czapkowicz

Brief bio
Paul Czapkowicz has served as a correspondent for the Northwest Indiana Times, so he is familiar with local politics, local business, and local goings-on in general. His training as a teacher gives him an innate sense of how to present facts in an organized and meaningful way, so readers gain understanding of complex subjects.

Compiled coverage: Paul Czapkowicz’s portfolio

Recent reporting: Fine Tune Auto plans expansion to neighboring vacant property (September 13, 2023)

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Other contributors

A variety of other people have contributed articles to The Lansing Journal throughout our history. Though job changes or family responsibilities have made these freelance writers less available to us, their work continues to be accessible on our website. The page below includes links to each contributor’s complete portfolio of Lansing Journal articles:

Supporting reporting

We are grateful for the variety of skills and knowledge our team of local journalists brings to this paper and to our community. They are committed to their craft and committed to our readers. They care about this community, and they believe we deserve quality coverage.

This year, these local journalists reported about local events, people, schools, churches, sports, and businesses every single day. Their hard work helps keep our community informed and connected. Will you help support this essential work?

Click to visit our secure form to invest in your team of local reporters covering local news. If you are able to make a monthly gift, leave the box checked when you choose your amount:


 
Melanie Jongsma
Melanie Jongsma
Melanie Jongsma grew up in Lansing, Illinois, and believes The Lansing Journal has an important role to play in building community through trustworthy information.

2 COMMENTS

  1. I disagree. Although most of the news is about Lansing people and events, our community is affected by other towns around us. Children from Lynwood attend our schools. TF North and TF South are part of School District 215 and some of their sports are combined. I enjoy reading news about TF North, Munster Performing Arts, and news from other nearby towns. I think that reporters from other towns can help provide a more well rounded paper.

Comments are closed.

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