Publisher Diane Zeigler directs VTDigger’s fundraising, grants, underwriting, events and outreach programs, and the data collection, budgeting and accounting functions for the organization.
Zeigler was previously the Director of Web Strategies & Client Affairs at KSE Partners, a Montpelier communications and government affairs firm. She directed the communications and advertising effort for the landmark 2009 Vermont Freedom to Marry Campaign, managed local and national ad campaigns, produced television and radio spots, CD compilations and video documentaries, and has served on numerous technology development teams.
She served as Webmaster & Director of Technology Projects at the Vermont Arts Council from 2002-2008, and was the development and statewide canvass director at the Vermont Public Interest Research Group from 1987-1992.
Zeigler is an accomplished singer/songwriter and guitarist and spent 20 years in the music business as a touring musician. She has five critically acclaimed recordings to her credit, and is the winner of eight national songwriting awards.
Director of Underwriting
It was a job that brought Murray-Clasen to Vermont. After an assignment in the US Peace Corps, she headed up the VT Department of Public Service’s Consumer Advocacy Division. Following the birth of two daughters, her work focused on the environment and public schools. Working with Central Vermont Solid Waste Management District and a slate of partners, she helped design and implement an award winning comprehensive school organics diversion program. She later developed a comprehensive closed loop sustainability program that integrated local foods and composting into schools’ meal service programs in both VT and NH. She recently served as the Executive Director of Just Basics Inc. a non-profit dedicated to integrating local foods into food pantries and senior citizen meal programs. She has served on numerous non-profit boards promoting and integrating the VT food system into public institutions. She volunteers in a variety of roles within the Montpelier School District where she resides with her husband and two daughters.
Associate Publisher Phayvanh Luekhamhan is in charge of events, social media campaigns and membership support for VTDigger.
Luekhamhan was previously the executive director for Montpelier Alive, Montpelier’s nonprofit downtown revitalization organization, where she increased the organization’s public profile with coordinated marketing and promotional efforts that contributed to successful fundraising campaigns. Her work on Montpelier Art Walk, PoemCity and Capital City Cash earned awards from the Vermont Downtown & Village Centers Program. She is the co-founder of PoemCity. She comes to VTDigger with a background in volunteer management, event and project planning as well as program and business development. She has received nonprofit training from Marlboro College and Leadership Education for Asian Pacifics (LEAP). A lifelong Vermonter, she lives in Barre.
Cate Chant is a part-time copy editor for VTDigger. Her professional life has included various aspects of publishing, including graphic arts, writing and editing. She has lived off and on in Vermont; her latest return was in 2002 after 11 years in western Massachusetts. She had her start in journalism as a reporter at the Daily Hampshire Gazette in Northampton, Mass., and was a copy editor there for many years. She was a western Massachusetts stringer for The Boston Globe for 4½ years. Most recently, she was a copy editor for the Barre-Montpelier Times Argus, where she worked many a Friday and Saturday night with Anne Galloway. She has a B.A. in journalism from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She lives in Northfield with her husband, Steve Belitsos, and their twins, Luke and Libby.
Jasper Craven is VTDigger’s political reporter. A Vermont native, he first discovered his love for journalism at the Caledonian Record. He double-majored in print journalism and political science at Boston University, and worked in the Boston Globe’s Metro and Investigative units. While at the Globe he collaborated on Shadow Campus, a three-part investigative series focused on greed and mismanagement in Boston’s off-campus student housing market. The series was a finalist for the 2015 Pulitzer Prize. He also spent two years at MuckRock, a news sited dedicated to investigation and analysis of government documents. Craven covered Vermont’s U.S. Congressional delegation for the Times Argus in the summer of 2014, and worked as a Metro reporter for the Chicago Tribune before joining the staff of VTDigger.
Mike Faher reports and writes for both VTDigger, and The Commons (commonsnews.org), a weekly newspaper based in Brattleboro covering Windham County. Faher has worked as a daily newspaper journalist for 16 years, most recently as lead reporter at the Brattleboro Reformer where he covered several towns and schools as well as the Vermont Legislature and Windham Superior Court. He previously worked for 13 years in his native Pennsylvania at The Johnstown Tribune-Democrat.
Editor and Executive Director
Anne Galloway is the founder and editor of VTDigger and the executive director of the nonprofit Vermont Journalism Trust. She has worked as a reporter and editor for over 20 years. She holds a BA from the University of Kentucky and moved to Vermont in 1988. For many years, Galloway was a contributing writer for Seven Days Newspaper and a visual arts reviewer for the Times Argus. She was the editor of the Sunday Rutland Herald and Barre Times Argus from 2004 to 2009. Her reporting has appeared in The New York Times (the Vows column), the New York Daily News, Vermont Life and City Pages (Minneapolis). She is a member of Investigative Reporters and Editors.
Ruth Hare has filled a variety of newspaper editing roles over the past 25-plus years. From 1992 to 2015, she worked for The Times Argus and the Rutland Herald in jobs that included news editor and assistant Sunday editor. Her published writing includes travel and feature stories, personal essays and book reviews. She is an avid hiker, skier and bicyclist. She has backpacked Vermont’s 272-mile Long Trail from end to end and ridden her bike across the country in a 4,200-mile journey from Oregon to Virginia.
Elizabeth Hewitt is a copyeditor and general assignment reporter for VTDigger. She grew up in central Vermont and holds a graduate degree in magazine journalism from New York University.
Senior Editor and Reporter
Mark Johnson is a senior editor and reporter for VTDigger. He covered crime and politics for the Burlington Free Press before a 25-year run as the host of the Mark Johnson Show radio program on WKDR and WDEV.
Erin Mansfield covers health care and business for VTDigger. From 2013 to 2015, she wrote for the Rutland Herald and Times Argus. Erin holds a B.A. in Economics and Spanish from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, where she also attended journalism school. Erin has worked in public and private schools across Vermont and interned in the U.S. Senate. She has been published by the Columbia Journalism Review and the Society of Professional Journalists. She grew up in Killington.
Tiffany Danitz Pache
Tiffany Danitz Pache is VTDigger’s education reporter. Pache covered metro and foreign news for The Washington Times before she joined the original staff of stateline.org in 1998. stateline.org focused on state house politics, national trends as well as the relationship between state governments and Washington. As the education reporter, Pache covered George W. Bush’s landmark education proposals that became the No Child Left Behind legislation. Pache moved to Vermont with her husband and children in 2014. She has a MA in International Affairs from The American University and BA in History from Mars Hill University.
Mike Polhamus writes about energy and the environment for VTDigger. He formerly covered Teton County and the state of Wyoming for the Jackson Hole News & Guide, in Jackson, Wyoming. He now lives in Waterbury. Polhamus studied at Southwestern Oregon Community College and the University of Oxford and graduated from Sarah Lawrence College. His research has been commissioned on a variety of topics such as malnutrition and HIV, economic development, and Plato’s Phaedo. Polhamus hails originally from the state of Oregon.
Morgan True is VTDigger’s Burlington bureau chief. A Seattle native, he graduated from Boston University with a B.S. in Journalism before working for several publications in Massachusetts. He came to VTDigger in December 2013 from The Brockton Daily Enterprise, where he covered government, schools and hospitals in a city of about 100,000 people. Before joining The Enterprise, he worked for The Associated Press in Concord, N.H., where he served as a relief reporter in the Statehouse. He previously worked for The Quincy (Mass.) Patriot Ledger and as an intern at the Worcester (Mass.) Telegram & Gazette. Many eyes are on Vermont as it moves toward universal health care coverage in 2017 and he is excited to be on the front lines.
Jon Margolis, author of The Last Innocent Year: America in 1964, left the Chicago Tribune early in 1995 after 23 years as Washington correspondent, sports writer, correspondent-at-large and general columnist. Margolis spent most of his Tribune years in the Washington Bureau as the newspaper’s chief national political correspondent. In 1988, he was one of the journalists asking questions of Senators Lloyd Bentsen and Dan Quayle in their televised vice presidential debate. Before joining the Tribune in 1973, Margolis had been the Albany Bureau Chief for Newsday. He was the first reporter on the scene of the Attica prison rebellion in 1971, and spent the entire first night inside the prisoner-held “D” yard. Earlier, Margolis was a reporter for the Bergen Record in Hackensack, N.J.; the Miami Herald and the Concord Monitor (N.H.). In addition to The Last Innocent Year, published by William Morrow in 1999, he is the author of How To Fool Fish With Feathers: An Incomplete Guide to Fly Fishing (Simon and Schuster, 1991) and The Quotable Bob Dole — Witty, Wise and Otherwise, (Avon Books, 1995). He also wrote two chapters of Howard Dean: A Citizens Guide to the Man Who Would be President (Steerforth, 2003). A native of New Jersey, Margolis graduated from Oberlin College in 1962. He served in the US Army.
Kevin O’Connor is a Brattleboro-based writer and former staffer for the Sunday Rutland Herald and Times Argus.