You are on eastlansinginfo.org, ELi's old domain, which is now an archive of news (as of early April, 2020). If you are looking for the latest news, go to eastlansinginfo.news and update your bookmarks accordingly!
You are on eastlansinginfo.org, ELi's old domain, which is now an archive of news (as of early April, 2020). If you are looking for the latest news, go to eastlansinginfo.news and update your bookmarks accordingly!
Alice Dreger (above) focuses mostly on Government reporting for ELi, although occasionally you'll find her wandering into various other areas of reporting. She is the founder, Publisher, and President of the Board of Directors of ELi. Her work is voluntary (unpaid). A native New Yorker, Alice lives with her life partner Aron Sousa in the Oakwood neighborhood in a house built in 1923 by Charlie Washburn. Her bylines include the New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal, WIRED, Slate, the Atlantic, and her big investigative work for ELi includes safety problems at East Lansing's wastewater treatment plant, the twists and turns of the $132 million public-private Center City District project, and the federal fraud suit involving a conflict of interest by the City Attorney. You can learn more about her non-ELi work at her personal website. Alice is a financial donor to ELi; join her today
Emily Joan Elliott (above) is a transplant to Michigan from the Bronx, NY. After attending the State University of New York at Binghamton, she moved to East Lansing to earn her Ph.D. in history at Michigan State University. While pursuing her doctorate, which she earned in 2019, Emily was fortunate enough to live in Moscow, Russia for a year to complete her dissertation research on temporary labor migration to Moscow from other parts of the Soviet Union. Emily is a fixed-term assistant professor at the Residential College in the Arts and Humanities at MSU and a tutor training facilitator with the Capital Area Literacy Coalition. Emily is particularly interested in issues related to education, government, and migration. In her personal life, she enjoys traveling, cooking dinner with her partner in crime, and reading fiction. Most recently Emily has written about the Marble Equity Team at Marble Elementary School.
Paige Filice (above) is a native of Lansing, Michigan and is an Environmental Quality Analyst with the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality. She graduated from Michigan State University in 2018 with a Master’s Degree in Fisheries and Wildlife and received her Bachelor’s Degree from Lake Superior State University. Her reporting interests for ELi include environmental and water resources issues, gardening, and anything to do with the outdoors. For a sample, check out her story on the Burcham Road rain garden or her answer to a reader's question about where our frogs go in the winter. When she isn’t working or writing, Paige enjoys backpacking, camping, kayaking, mountain bike riding, and playing badminton.
Chris Gray (above) grew up on the Buckeye side of the Michigan-Ohio line in Defiance, but has deep ties to the Mitten State and fulfilled a lifelong dream by moving to the state in June 2019, renting a house in Lansing. He has over ten years of journalism experience, and has always been focused on government reporting. For ELI, he has been covering the East Lansing City Council and has written about the Zoning Board's denial to an appeal from a marijuana business looking to open, the recommendation from the Public Works Director for a new $3.5 million dollar sewer, and the solar panel pioneers of historic Kensington Road in addition to many other stories. He spent nine years working and living in Oregon, primarily as a healthcare reporter in the state capitol at the nonprofit watchdog news site, The Lund Report. He has an English degree from Miami University in Ohio and a master's in journalism from Northwestern University.
Ann Kammerer (above) regularly reports on local people for ELi's readers. Her personalized portraits of folks around town tell us about good people doing good work. Ann says, "I'm fascinated by people who make a difference through their work, art and everyday kindness." In 2016, she reported on a musical composition by Billy Childs designed to promote human rights awareness, and since then she has written about teacher Conni Crittenden, Officer Steve Whelan, recycler Drew Choma, a mobile health clinic, the Firecracker Foundation, and much more. In 2018, she did a special series for us on ELHS alum and their advice to the graduating class.
Noa Kuszai (above) is a native of East Lansing and has lived in Chesterfield Hills her entire life, in a household where ice cream is considered a vegetable. Currently, she attends East Lansing High School, where she will be graduating in 2020. Noa started with ELi in August 2018 through their Summer Youth Journalism Program. Besides writing, Noa loves to paint and play her several instruments, which include piano, alto and bari sax, and tenor ukulele.
Mark Meyer (above) began writing regularly for ELi in August 2018 by providing coverage of the East Lansing High School football season, which included game stories, advances and an occasional feature story, such as the end of season Recognition Night and a profile of head coach Bill Feraco, who was recently inducted into the Michigan High School Football Coaches Association Hall of Fame. Mark and his family moved to East Lansing during the 2001-02 school year, when he accepted a position as assistant features editor at the Lansing State Journal. He eventually worked his way over to the sports desk, where he was sports editor from March 2007 until June 2011. He has since held writing positions with the public relations agency of Truscott Rossman as well as Michigan State University. His wife, Christine (whom he met in a central Illinois newsroom more than 30 years ago), works for the Capital Area District Library’s Outreach department. His three daughters – Libby, Emily and Ellen – all graduated from East Lansing High School, and his fourth (well, kind of), Sandy, is a 16-year-old terrier mix whom the family adopted from the Ingham County Animal Control shelter in April 2006. Mark grew up in northwest suburban Chicago and graduated from St. Mary’s College (Winona, Minn.) with a bachelor’s degree in 1983.
Brad Minor (above) grew up in a small town about 45 minutes outside of Lansing, and made his big city move to the area for school. His reporting focuses mostly on the City Council and other local government. He lives right on the border of Lansing and East Lansing, about a stone's throw away from Dagwoods where you can find him most game nights. A politico by trade, he has spent the last four years working in and around Republican politics. He is passionate about honest, fair and nonpartisan reporting which is why he decided to come on board with Eli. If he’s not working, there's a good chance you can find him at the dog park with his Yellow Lab, Leroy and Shepherd mix, Sloan.
Ann Nichols (above), ELi's Managing Editor, has been a cellist, a lawyer, a soccer mom, a political operative, and a Buddhist cook at a Protestant church. As it turns out, she’s really a writer. Raised in East Lansing, she currently lives in a 102-year-old house near the MSU campus with her husband, her son and an improbable number of animals. Ann has served on the board of the Community Relations Coalition and as President of the Oakwood Neighborhood founded the Brownie Brigade. For her service to East Lansing, she has been given the Crystal Award. Besides all of her professional talents, Ann brings to ELi her love of local food, her talent for meaningful relationships with the MSU students who live all around her, and a pride in living downtown. Her reporting for ELi often draws on her J.D., as with her stories on the legal status of marijuana in East Lansing and on a lawsuit brought against the City by workers for asbestos risk. Check out Ann's terrific place-making column, Ann about Town. Ann is also a financial donor to ELi; join her today.
Chris Root (above) moved to East Lansing in 1983 from Washington, D.C. Chris registered as a lobbyist at the age of 18, when she began working on anti-apartheid and southern Africa issues for a church- and union-sponsored non-profit, the Washington Office on Africa. After moving to East Lansing, Chris provided staff support for the Democratic caucus of the Michigan House of Representatives on a bill to divest state public employee pension funds from companies operating in South Africa. Chris continues her focus on this movement by helping to build the Africa Activist Archive Project. Chris worked at MSU for 15 years helping faculty obtain grants. She now devotes a lot of her time to monitoring economic development and financial issues in East Lansing, gardening, and spending time with family. She focuses mainly on government reporting for ELi (parking lot sales, City finances, campaign finance analysis--Chris does it all!) but she has also been known to encourage local foraging and to provide tasty recipes for local weeds. Chris is also a financial donor to ELi; join her today.
Ken Sperber (above) along with his life partner Valerie Thonger is the ELi Calendar of Events Co-Editor and sometimes also an ELi reporter. His reports for ELi have included topics as diverse as the hiring of election inspectors, replacement of lawns with flowering plants, and the termination of the head of BWL. When they are not correcting each other, Ken and Val also work together as the ELi proofreaders. Ken has worked in a variety of early childhood education and care programs from MSU campus preschools to Head Start and then the Ingham County Office for Young Children and Great Start. Ken says that the best part about working with families with young children was that it helped keep the child inside him always alive. Now retired, Ken and Val have one grown son off in Chicago and another recently married and is living in Sacramento. With the recent passing of his parents, Ken has shifted his attention from eldercare to getting ready to become a first time grandparent. He stays busy with gardening, soccer, being a fix-it man, and ELi. Ken enjoys working on ELi as it brings back memories of working from the basement of his house with his roommates and friends in the 1970s on Lansing's first underground alternative newspapers, the Joint Issue and then the Lansing Star. Ken is also a financial donor to ELi; join him today.
Sarah Spohn (above) is a little bit of a rock 'n' roll rebel, almost always at a concert. She loves to soak up the local scene -- boutiques, libraries, diners, and record stores. She still buys CDs and borrows music documentaries from the library. Just don't call her a hipster. (She says she's never been that stylish.) Sarah has reported for us on lots of happenings in and around East Lansing, including a local video game tournament, the Summer Solstice Jazz Festival, the scene at Groovy Donuts, and ELHS's spring musical.
Valerie Thonger (above) moved to Michigan to go to MSU in 1971 and has made East Lansing her home. With her husband and best bud, Ken Sperber, she has two grown sons, who are well-adjusted, smart and self-sufficient (as is true for their daughter-in law). At ELi, Valerie, working with Ken, is the Calendar of Events Co-Editor, proofreader, and occasionally also a reporter. Her stories for ELi have included reports on the hiring of election workers, early childhood programming, and blood donation opportunities. Valerie worked at the non-profit Eastminster Child Development Center for over 31 years in a variety of administrative positions including Assistant Director, Interim Director (several times), Finance Coordinator, and ECDC Board Member. At ECDC, Valerie was responsible for keeping the accounts for the revenues and expenses for what grew to be a million-dollar budget. During her 30+ years there, Val was able to account for all the expenses and revenues down to the last penny. Valerie especially enjoyed building so many relationships with the parents and children for all those years. It is gratifying for her to now see those same parents as grandparents, and the former preschoolers as grown adults and now parents. As a retiree, Val has volunteered at the Marble School library, at Everybody Reads bookstore, and at the East Lansing Public Library. Valerie's hobbies include reading, gardening, biking, walking, soccer, traveling and, of course, ELi. Val is also a financial donor to ELi; join her today.
Dan Totzkay (above) has lived all around East Lansing for the last 9 years and started reporting for ELi in August 2018. His reporting focuses primarily on City Council and other parts of local government (as part of the oh-so amazing ELi Gov Gang when he’s not distracted by finishing his PhD in Communication at Michigan State University. When he’s not reporting on things like local development and marijuana ordinances, Dan researches about how to strategically communicate to change people’s health-related beliefs and behaviors and was 1 of 6 graduate teaching assistants university-wide to receive the MSU Excellence in Teaching Citation for the 2018-2019 academic year.
Christopher Wardell (above) is a freelance writer who lives in East Lansing with his wife Nicky Mason-Wardell, who is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Agricultural, Food, and Resource Economics at MSU. Together with their dog Maddy, and cat Kavita (aka Bunny), they are expecting their first child in August! Christopher manages the popular Lansing-based rock band, From Big Sur, and has a once-a-month guest appearance on the All-Request Saturday Night radio show on Classic Rock 94.9 WMMQ, where he features a record from his extensive collection. He also features a record on a semi-daily basis on his Facebook page, which he calls "What's On My Turntable Today." He used to report for the Lansing State Journal and was a regular contributor to City Pulse, Jambands.com, Relix Magazine, Etch Magazine, and Music Review. His extensive reporting for ELi has ranged from covering the East Lansing Arts Festival to East Lansing's Summer Concert Series to the Bailey Ice Cream Social and beyond. We can always count on him to profile visiting artists in a way that really captures their music and purpose.
Karessa Wheeler (above), ELi's chief Schools reporter, has worked in journalism for more than 25 years, earning a master’s degree from the Knight Center for Environmental Journalism at Michigan State University, and bachelor’s degrees in journalism and anthropology from MSU. She has written for daily newspapers in Michigan and Maryland, as well as political magazines and various publications, including the Wall Street Journal Classroom Edition. She has taught journalism at Spring Arbor University and Jackson College. She currently works as the communications specialist for the Environmental Science and Policy Program at MSU. She lives in the Oakwood neighborhood of East Lansing with her husband, Brian Wheeler, three children--Elliott, Alec and Maggie--and way too many pets. She enjoys reading, gardening, cooking and biking. She also runs but does not enjoy it. In addition to her tireless Schools reporting for ELi, Karessa has brought our readers stories about Foods for Living donating food during an outage, music produced by people on the autism spectrum, and the Art for Charlie Foundation. Karessa is also a financial donor to ELi; join her today.
To date, ELi has had about 125 citizen reporters! Here is information about some of the other folks who have been reporters for ELi's readers:
Erik Altmann, a professor of psychology at MSU and resident of the Bailey Neighborhood, was elected to East Lansing's City Council in November 2015 and is a past reporter for ELi. He contributed to ELi in its early pre-incorporation years, including on the fireworks ordinance, and after incorporation on issues like the Park District redevelopment. Erik was a donor to East Lansing Info; now that he's on Council he's not allowed to donate. But if you're not a local elected official, you can.
Rosalind Arch graduated from Michigan State University with two majors, gender studies and philosophy, as well as a minor in peace and justice studies. Rosalind's work for ELi has ranged from reports on JoyRide Pedal Tours to a visit by a Holocaust survivor and author to an exhibit at Saper Galleries.
Grace Bargerstock was a member of our first Summer Youth Journalism Program while she was also attending East Lansing High School, and she reported for ELi on that program.
Thomas Baumann is a physicist and seeks to make roads safer by working on Safe Routes to School and the Transportation Commission in East Lansing. He explained road diets for our readers.
Charlotte Baykian graduated from Michigan State University and worked with ELi while she was a resident of East Lansing. If you'd like a sense of her work, you can check out her stories on the Flowerpot Neighborhood, on East Lansing High School's Students for Gender Equality club, on Tasty Twist, and on adoption among same-gender couples in East Lansing.
Kristin Beals Bellar is a resident of the Glencairn Neighborhood and reported for ELi on a community garden in her neighborhood.
Ruth Beier is a labor economist for the Michigan Educational Association, a member of the Oakwood Neighborhood, and was elected to East Lansing's City Council in November 2013. She contributed an obituary on her dog Jackson.
Amy Bigman is a rabbi for the Congregation Shaarey Zedek in East Lansing and is also a member of the East Lansing Clergy Association. She has contributed reporting on the Interfaith Thanksgiving Service and a program welcoming Jewish parents of young children.
Bill Castanier is a regular reporter for the Lansing City Pulse where he covers a variety of topics in Arts and Culture. His story on the history of housing discrimination in East Lansing was reprinted in ELi with permission.
Michael Conlin is a professor of economics at MSU and a resident of the Glencairn Neighborhood. In 2015, he helped ELi answer the question of whether voters should cast all three votes in a Council election if they only felt excited about one or two candidates. Mike has been a donor to East Lansing Info; join him today.
Katie Dama-Jaskolski is the co-founder and president of the Life as a Zebra Foundation. She wrote a report for ELi explaining the work of the foundation.
Amy Davis is a student at Michigan State University who reported for us on the local band Turn Up the Bricks.
Evan Dempsey graduated from East Lansing High School in 2018 and is now attending the University of Michigan. He was a graduate of our first Summer Youth Journalism Program and has covered a wide variety of stories for our readers, including ELFD's water rescue training, an art opening of works by student-refugees, local conversations about adoption, and what it's like to police East Lansing on big game days. ELi's editors have tried to give Evan stories that showcase his strong narrative abilities.
Jim Detjen worked for more than two decades as an award-winning journalist for The Philadelphia Inquirer and other newspapers. He has taught journalism at Vassar College, Drexel University and Michigan State University and is the founding director of MSU’s Knight Center for Environmental Journalism. He also is the founding president of the Society of Environmental Journalists. He's reported for ELi on the Alternative Holiday Fair and the solar project at his church, Edgewood United. He also helped us reach sustainability with a must-read report on the local news crisis.
Kepler Domurat-Sousa has lived in East Lansing his whole life and graduated from East Lansing High School in 2018. As a clarinetist, he was a member of the East Lansing Trojan Marching Band and the high school's Symphonic Band. He was also a member of the National Honor Society and played on the Quidditch team. With interests centered in science and technology, Kepler has reported for ELi on the City's anti-drone ordinance and MSU's Facility for Rare Isotope Beams (FRIB). Starting in Fall 2018, he'll be attending University of Chicago and plans to major in physics.
Katie Donovan reported for ELi on the East Lansing Rotary Club's Pancakes in the Park fundraiser.
Sarah Dougherty provided the history of Campbell's Smoke Shop for ELi's Rewind historical series. With Charlotte Baykian, she also co-authored an article on the battles faced by East Lansing same-sex couples seeking to adopt children.
Casandra Eriksen graduated from Western Michigan University, majoring in Comparative Religion and minoring in Psychology. She has called East Lansing home since 2003, and enjoys reading, writing, listening to music, and traveling. She also enjoys swimming, and venturing off the beaten path. She is progressive politically, partially because she is a lesbian. She also cares about the environment and making an economy that works for everyone. In the future she hopes to write a book and go back to school at Michigan State University for journalism. Her life goal is to make as much of a positive difference in the world as she can. Casandra has reported for us on a wide variety of topics, including the pace of ticket-writing in East Lansing, the MSU solar array, and the absence of gay bars in East Lansing.
Telaina Eriksen is an assistant professor in creative writing at Michigan State University and the author of Unconditional: Parenting Your LGBTQ Child (Mango Publishing 2017). Her writing has appeared (or is forthcoming) in Under the Sun, The Fem, The Good Men Project, Role Reboot, ARS Medica, Hospital Drive, Marco Polo Quarterly, The Truth About the Fact, poemmemoirstory, the poetry anthology Mother is a Verb, the anthology By One's Own Hand: Writing About Suicide Loss, and in other online and in-print publications. She was an artist in residence in 2013 for the Crosshatch Center for Art and Ecology in East Jordan, Michigan. She holds an MFA in creative nonfiction and poetry from Antioch University Los Angeles and a BA in journalism from Michigan State University. At ELi, she's reported on the high school boys' water polo team, MSU's annual Day of Percussion, ELHS teacher Dave Rosin receiving a statewide award, a high school student's landscaping business, and on local literary events. Telaina has also contributed an essay on why she writes for ELi. Telaina is also a financial donor to ELi; join her today.
Romy Fitschen is the Fiscal Director at the Michigan Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence and is a gradute of Beloit College. She reported for us on Boy Scouts Troop 2's celebration of its 95th continuous year in East Lansing.
Howard Fooksman, a masters student in MSU's Department of Writing, Rhetoric, and American Cultures, reported for ELi's readers on the first Capital City Comic Con.
John French, MSU Abram's Planetarium Program Assistant, has contributed astronomy reporting for ELi's readers.
Andrew Graham is an Okemos native and currently attends Syracuse University where he is studying Broadcast and Digital Journalism and where he works as a reporter and editor for The Daily Orange, Syracuse’s student run newspaper. Andrew has reported for us on schools issues and alcohol-law enforcement as well as the descent of Pokemon Go on East Lansing.
Jessy Gregg lives in the Shaw Estates neighborhood of East Lansing and was one of ELi's most versatile reporters. She stopped working with us when she decided to run for City Council. (We don't let candidates report for us.) She reported for ELi on City Council meetings, a controversial sorority development proposal, Crunchy’s, ELPD promotions, and Burcham Hills’ request for a liquor license. As the founder of Warrior Goddess Training, Jessy took seriously our mission of embedded reporting, as she brought news to fellow runners about local running opportunities. A graduate of the City’s Emerging Leader’s Program, Jessy served on the East Lansing Arts Commission and on the Ingham County Parks Commission. She has three children in the East Lansing Public Schools.
Hope Hagan reported for ELi on Red Cedar Spirits, a distillery housed in an old public works building.
Kurt Hankenson, an animal researcher at MSU and resident of the Bailey Neighborhood, reported for us on the Broad Museum's "Re-Envisioning East Lansing" exhibit. Kurt is also a financial donor to ELi; join him today.
Cody Harrell has served as the Director of ELi's Summer Youth Journalism Program and teaches English and Journalism at East Lansing High School. Harrell has been working with high school journalists ever since leaving his editorial position as a senior in high school and transitioning into a journalism degree program at Michigan State University. While at MSU, Harrell obtained specializations in graphic design, publication design, and web design.
Cassandra Heos has lived in East Lansing for over forty years. She is a retired East Lansing High School social studies teacher and department chairperson. She is the founder of Crime Stoppers of Mid Michigan. She also provides community service as a docent at the Supreme Court of the State of Michigan and as a tutor at the Literacy Coalition. She has written for ELi on WKAR's Pop-Up Stories and a celebration at Congregation Shaarey Zedek.
Richard Hill-Rowley, a resident of the Chesterfield Hills Neighborhood, reported for ELi on the history of the Sunday Friendly Co-Ed Soccer Group for our Rewind series. Richard is also a financial donor to ELi; join him today.
Charlie Hoogstraten, faculty in MSU's Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Department and a resident of the Bailey Neighborhood, has reported for us on the East Lansing Public Schools Board. Charlie is also a financial donor to ELi; join him today.
Ian Hoopingarner is interested in policy, the health of the planet, good governance, and a free internet. He has reported about local government for ELi, and is a graduate of East Lansing High School and Michigan State University. His work for ELi included stories on mistakes made at our water treatment plant, the City's attempt to locate local lead water pipes, and development in the Park District. More of Ian's writing can be found at Solastalgia.
Jill Kammerer reported for us on the ELHS girls swim and dive team, along with Mara Logan.
Danny Kaplowitz is the president of East Lansing High School's Gender Equality club and a participant in its student newspaper, among other extracurricular activities. He is interested in politics, history, and American culture. Danny started working for ELi in the fall of 2015 and covers the high school, along with other events happening around town. For a sense of his work, read his report on a #BlackLivesMatter event at the East Lansing Public Library and on a Costa Rica service trip.
John Kloswick, now retired from MSU, can often be found keeping ELi reporters company at City Council meetings on Tuesday nights. He is a steady ELi financial supporter, and reported for us on the rehiring of the City Attorney.
Sheryl Knox took on the question: Do most cities our size have a public library? Sheryl is a librarian, East Lansing resident, and donor to East Lansing Info.
Michael Lawrence is a Law professor at MSU, a member of the Oakwood Neighborhood, and serves on ELi's Board of Directors. He reported for us on the move of his church, the Unitarian Universalist Church of Greater Lansing. Mike is also a financial donor to East Lansing Info; join him today.
Caitlin Leppert has served as an at-large reporter for ELi, reporting on such diverse topics as MSU's ban on tobacco, a stigma-fighting poet's performance at the Art Festival, and post-game problems at Cedar Village, among many others.
Mara Logan reported for us on the ELHS girls swim and dive team, along with Jill Kammerer.
Peyton Lombardo graduated from Michigan State University having studied in the field of Media and Information. She was very involved in MSU Athletics, as both a student manager for the women's basketball team and a sales and marketing intern at sporting events. She plans to work in the sports and entertainment industry. In her free time, Peyton is a big moviegoer, loves to bake, and tries to stay active through hiking, biking, and golfing. She is an avid traveler after having spent a semester in Europe and hopes to travel to more places soon (South Africa, Dubai, and Tokyo are on the top of her list). Her favorite part about writing for ELi is being able to cover local events and get involved in the East Lansing community outside of MSU. For ELi's readers, Peyton has covered everything from events at Schuler Books to our mounted deputies to a local bee rescue group to the Lansing Area women's soccer league to Art for Charlie.
Elaine Loomis, a resident of the Whitehills Neighborhood and a student at East Lansing High School, reported on ELHS students raising money for breast cancer awareness for our Random Acts of Kindness series.
Robert Mavrogordato, a nurse who works at Sparrow Hospital, is a resident of the Glencairn Neighborhood and an honorary resident of the Oakwood Neighborhood. He has reported for ELi on the local appearance of entovirus and our new recycling program. He also reported on a long-time resident's legal limbo with regard to immigration. Bobby is also a financial donor to ELi; join him today.
Rebecca McAndrews served as ELi's first Schools reporter. Her numerous reports included stories on the cooperation among our elementary schools, the School Board race of 2014, and fundraising by musical ELHS students.
Emma McGinn reported for ELi while being a student at MSU. She wrote about so many local events and developments for us, including Max's Race, Yoga at the Broad, performances by local rapper L Soul, and a new initiative on disputed parking tickets. Using her MSU student perspective, she also covered the history of the Howland Co-Op, community perspectives on Fall Welcome, and efforts by an MSU student to broaden recycling options.
Jeanette McWaters helped us out during the 2017 City Council race by providing profiles on the candidates. She also reported for us on the TIF-funded repairs to the M.A.C. garage and reported on a fundraiser for a new LGBTQ area resource center.
Coleen Moyerbrailean came to East Lansing in 1986 as a grad student in the MSU College of Education. She and her husband Todd and son Gregory settled in the Bailey neighborhood. (Coleen still misses that first house.) When daughter Anne was on the way, the family moved to a larger home in the Glencairn neighborhood. Greg and Anne attended Glencairn Elementary, MacDonald Middle School, and East Lansing High School. Today, Coleen and Todd are happy empty-nesters! They enjoy biking, skiing, being with friends, and visiting their children. Coleen loves writing for ELi and is also employed by Odd Fellows Contracting in Williamston, Michigan, as a kitchen and bath designer. Coleen has provided many informative reports for ELi's readers, ranging from reports on MSU Police's Anti-Bias and Inclusion Unit, to our district's sex ed curriculum, to the Burcham Road solar project, and beyond. Coleen is also a financial donor to ELi; join her today.
Ginger Ogilvie is a resident of the Southeast Marble neighborhood and is widely credited with spurring the idea for Hidden River Park. She is active in the community, including in East Lansing Public Schools, and reported for us on Walk & Roll Safety Day.
Tom Oswald, retired from a long and distinguished career in media relations at MSU, reported for us on the Peace Education Center's honoring of local peacemakers and MSU's plans for intergenerational housing.
Justin Padgett is a manager of intake, scheduling, and technology with the Michigan Administrative Hearing System, and a resident of East Lansing. He is a proud father of three, and passionate about being fiscally responsible. His first article was on East Lansing’s property taxes being among the highest in the state.
Heather Paris started work as a reporter for ELi in October 2015. Heather considers herself a conduit for bringing information to others. She has a history in the world of words, including editing scripts and stories, writing website content and participating in writing workshops. Paris is a lifelong learner, always interested in learning new things and mastering new skills. A Michigan transplant from Iowa, she earned her B.A. at The University of Iowa in Communication Studies with an emphasis on writing. She produced short films and a TV spot while in college, using now-ancient technology. While putting herself through college, she spent her spare time gleaning inspiration from visiting authors and poets. In recent years, she has been involved in the local art scene, stand-up comedy, and social justice work. She lives with her family in Okemos, determined to survive the Michigan winters in order to enjoy the bounty of Michigan summers and all the outdoor opportunities the state offers. Anywhere near water or books is her happy place. Heather's reporting for ELi has included stories on visiting authors, on East Lansing's intergenerational mural, on the Firecracker Foundation, and on the Potters' Guild. Heather is also a financial donor to ELi; join her today.
Richard Pfister took seriously our invitation to report on what you see around you when he reported on the Orchesis Dance group's annual performance. (Pfister's wife is a professor of dance at MSU.)
Andrew Pomerville, pastor of Peoples Church, reported for ELi on local seasonal beer options.
John Paul Roboski graduated from East Lansing High School in 2018 and was also a graduate of our first Summer Youth Journalism Program. His reporting for ELi included covering local organizations fighting hunger, the Beatles special at the annual Collage extravaganza, the ELHS band's annual tour of elementary schools on Halloween, and more. John Paul is now attending Grove City College.
Julie Rojewski lives with her family in East Lansing in the Southeast Marble Neighborhood. She has written widely both for work and for fun, and for ELi, she likes writing stories about the people and events that make her appreciate that we live in a great place with incredibly interesting people. In her essay on why she writes for ELi, Julie remembered that she realized when she found ELi that she "no longer had to rely solely on social media to piece together why this particular legislation was pursued, or a neighborhood potluck to help me understand the history behind a different community effort." Her reports for our readers have included everything from benefit concerts at Peoples Church to local "freecyclers" to the story of an East Lansing family that has adopted three children from Haiti. Julie is also a financial donor to ELi; join her today.
Maureen Rojewski is ELi's youngest reporter so far. As a third-grader at Marble Elementary School, Maureen reported for us on her Girl Scout Troop's fundraiser to help the homeless. (We allowed her more exclamation points than we usually do.)
Ken Rosenman, a physician specializing in occupational and environmental medicine, is faculty at MSU and a member of East Lansing's friendly co-ed soccer group, a group ELi loves to mine for reporters and donors. For ELi's readers, Ken has explained an air quality lawsuit against BWL and why asbestos is a concern for workers, including our City workers.
Tamiko Rothhorn has reported for ELi on Fiddle Scouts, a group that seeks to introduce children to folk music.
Shannon Schmoll is Director of MSU's Abrams Planetarium and a resident of Okemos. She reports for ELi on local astronomical opportunities, including meteor showers and the transit of Mercury. She also provided a special report on East Lansing's astronomical connection to Chile. Shannon is a financial donor to ELi; join her today.
Robert Shelton, long-time faculty at MSU's Lyman Briggs College, reported for our readers on Naomi Klein's presentation at the Wharton on climate change.
Eliot Singer, a retired folklorist and local politics researcher, reported for ELi on major properties downtown changing hands. A long-time Chesterfield Hills resident, Eliot currently resides in Traverse City.
Anna Lynn Slocum grew up in Muskegon, Michigan, and graduated from Mona Shores High School in 2015. After being a Spartan for a year, she transferred to Lansing Community College to earn her Applied Associate's Degree in Environmental Technology. A musician, Anna also paints, collects books, and is a firm supporter of the arts and of the East Lansing Community. Her reports for ELi's readers have covered the One Book/One Community project, the Summer Solstice Jazz Festival's second line parade, Pumpstock, and indoor gardening.
Sarah Slocum, a head comrade of the Oakwood Neighborhood, has reported for ELi on her neighborhood's assertion of its boundaries.
Dudley "Smitty" Smith was ELi's first Managing Editor. A resident of the Bailey Neighborhood, he is also founder and organizer of the Pump House Concert Series and Pumpstock.He's reported for ELi on many topics, including on the Keys in the City pianos and MSU's protected woodlots. Smitty is also a financial donor to ELi; join him today.
Angela Sorrells was one of ELi's first reporters. She reported for our readers on MSU's Impact Radio, on Dave Rosin's jazz trio, and on Safe Halloween. Angela has also been a financial donor to ELi; join her today.
Melissa Sortman works in the field of education and lives in the Glencairn Neighborhood. Melissa reported for ELi on the painting of the Valley Court steps. (See the result.) She has also been a financial donor to ELi; join her today.
Aron Sousa is a physician and medical educator in Michigan State University's College of Human Medicine. He has served as Senior Associate Dean for Academic Affairs for about a decade and for a year as the College's Interim Dean. Aron is known locally for his healthy obsession with redwoods, and at ELi, he mostly writes about the natural world, including local astronomy, hail storms, birds, butterflies, mammary-shaped clouds, and mosquitoes. With twenty-years' experience as a gardener in East Lansing's Oakwood neighborhood, he also occasionally shares his green thumb-wisdom with ELi's readers, as in his article providing conifer sex ed. Aron is the life partner of ELi founder Alice Dreger and volunteers his work at ELi, often getting tapped for seasonal articles like his Thanksgiving report on turkeys and his explanation of our uneven autumnal equinox. His editors sometimes think twice about his proposed headlines, as with "East Lansing Hopes to See Uranus This Week." Aron is also a financial donor to ELi; join him today.
Samuel Sprague is a multi-instrumentalist and has played in many local groups over the years. He releases solo music under the moniker Morning Mesh via Tape Hiss Music, a DIY cassette label based in East Lansing run by himself and friends. Sam has studied Multimedia Arts Technology as well as Philosophy at Western Michigan University. As a roving music scene reporter for ELi, Sam has covered events at The Record Lounge, The Whiskey Lounge, and Mac's Bar, to name a few.
John Stauffer, Executive Director of Helping Hands Respite Care, contributed to ELi by explaining his organization's service to the community.
Ruelaine Stokes reported for ELi on the Dead Poets Contest at East Lansing's Dublin Square.
Sheila Taylor, a well-known and very active member of the East Lansing community, has reported for us on Corey Cafagna Park and on the work of the Friends of the East Lansing Public Library, of which she is a member. Sheila is also a financial donor to ELi; join her today.
Michael Teager is a self-professed political junkie who was happy to exorcise his demons through his reporting for ELi while he lived in East Lansing. (We miss him now that he lives in Buffalo!) Outside of ELi, Mike was an at-home dad by day and worked remotely for a software firm by night. A professional saxaphonist, he has taught music at Michigan State University and Spring Arbor University. At ELi, Mike covered a wide variety of stories, including proposed security upgrades for City Hall, the relocation of the Bailey ceramics studio, and the re-hiring of the City Attorney. He was also one of our core Council Capsule reporters. Mike is still a financial donor to ELi, all the way from Buffalo; join him today.
Stephen Thomas, faculty at MSU in the natural sciences, is an expert in online education lives with his husband in Chesterfield Hills. Stephen has produced material explaining ELi's mission and methods, including a video explaining why ELi requires money to function. He is currently Vice President of ELi's Board of Directors and has been a steady financial donor to East Lansing Info; join him today.
Alice Fleming Townley lives in Shaw Estates with her family and ministers at the Presbyterian Church of Okemos. She has reported for ELi on the Interfaith Thanksgiving Service and on a local production of "The Giver." Alice is also a financial donor to ELi; join her today.
Michael Townley lives in Shaw Estates with his family and has served on East Lansing's Parks and Recreation Advisory Commission. He has reported for ELi's readers on good places to canoe and kayak in the area. Mike is also a financial donor to ELi; join him today
Robert Victor was Staff Astronomer at MSU's Abrams Planetarium and now frequently contributes astronomy news to ELi. He is retired from MSU but still enjoys providing sky watching opportunities for public and school groups. For ELi, he has reported on group viewing activities, unusual planetary alignments, and more.
Ray Vlasin is Co-Chair of the Harrison Meadows Neighborhood Association and has long been active in East Lansing's community. He currently serves on the Financial Health Team for the City. He reported for ELi on deer encroachment into his neighborhood.
Lucas Walters, a clarinetist and student at ELHS, reported for us on ELHS girls' basketball making it to the State finals and world-class pianist Ralph Votapek playing with the high school Wind Ensemble.
Karley Warwick reported for ELi on the Maker Studio at the downtown Marriott Hotel.
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