The Community Voice is pleased to introduce the newest member of our team, Jazzlyn Johnson, who joins our staff in the Kansas City area as a full-time reporter hired as part of the national Report for America program.

RFA, an initiative of the nonprofit news organization The GroundTruths Project, is a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms to report on under-covered issues and communities.

This year, RFA selected its largest class of reporters with 225 journalists assigned to 160 local news organizations across the country. The Community Voice is pleased to be among a distinguished list of newspapers selected for the program.

Jazzyln, nickname Jazzie, will be assigned to the Kansas City area to report on news of the area’s African-American community. She is a December 2019 Journalism graduate from the University of Montana, and hails from Bowling Green, OH. Her early goals were to become a park ranger, until she took a journalism class during her senior year in high school.

Jazzie is a star, selected as a reporter from a field of more than 1,800 applicants. The national selection team, like our staff, recognized her as a talented writer, a bright and inquisitive soul, and a lover of community.

“We’re excited about having Jazzie on our team and about The Community Voice’s expanded ability to serve the Kansas City community,” says Bonita Gooch, editor-in-chief of The Community Voice. “Kansas City has embraced our publication with open arms, and we’re so pleased to be able to do more to serve and enhance the community

“I’m beyond excited to begin serving Kansas City’s African-American community. My goal is to use my craft to create stories that make positive change for our community,” says Jazzie.

The Report for America newsrooms were selected in December based on a national competition. To win, news organizations described an urgent gap in coverage and a plan to deploy a Report for America journalist to address that gap.

Under the contract, RFA pays for half of the reporter’s salary, up to $20,000 and the local newsroom is responsible for 25% of the reporter’s salary and another 25% is to be raised from the community where the reporter serves. Kansas City area residents can make tax-free contributions to The Community Voice’s RFA fund at www.communityvoiceks.com. Click on “support TCV.”

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