Reporter and video producer Rebecca Rivas is leaving The St. Louis American after 11 years, but her next step will still allow her to collaborate with The American.
Rivas will be writing investigative and in-depth articles on criminal justice, civil rights and immigration for a nonprofit, nonpartisan news outlet that’s launching soon. The outlet, whose name will be announced at the launch, is part of the States Newsroom family dedicated to filling a void in often under-reported news on state government and policy. The Missouri outlet will be the 19th in States Newsroom’s network.
“A lot of outlets have receded their state government reporting,” said Jason Hancock, the outlet’s editor and a former Kansas City Star state government reporter. “We want our work to help those papers that can’t afford to send a reporter to the capitol.”
That’s why the outlet’s articles will be free for newspapers to reprint with attribution, he said. Also joining the team is Rudi Keller, news editor at the Columbia Tribune, who will be covering the state budget and energy. Tessa Weinberg, a former reporter with the Forth Worth Star-Telegram and who previously interned under Hancock, will be covering education and health.
“The St. Louis American and its community have become family to me,” Rivas said. “Under Dr. Donald Suggs’ leadership, the newspaper has long driven the conversation around systemic racism in St. Louis, and it’s been incredible to be part of that for the past decade. This new position will allow me to continue investigating racial equity and inclusion on a statewide level — work I believe will serve this community as well.”
Publisher and Executive Editor Donald M. Suggs said that Rivas will be missed.
“If she had only produced all of our award-winning Salute to Excellence videos or only done breaking investigative news reporting, Rebecca would be challenging to replace. In fact, she has done both as well as anyone in the state,” Suggs said.
“Everyone at The St. Louis American appreciates her substantial contributions to our editorial team, which have helped affirm the value and trust of The American in the St. Louis community and beyond. Although we will miss her, we thank her for her dedication and hard work over more than a decade and wish her all the best and look forward to working with her in her important new position.”
The American has announced a search for a news reporter and expects to make an announcement soon.