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Reporter Karen Garcia joins the Utility Journalism Team

Portrait of Karen Garcia
Karen Garcia previously worked for the San Luis Obispo New Times, where she has covered a little bit of everything over the last five years, including immigration, social justice and the fishing industry.

The following announcement was sent on behalf of Utility Journalism Team Editor Matthew Ballinger:

I am delighted to announce that Karen Garcia is joining the Utility Journalism Team as a reporter. Garcia will report and write articles and create other work that meets the information needs of Southern Californians. That will include explainers and service journalism off the news; contributions to ongoing Utility Team projects, such as Unshaken, Hollywood careers, mental health and more, as well as work that she will originate.

Garcia joins us from the San Luis Obispo New Times, where she has covered a little bit of everything over the last five years, including immigration, social justice and the fishing industry. She followed a family of five whose parents were deported, leaving the eldest daughter to care for her siblings; reported extensively on substandard housing conditions at a Paso Robles apartment complex where the majority of tenants were undocumented; and she covered how recent regulatory changes have affected Morro Bay crab fishermen. Before the New Times, Garcia was a reporter at KCBX Central Coast Public Radio, an NPR affiliate.

Garcia, who speaks Spanish, grew up in the South Bay, where her parents and siblings still live. She received an associate’s degree at El Camino College before earning her bachelor’s degree in journalism at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo. She misses the wide variety of restaurants in the South Bay and is eager to upgrade from a beach cruiser to something with gears for rides along the Marvin Braude Bike Trail. She starts July 26.


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