Dawn Burkes and David Carrillo Peñaloza join the Fast Break Desk as assistant editors

Dawn Burkes and David Carrillo Penaloza
Dawn Burkes, left, most recently worked as an assistant editor with the entertainment team. David Carrillo Peñaloza will be moving over from the News Desk.

The following announcement was sent on behalf of Deputy Managing Editor Shelby Grad, Assistant Managing Editor B.J. Terhune and Deputy Editor James Reed:

Dawn Burkes and David Carrillo Peñaloza have been named assistant editors on the Fast Break Desk, the Los Angeles Times’ breaking news initiative.

Burkes has joined the team full time after a temporary role as an assistant editor with the entertainment staff, where she distinguished herself as a nimble editor with a strong command of television, film, breaking news and all things related to superheroes and horror flicks. Burkes has also written for The Times, including an illuminating profile of rap star Eve’s surprising comeback on TV, and flexed her knowledge of “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and its legacy. She started with The Times in December 2020 on the features copy desk.


Previously, Burkes was the editorial and publishing coordinator for Cinestate publications, including managing editor of; a reporter, critic and editor at the Dallas Morning News; and an assistant editor and staff writer at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. She graduated from Florida A&M University with a bachelor’s degree in magazines.

Burkes started with the Fast Break team March 18.

David Carrillo Peñaloza will be joining the Fast Break Desk on June 6 as an assistant editor. He currently works for the News Desk as a multiplatform editor, where he helps coordinate breaking news and edits the homepage. He helped spearhead the launch of Latino Life, a landing page covering the issues, politics, culture and lifestyle of the Latino community.

Carrillo Peñaloza previously worked for Times Community News in Orange County from 2006 to 2021. He served as a sports reporter, sports editor and city editor during his time. In 2020, he helped launch the Daily Pilot’s e-newspaper and TimesOC newsletter, the latter of which he wrote twice a week.

A Cal State Northridge graduate, Carrillo Peñaloza was born and raised in Los Angeles. His work has appeared in The Times, the Chicago Tribune, the New York Times and the Washington Post.