Keri Blakinger, Brennon Dixson join California reporting staff

Portraits of Keri Blakinger and Brennon Dixson side by side
Keri Blakinger, left, covers the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. Brennon Dixson reports on Black communities in Los Angeles.
(Los Angeles Times)

The following announcement was sent on behalf of Deputy Managing Editor Hector Becerra:

I’m pleased to announce that Keri Blakinger and Brennon Dixson have joined the Los Angeles Times’ California reporting staff.

Blakinger covers the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. She has already distinguished herself with out-of-the-gate reporting, publishing an investigation a week after she started with colleague Connor Sheets on pharmacies in Mexico selling counterfeit prescription pills laced with stronger and deadlier drugs and passing them off as legitimate pharmaceuticals.


Before coming to The Times, Blakinger spent three years as a Texas-based reporter at the Marshall Project, where she covered prisons and death row. She was the organization’s first formerly incarcerated reporter and author of “Inside Out,” a recurring column co-published with NBC News. Before that, she worked at the Houston Chronicle, where she was part of the newspaper’s Pulitzer-finalist team that covered Hurricane Harvey. She has also worked at the New York Daily News and the Ithaca Times, and her 2019 piece on women’s jail for the Washington Post Magazine helped earn the publication a National Magazine Award.

Before getting into journalism, she did time in New York for drugs, an experience that formed the basis of her critically acclaimed 2022 memoir, “Corrections in Ink.” Blakinger has a bachelor’s degree in English from Cornell University. She started in January.

Brennon Dixson covers Black communities in Southern California. He most recently was with the Pasadena Star-News, where he covered City Hall, the surrounding San Gabriel Valley and the Rose Parade. He previously worked at the Santa Clarita Valley Signal and the Santa Monica Daily Press. While at the Signal, he received a Golden Quill Award from the California School Boards Assn. for his reporting on five public school districts in the region.

Dixson graduated from Cal State Long Beach, where he was selected for the Chips Quinn Scholars Program for Diversity in Journalism shortly before receiving his degree in 2017. When he’s not reporting, you can find Dixson wandering around tide pools or hiking with his two husky-shepherds. Gardening and gaming are other hobbies outside of work. He also started in January.