Newsroom announces new hires

COSTA MESA — Los Angeles Times Community News on Thursday announced a promotion, the creation of a new position and a series of recent hires at the Daily Pilot and its sister publications in Orange County.

Don Leach, a 15-year veteran of the Pilot, was named photo editor for the Daily Pilot, Huntington Beach Independent and Laguna Beach Coastline Pilot. Leach, a Laguna Beach native, had previously served as a staff photographer. He has a bachelor's degree from Cal State Long Beach (CSULB).

"Don has a sharp eye for shooting, editing and selecting photographs," John Canalis, editor of Los Angeles Times Community News South, which oversees the three Orange County newspapers and the OCNow website, said in a prepared statement. "Few people know Newport-Mesa, Laguna or Huntington as well as Don.

"He's a true pro, both online and in print, and our visual presentation will continue to be strong under his leadership."

Also in the photo department, the Pilot rehired longtime photographer Kent Treptow, who worked at the Daily Pilot for seven years before leaving at the start of the 2010 to travel. He has a bachelor's degree from Cal State Fullerton.

Reporter Mike Reicher joined the Daily Pilot in late May. He covers Newport Beach City Hall and serves as the newspaper's special projects reporter. Reicher previously worked as an editor for the Orange County Local News Network (OCLNN), a former media partner of the L.A. Times that folded earlier in the year. Prior to that, he interned at The New York Times. Reicher has a bachelor's from UCLA and a master's from the City University of New York.

Sarah Peters, who had been contributing to the Pilot for several months, has become a staff writer. Peters will serve as a general assignment reporter — a newly created position — covering Newport Beach and Costa Mesa. Peters previously worked as an intern at the Long Beach Press-Telegram and graduated in May from CSULB, where she wrote for the student newspaper, the Daily 49er.

Bradley Zint, who previously worked at the Daily Mirror in Kodiak, Alaska, has joined Times Community News South as a copy editor. Zint also interned at the Press-Telegram and graduated from CSULB, where he was editor in chief of the Daily 49er.

Joanna Clay, a regular freelance contributor to the Pilot, recently became a summer intern. Clay previously contributed to OCLNN and still writes for several online publications. Clay will write news and features, and help expand the Pilot's social media and online footprints.

"This is a talented group of people who are not only passionate about journalism, but also the communities we work so hard to serve," Canalis said. "We are lucky to have them and, in time, I think our readers will feel the same way."

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