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for people who care about the West

Meet our new intern and fellows


During our publication break, which just ended, we bid a fond farewell to former intern Bryce Gray, who wrapped up his session at the end of June. He’s now the full-time energy and environment reporter at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Congrats to Bryce, and even more to the Post-Dispatch: Y’all have landed yourself a fine journalist!

Now we’re welcoming Anna V. Smith for six months of “journalism boot camp.” Anna, 23, spent much of her childhood in Oregon’s Willamette Valley, climbing trees, exploring gullies and replanting and nurturing more than 5,000 Douglas firs with her family, often knee-deep in mud during torrential rains.

She left rural Oregon in 2010 to attend the University of Oregon in Eugene, where she majored in environmental studies and journalism. She helped start the campus’ first environmentally focused publication, Envision, a student-run print and online magazine, serving as web editor from 2012 to 2014, and covering the rural-urban divide regarding wolf reintroduction.

Anna often felt pulled between science and writing, but an internship in Central Africa in 2013 with the Smithsonian Institute’s Gabon Biodiversity Program convinced her that she preferred writing about science to conducting it.

After graduating in 2014, she began reporting for Eugene Weekly, where she wrote about local struggles with homelessness and affordable housing as well the native bee decline. She discovered HCN in college and saw it as an ideal blend of social, economic, cultural and scientific coverage, all under the umbrella of Western environmental issues.

Although she misses watching pods of orcas from her deck, Anna looks forward to covering wildlife and recreation for HCN. She might even squeeze in some time to explore the surrounding mountains and canyons. Or so she hopes. Welcome, Anna!

Somehow, we managed to trick our other recent intern, Lyndsey Gilpin, into sticking around for another six months as an editorial fellow. The hissing rattlesnakes we surrounded her desk with may have influenced her decision, but we’re sure it was genuine enthusiasm for the job. Congrats, Lyndsey! (It’s safe to come out now; the snakes are gone.) She joins Anna and our current fellow, Paige Blankenbuehler, through December at the magazine and website.

A few corrections: In our recent feature on Oregon’s terminal waterways, we misidentified the birds in a photo, calling them barn swallows when they were most likely cliff swallows (“Water to dust,” 6/13/16). And the ancestors of Stacy Bare, profiled in our annual Outdoor Recreation issue, were given land in West Virginia, not Pennsylvania. Our apologies.