May 6, 2020

For Immediate Release


Jillian Susi

- [email protected]

States Newsroom Launches Tennessee Lookout

Veteran Journalist and Political Expert Holly McCall to Lead Tennessee Newsroom

Nashville, TN — Today States Newsroom, the nation’s leading network of state-based nonprofit news outlets, announced the launch of the Tennessee Lookout. The outlet will be led by veteran journalist Holly McCall, and is States Newsroom’s 14th newsroom and fourth in the South.

Tennesseans face critical issues as rural hospitals close, trade wars threaten farmers and public education systems struggle with budget shortfalls, yet the number of reporters covering statehouse news across the country has plummeted over the last 15 years. According to the Pew Research Center, newsrooms have lost over half of their employees since 2008 – a problem that has only been exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic as 36,000 journalists and staff have been laid off or furloughed since the outbreak.

“In an era when corporations are slashing resources to newsrooms and local coverage is shrinking, we are excited to offer Tennesseans a fresh way to get intensive coverage of local and state issues,” said Holly McCall, editor-in-chief of Tennessee Lookout. “Tennessee Lookout is investing in some of the most talented investigative reporters in the state to arm citizens with the information needed to hold our government accountable.”

McCall is an expert in Tennessee politics and a longtime government reporter. After reporting on city government in Ohio and Missouri, she returned to Tennessee where she covered commercial real estate/development and public affairs for the Nashville Business Journal and later served as political analyst for WZTV Fox 17. McCall has also worked in communications for various Nashville government agencies as well as for two presidential campaigns.

She leads a team of award-winning and locally renowned journalists dedicated to covering healthcare legislation, government reform, education, mental health and addiction treatment, criminal justice reform, climate change, and the developing coronavirus pandemic.

“Our vision for state journalism is to make sure that no matter where you are or where you live, you have access to the most accurate and high quality reporting.” said Chris Fitzsimon, Director and Publisher of States Newsroom. “Especially in times of crisis, newspapers and journalists are needed more than ever to provide accurate information that can potentially save lives.”

Previously, Fitzsimon founded and led NC Policy Watch, North Carolina’s leading news and commentary outlet, before launching what was to become States Newsroom in 2017.

States Newsroom is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that is funded exclusively by the generous contributions of readers and philanthropists. States Newsroom is committed to supporting fact-based, non-partisan news to the public at no cost and ad-free.

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