CCJ Reports

About CCJ

The Center for Collaborative Journalism is a partnership among Mercer University’s Journalism and Media Studies program, The (Macon) Telegraph, Georgia Public Broadcasting and 13WMAZ. Mercer also has its own low-watt television station WMUB and partners with ESPN3 to provide sports coverage and reporting.

 

 

Debbie Blankenship

Director

Center for Collaborative Journalism

Debbie Blankenship studied graphic communications and psychology as an undergraduate and received her graduate degree in Mass Communications from the University of Georgia. At Georgia, she was news editor of the award-winning, five-day-a-week student newspaper The Red & Black. She went on to work for publications in South Carolina and Georgia and won awards in news and feature writing in the annual state press association competitions.

She later worked for former U.S. Congressman Jim Marshall, D-Ga., and specialized in veterans’ issues while continuing to freelance for Macon-area publications.

Blankenship joined the Center for Collaborative Journalism in 2013 as journalist in residence and newsroom coordinator. She coordinated and produced stories for the Center’s first community engagement project, “Macon in the Mirror.” The project won numerous awards including first place in the Community Service category and second place for Best Online News Project. “Macon in the Mirror” also was a finalist for the McClatchy President’s Award for Journalism.

Blankenship currently teaches core journalism-production classes and oversees student work in our partner newsrooms.

 

Meg Donahue

CCJ Project Specialist Meg Donahue

Meg Donahue

Project Specialist 

Center for Collaborative Journalism

Meg Donahue is project specialist at the Center for Collaborative Journalism and helped launch the Center in 2012.

Donahue has been a freelance journalist for over a decade, writing and editing for local, regional and international publications. Her experience encompasses hard news, entertainment, fashion, dining and sports reporting, research and feature writing for publications as diverse as Patch, Atlanta Magazine, Paste Magazine, Newcomer Magazine, Forsyth Herald and John’s Creek Herald.  Donahue has also been active in social media and digital technology for most of her career.
Meg graduated from Georgia State University with a B.A. in Creative Writing. After graduation, she lived in London while interning for Tatler Magazine (the world’s oldest magazine).

 

Engagement Reporter Sonya Green

CCJ Engagement Reporter Sonya Green

Sonya Green

Engagement Reporter

Center for Collaborative Journalism 

Sonya Green joined the Center for Collaborative Journalism at Mercer University as Engagement Reporter. In this role, Sonya works with partners, The Telegraph, Georgia’s third-largest daily newspaper and Georgia Public Broadcasting, the third-largest public broadcaster in the country based on population reach. Prior to this position, Sonya had the honor of being selected for the Knight-Wallace Journalism Fellowship at the University of Michigan where she researched how language, attitudes and approaches in journalism narratives can perpetuate stereotypes about race, class and identity. During her time at the University she delivered keynote speeches, served on panels and moderated discussions on race and media issues.

Before attending the prestigious fellowship, Sonya served as the Interim Assistant General Manager at 91.3 KBCS radio station in Bellevue/Seattle, WA. Green worked at the station for eight years where she also held the title of News Director, Managing Producer and Talk Show host. As the News Director, Green led the station as the station collaborator for the Association of Independents in Radio project, Localore: Finding America. A series produced for the project earned the Katherine Schneider Journalism Award for Excellence in Reporting on Disability, a national award given by the National Center on Disability and Journalism at the Cronkite School of Journalism at Arizona State University. Prior to her public media experience, Green was on the commercial side of things working for local ABC affiliate television stations in Seattle and Denver. She also wrote feature articles for a regional magazine, In the Black, while in Denver.

Sonya is the Board President for the National Federation of Community Broadcasters, NFCB. She is a former media advisory board member for the South Seattle Emerald. She was awarded Woman of the Year by the Bellevue chapter of the Business and Professional Women in 2011 for her professional and personal commitment engaging diverse communities.

 

Amyre Makupson

WMUB News Director Amyre Makupson

Amyre Makupson

WMUB News Director

Center for Collaborative Journalism

Amyre Makupson is the WMUB news director. An eight-year veteran of television news, Amyre has worked nearly every job within the news industry including evening anchor, reporter, producer, photographer and editor. She comes to Center for Collaborative Journalism after spending 4 years serving as a primary evening anchor at a local television news station.

As the News Director at WMUB and the Center for Collaborative Journalism, Amyre will be responsible for managing and instructing journalism students involved with the school’s station, as well as students who are interning at local news affiliates. You will also see her television reports both on WMUB and our media partners though the Knight Foundation.

Amyre is a graduate of Howard University in Washington, DC, receiving her Bachelor’s Degree in journalism in 2004. She went on to complete her Master’s Degree at Wayne State University in Detroit, MI, in 2006, in Communications.

Amyre is from Detroit, MI, where her family still lives. She has one son, Myles. Although an avid Detroit sports fan, she loves cheering on the Mercer Bears.

 

Evey Wilson

CCJ Journalist in Residence Evey Wilson

Evey Wilson

Journalist in Residence

Center for Collaborative Journalism

Evey Wilson in a journalist, photographer, and video producer. She studied Photojournalism and Religion at the University of Georgia and then worked as a photojournalist at a small, family-owned newspaper in Northern Indiana. Wilson got her Master’s from UNC-Chapel Hill as a Roy H. Park fellow, studying short documentary filmmaking and web design to give herself more tools to tell stories for the web. She made films for the Southern Coalition for Social Justice and was recruited to work on a national criminal justice campaign for the AFL-CIO. Wilson spent nearly three years in Washington, DC working as a producer at the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting where she shot short documentary films, facilitated education programs, curated exhibits in DC and New York, designed their most popular e-book Flight from Syria, and launched and grew our Instagram to more than 60k followers. For the past two years, she has freelanced in the Southeast, working for clients like the New Yorker, WABE, and Instagram.

 

Adam Ragusea

CCJ Journalist in Residence Adam Ragusea

Adam Ragusea

Journalist in Residence

Center for Collaborative Journalism

Adam Ragusea is journalist in residence at Mercer University’s Center for Collaborative Journalism.

Ragusea is “one of public radio’s leading internal critics” (Nieman Lab) and host of the podcast “The Pub” for Current, the public media trade publication. He is often heard reporting stories for public radio shows, including NPR’s Morning Edition and All Things Considered, NPR/WBUR’s Here & Now, APM’s Marketplace, and PRI/WNYC’s The Takeaway. A musician by training, Ragusea also writes about music for such publications as Slate and NME in addition to his work contributing local reports to Georgia Public Broadcasting and The Telegraph newspaper of Macon, Georgia.

Ragusea has earned numerous awards for his reporting, including a 2014 national Edward R. Murrow Award.

At Mercer, Ragusea teaches introductory and advanced journalism and media production classes. Previously, he served as Macon bureau chief for Georgia Public Broadcasting (2012-2014), associate producer/reporter/ host at WBUR in Boston (2008-2012), and announcer/reporter/interim news director at WFIU in Bloomington, Indiana (2005-2008).

Prior to his career in journalism, Ragusea studied music composition at The Eastman School of Music, Penn State, and Indiana University. His chamber work “Jiahu” won Columbia University’s Joseph H. Bearns Prize in Music in 2004. Much of the music Ragusea uses in his radio productions is original, and he continues to create and post music in various forms at soundcloud.com/aragusea.

Ragusea lives with his wife, YA author Lauren Morrill, their baby son Freddie and dog Lucy in the historic Vineville neighborhood of Macon, Georgia.

About CCJ