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The National Trust for Local News comprises a team with diverse perspectives, expertise, and experiences to support community news.


Elizabeth Hansen Shapiro, Ph.D., CEO & Co-Founder 

is a Harvard Business School-trained leading expert on local news business models and organizational change.

Caroline Ross, Chief of Staff

is a social impact strategist who has spent the past decade building and advising organizations that create a more inclusive and just world.

Ross McDuffie, Chief Portfolio Officer

is a performance-focused publishing executive with more than 15 years of experience on the front lines of local news transformation.

Will Nelligan, Chief Growth Officer

is an expert on social enterprise and financial innovation who previously held leadership roles at Anthemis, JFI, and the Robin Hood Foundation.

Cheri Masi, VP of Finance

is a seasoned VP Finance/Controller for public and private companies across industries.She has been a vital resource to both small start-ups and mature, $50 million+ companies.

Amalie Nash, Head of Transformation

develops transformation strategies to drive journalistic impact. She oversaw 250 newsrooms  at Gannett, and held senior editorial leadership positions at the Detroit Free Press and the Des Moines Register.

Orlando Comas, Head of Advertising
leads the field in digital and advertising innovation. He previously held roles at Knight-Ridder and McClatchy, as well as the Miami Herald. 


Rodney Gibbs, Head of Product and Audience
is a leader in product innovation, artificial intelligence, and audience development. He is a sought-after expert in digital transformation and was the first Chief Product Officer with The Texas Tribune.

Caroline Porter, Director of Impact & Strategic Partnerships

is a media strategist, researcher, and former staff reporter for The Wall Street Journal.

Erika O. Carlsen, Deputy Chief of Staff
excels in fostering mission-driven teams and cultures, with notable roles at Coro Northern California, Rockwood Leadership Institute, and Harvard Kennedy School.

Jasmine Weathers, Program Associate

specializes in community engagement, leadership development, qualitative research, and academic writing.


Lisa Borders 

is the former President of the WNBA, CEO and President of Time’s Up, Vice President of Global Community Affairs at The Coca-Cola Company, and President of the Grady Health Foundation. She served as Atlanta City Council President, chaired the Borders Commission for the United States Olympic & Paralympic Committee, and is Founder and CEO of Golden Glow Media. She sits on both Duke University's and JP Morgan's Six Circles Trust Board of Trustees.

Louis Goldstein

is the SVP of Business Operations for Warner Bros. Discovery International. He joined the company in 2011 and has held various roles in strategy and corporate development. Prior to joining WBD, Louis worked at JP Morgan Chase.

Keith Mestrich

served as President and CEO of Amalgamated Bank, America’s largest socially responsible financial institution. Prior to joining Amalgamated Bank, Mestrich served as the Chief Financial Officer and Deputy Chief of Staff for the Service Employees International Union (SEIU). In 2002, he went to work for UNITE, and following the formation of Workers United, he was named the new union’s first Chief of Staff.

Simone Coxe

is the Chair Emeritus, Co-founder and current Director of CALmatters. She is a Director and former Chair of Internews, an international media support organization working in 100 countries,  and has recently joined the board of Human Rights Watch. She serves on the advisory board of the UC Berkeley Journalism School, and she was the CEO and co-founder of Blanc & Otus Public Relations, providing services to the high technology industry from offices in San Francisco, Boston, Austin, Atlanta, and London.

Marc Hand

is a co-founder of the National Trust for Local News and the founder of the Public Media Venture Group, a group of 31 public media entities operating 130 stations.

Mizell Stewart III

is a lifelong journalist and community servant who is President and CEO of Emerging Leaders LLC. Previously, he was a senior news executive for Gannett/USA TODAY Network, Journal Media Group and Scripps and led local newsrooms in Akron, Ohio, Evansville, Indiana and Tallahassee, Florida.


Steve Waldman 

is a co-founder of the Trust and its first board chair. He also co-founded Report for America and founded the Rebuild Local News Coalition.

Fraser Nelson

is a co-founder of the Trust and former Chief Partnerships Officer. She also founded the Community Foundation of Utah and led the historic transformation of the Salt Lake Tribune into a nonprofit newspaper.

Lillian Ruiz 

is a co-founder of the Trust and former Chief Operations Officer. She also founded Ci-X Strategies and co-founded Civil Media Company.

The National Trust for Local News grew out of a concept paper written by Elizabeth Hansen Shapiro and Marc Hand and published in October 2020 by the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics, and Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School. Steven Waldman’s report on “replanting” newspapers, Fraser Nelson’s experience at the Salt Lake Tribune, and Lilian Ruiz’s experience at Civil helped refine the initial plans. The National Trust launched in 2021 with the acquisition of 24 newspapers in Colorado. 

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