Meet the newsroom: Danielle Dunaway, editorial assistant (and holiday elf who makes a mean mac’n'cheese)
Thanks for brightening up our newsroom, Danielle.
For instance, do you know who is responsible for decorating for the holidays?
In our newsroom, Danielle Dunaway (@danielledunaway) took it upon herself to not only put up a Christmas tree and Hanukkah menorah in our reception area, but she crafted garland and snowflakes out of newspapers, too. It makes me smile every time I step out of the elevators.
These are the small touches that brighten our routine work days — and it’s only one part of Danielle’s job as newsroom editorial assistant.
If you’ve ever called our newsroom’s main phone line with a tip or complaint, you’ve probably spoken with Danielle. She also writes various stories; takes photos, updates the Ticker, Botetourt View, So Salem and SWoCo blogs; tweets; and compiles lists of events and announcements, including Your Community Calendar, Names and Changes, the Next 21 Days, and almost all planners and calendars found in the community publications.
Danielle Dunaway: Editorial assistant for the newsroom and community publications
College: Virginia Tech, B.A. Mass Communication; Dabney S. Lancaster Community College, associate degree in General Studies; Virginia Western Community College, where I took one photography class with our lovely Stephanie Klein-Davis.
Why journalism: Back when I was in high school, I had a Live Journal (livejournal.com), where I would blog my “exciting” teenage life, opinions and post pictures. After describing in great detail about an ordeal where I was with a friend who got her car stuck in the mud while trying to covertly drive by a boy’s house, someone commented on the post, saying that I should go into journalism. It stuck with me when it came time to pick a major. It was a brilliant (and probably obvious) observation. I could combine my love of writing with my love of photography to make a living.
Years in journalism: Almost seven years, counting time put in with internships and producing photos for the newspaper and yearbook in college.
Years at The Roanoke Times | roanoke.com: Almost five years. Four years in the editorial department, one year in the newsroom and several years with the community publications.
Other newsrooms where you have worked: Virginian Review in Covington, where I worked as a staff reporter.
Proudest journalism accomplishments: Recently, I went to a Misfits concert in Roanoke. I went out purely to have fun. From my fun spawned an opportunity to have a guest post on the cut’n’scratch blog. I got to write about music and have my photos displayed, both of which are pretty huge to me. I also had a tweet about my blog post retweeted by Misfits Records and the Misfits themselves.
Journalists you admire and why: Jon Stewart. I enjoy his snark and how he presents the news. I also find him trustworthy.
Websites you visit regularly: Aside from Roanoke.com, facebook.com, twitter.com, weather.com, npr.org, huffingtonpost.com, pinterest.com, rollingstone.com, postsecret.com, dearphotograph.com, amazon.com, lifehacker.com, tumblr.com, grumpycats.com and digital-photography-school.com.
Favorite books: “The Perks of Being a Wallflower” by Stephen Chbosky. “Five Against One: The Pearl Jam Story” by Kim Neely. “Virgin Suicides” by Jeffrey Eugenides. “Bossypants” by Tina Fey. All of the Post Secret books by Frank Warren. “I’m a Lebowski, You’re a Lebowski” by Ben Peskoe, Bill Green, Scott Shuffitt and Will Russell.
Favorite movies: “Angus,” “Interview with the Vampire”, “Clerks,” “The Big Lebowski.”
Interests outside of work: Photography, photo editing, collecting vintage cameras, vintage … anything, music, arts and crafts, food, cars, all things Kevin Smith, fashion and cleaning.
Interesting fact about you that few know: I worked for Advance Auto Parts for almost eight years. I’m proud of the fact that I can change batteries, test alternators and starters, and know various facts about diagnosing car troubles.
(Danielle also makes a killer bacon mac’n'cheese, which won top honors in our newsroom’s annual holiday potluck. Find the recipe here.)