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Nicole Dahmen, Ph.D.

Nicole Dahmen

Co-Founder and Co-Director

Nicole is an associate professor who has gained a national and international reputation for her scholarship, which falls into three key areas, sometimes standing alone but more frequently intersecting: visual journalism, ethics, and contextual reporting. In sum, her research seeks to advance public-interest journalism—reporting that holds the powerful accountable, elevates underrepresented voices, and makes a positive impact in society. She holds a Ph.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Brent Walth

Brent Walth

Co-Founder and Co-Director

Brent is a University of Oregon alum and a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter with more than 30 years of experience. A native of Oregon, Brent has worked as staff writer and managing editor for Willamette Week; Oregon State Capitol correspondent for the Eugene Register-Guard; and as Washington, DC correspondent, and senior investigative reporter for The Oregonian. He is also the author of Fire at Eden’s Gate: Tom McCall and the Oregon Story, a portrait of the state’s most influential governor.

Kathryn Thier

Kathryn Thier


Thier is a doctoral student at the University of Maryland Communication. Previously, she was a UO instructor and Snowden internship coordinator. Also a reporter, she has demonstrated her success in getting students to produce solutions journalism stories while becoming a nationally-recognized leader in teaching solutions journalism.

Todd Milbourn

Todd Milbourn

Engagement Director

Todd Milbourn is an investigative reporter, instructor, and director of the University of Oregon’s master’s program in journalism. His teaching and research focuses on how journalists can earn trust, engage with communities and uncover information that helps citizens make informed choices in a democracy. Todd runs the engagement research and field work for Catalyst.

Photo Of David Markowitz

David Markowitz

Data Director

David Markowitz is an Assistant Professor in the SOJC. He uses language data from natural repositories to make inferences about people, such as what they are thinking, feeling, and experiencing psychologically. His work has appeared in the Journal of Communication, Communication Research, and the Journal of Language and Social Psychology. He received his Ph.D. from Stanford University and his undergraduate and master’s degrees from Cornell University. Dave runs our Catalyst Data Project.

Emmanuel Maduneme, Doctoral Student

Emmanuel Maduneme

Emmanuel Chinezube Maduneme is a doctoral student at the SOJC. He is also a broadcast journalist and scholar whose research interest is at the intersection of message effects, solutions journalism, and African media. He’s on the research and project team at Catalyst. 

Jael Calloway


Jael Calloway is a senior majoring in journalism. Since joining the SOJC, she has written and edited for multiple publications, including the Daily Emerald and Black Student Magazine. As a journalist, Calloway works towards her goal of elevating voices that are often unheard. She enjoys baking, reading and cuddling with her dog in her free time. Jael is on our student reporting team.

Anna Kaminski


Anna Kaminski is a senior journalism major with a minor in legal studies. She’s been reporting since she was 15 years old. Over time, she’s become particularly interested in covering ongoing social issues and their impacts on local communities. In her free time, she likes to read, collect old CDs/records and watch the latest movies. She’s on the Catalyst student reporting team.

Shane Hoffmann


Shane Hoffmann is a senior SOJC major with a background in sports reporting. Since joining the Catalyst team, he has reported on food insecurity and education amidst the pandemic, COVID-19 cases within the UO Athletic Department and more. In his free time Shane enjoys sports, cooking and traveling. Shane is on our student reporting team.

Photo Courtesy Of FilmPac

Jassy McKinley


Jassy McKinley is a senior with a focus in multimedia journalism. She’s skilled in different forms of journalism with a focus on broadcast, documentary and investigative work. McKinley hopes to make an impact with her work, no matter how small. She enjoys creative photography and binge watching documentary films. Jassy is on our student reporting team.

Skyla Patton


Skyla Patton is a double duck with the SOJC, graduating first with a BA in 2020 and now pursuing her master’s in journalism to graduate in 2022. While her background highlights writing and editing with a concentration reporting on the cannabis industry, she is working towards a multimedia focus as she learns the ropes of photography and tells the stories of individuals through engagement and smiles. In her free time Patton enjoys reading in her hammock, looking for rocks and exploring in the great outdoors with her camera. She is on our student reporting team.

Heidi Stevenson

Research Assistant

Heidi Stevenson is an undergraduate research assistant who is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in media studies
at the University of Oregon. Outside of the School of Journalism and Communication, she is working towards a minor in sociology. Heidi is excited to be gaining research experience at Catalyst.

Cole Sinanian


Cole Sinanian is a senior majoring in journalism and music. He’s especially interested in environmental journalism, but he’s reported on a wide range of topics including housing, land-use, energy, business, food and mental health. When he has free time, Cole likes reading, cooking, hiking and listening to jazz music. Cole is on our student reporting team.

Winter Wagner


Winter Wagner is a journalism major in her senior year. Having loved writing and photography from a young age, she channels those passions into her reporting. She also specializes in social media work. Outside of the classroom she is the social media manager for a Portland-based nonprofit. Winter is on our student reporting team.

Elizabeth Yost

Web Developer

Elizabeth Yost is a sophomore majoring in journalism with a minor in computer information technology. Since childhood, she’s nurtured a love for writing. She’s interested in utilizing technology to create accurate and interactive stories. During her free time, she enjoys reading, playing video games, and spending time with her cat. Elizabeth is our web developer.

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