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Wednesday, June 19, 2024
The independent student publication of The University at Buffalo, since 1950

The Spectrum elects 2023-24 editor-in-chief

Grant Ashley wins election with focus on digital presence, email newsletters and social media

The Spectrum editorial board elected Grant Ashley, a junior political science and Spanish major, as its 2023-24 editor-in-chief this past Monday.

Ashley is in his second semester as a managing editor at The Spectrum, having previously been an assistant news/features editor for one semester and a senior news/features editor for two semesters. He also has experience working at news stations WBFO and WIVB, creating both radio and written content.

Matt Parrino, a former Spectrum editor-in-chief and current faculty adviser, is excited to see Ashley in his new role.

“He’s super curious and he keeps the most important part of journalism, which is [to] seek truth and report it, at the heart of everything he does and he sets such a great example for other people in the office,” Parrino said. “He’s just very kind and approachable, which I think in that role, it’s super important.”

As new editor-in-chief, Ashley is looking forward to bringing two newsletters per week via email and a podcast to the table, honing in on producing digital content for students.

“I think we’ll be able to reach a lot of new people in a lot of new ways,” Ashley said. “People will get their UB news faster and more easily. You can tell a lot of cool stories with video and audio, so I’m excited to do that too.”

He also hopes to create a larger social media team in order to build The Spectrum’s digital presence to produce more engaging content. 

Anthony DeCicco, The Spectrum’s current editor-in-chief, applauded Ashley’s platform of transitioning to a digitally-focused publication.

“I think Grant’s emphasis on digital media and where journalism is going and not focusing on where it’s been in the past — I think it’s awesome,” DeCicco said.

DeCicco “couldn’t be any happier” to leave his role to Ashley. He says Ashley has all the qualities and experience to successfully run the paper.

“It’s been great to see him grow as a journalist,” DeCicco said. “Grant worked extremely hard to get where he’s at. I expected this from him all along, so it doesn’t surprise me.”

The Spectrum’s assistant managing editor, Andrew Lauricella, echoes DeCicco’s sentiment, calling Ashley “one of the best journalists I’ve ever met.”

“His attention to detail in his stories and his reporting is just always outstanding,” Lauricella said. “He always goes above and beyond, not only as a writer and a reporter, but also as a mentor, and I think that’s really going to help him shine in his role.”

Ashley shows appreciation to his peers and professional mentors who have helped him along the way. He’s looking forward to seeing his visions become a reality.

“It is nice to see that people see the work I’m doing,” Ashley said. “I feel very strongly about my visions for the paper, so it was exciting that people agreed with me and that was the direction we should go.”

Katie Skoog is a features editor and can be reached at katie.skoog@ubspectrum.com

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