Upcoming Conference | 2019 Re-Wire Policy Conference, Dec 10, 2019 Register

Q&A with new wire reporter, Sara Gentzler

We’re excited to announce that we have a new addition to our reporting team at the Washington State Wire!

Sara Gentzler has joined us as a reporter for the site. She comes to us from The Evergrey and Reviews.com. She is already doing great work for us at the Washington State Wire, and we’re honored to have her join our team.

The Washington State Wire: Tell us about yourself!

“I grew up in Nebraska and moved out to Seattle three years ago. I’ve written mostly web content and at a daily Seattle newsletter called The Evergrey. I went to Creighton University in Omaha. I was really active in their journalism program there. That was my major, journalism: news and PR. While I was there I also got really into multimedia storytelling, so I think that’s super interesting as far as using different mediums to distill really complicated stories. It’s what I really find fascinating about opportunities in online journalism. While I was at Creighton, I did the Backpack Journalism program, which is filming and producing documentaries and that was really wonderful and prepared me well.

Since graduating, I’ve worked in PR at a couple non-profits, I worked at the Evergrey as I said, and Reviews.com, but what I really like to do workwise is intellectually challenging work and then try to help people understand it in a more accessible way. That is why I was excited about this job.

 I don’t think you could ever master [journalism]. It’s always changing because the readership changes, the tools you can use change, and there’s always more opportunities to get better at it.”

What got you into journalism?

“I’ve always loved storytelling and talking to people and getting to know people. I think that translates into getting to know issues too. I just really like the piece of journalism that lets you explore; you dive deep and then you kind of get to get good at something that you’re passionate about and move on to the next thing. There’s these endless things to explore and learn more about and then teach people about. That is what originally got me into it, but so did that Backpack Journalism program when I made the documentary. Journalism just opens a lot of doors for building skills, but also getting to know cool people and places and issues.”

What are you passionate writing about?

“Most classically, throughout my time as a writer, I’ve been most passionate about writing about child development actually because I think it plays a big role in everyone’s lives, but I also love work that helps engage people with issues that are important. At The Evergrey, I wrote little things like voting guides and about what was going on with the smoke in the Seattle sky. Stuff like that helps people understand the world around them and how it works. Broadly, I think that encompasses my child development interest, but also state government. It’s where a lot of the action happens and I think a lot of people don’t understand it. There’s such an opportunity to help people understand the stuff that’s actually impacting them and what they can do to engage in that.”

Why did you decide to write for the Washington State Wire?

“I see it as an opportunity to write meaningful things and challenge myself to dive into really complex topics and like I said, to get people engaged in the world around them in ways that are actually informative and productive.

I’m excited that since I live in Olympia, I get to be where the action is during next session, and I’m ready to tackle the challenges that come with that.”