Covering Central Oregon with The Bulletin

Currently, I'm The Bulletin's special projects reporter. I focus my reporting on long-term, investigative, data and solutions stories, as well as general assignment projects as necessary. Part of my work includes testing innovative efforts to move The Bulletin's coverage forward, including interactive web graphics and live engagement events with community members.

I started at The Bulletin during summer 2020, when I was a reporter at The Bulletin in Bend, Oregon, through the Charles Snowden Program for Excellence in Journalism, an internship program for Oregon's emerging journalists.

As an intern, I was a general assignment reporter covering everything from wildfires to child care, protests to county fairs. I wrote several stories on an emerging racial justice movement in Central Oregon, and other reporting was used in national coverage of ICE detentions in Bend that were blocked by protesters and later carried out by armed federal agents.

Adult connections, shelter are key to improving houseless graduation rates

Oregon students who spend any part of their education homeless are far less likely to graduate high school than any group of their peers. Despite gains in recent years, the barriers these students continue to face keeps a diploma out of reach for many and perpetuates a cycle of lifelong homelessness.
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Oregon’s low-barrier shelters can offer entry into services

Communities throughout Oregon confronted with rising rents, record growth and historic wildfire seasons are turning to more kinds of shelter options for their unhoused populations, but continue to be limited in what they can accomplish with low housing availability.
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ICE agents detain Bend men as angry crowd protests

A crowd of activists surrounded two buses outside Crane Shed Commons about noon Wednesday in Bend, angry that federal immigration officials had detained two men. An armed officer with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in a flack vest said he would not comment on the actions as he hid his badge. But City of Bend spokesperson Anne Aurand confirmed the presence of the federal officers. About 200 people — faith leaders, supporters of the Black Lives Matter movement and bystanders — gathered
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Fire crews hold destructive fire on Bend's NE edge to 39 acres

Kathy Mathison’s three curly-haired dogs were the first thing in the car Saturday night. While she got them loaded up, her husband, James, got their important paperwork ready to go.
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Central Oregon activist groups seek to educate, inform and welcome

While Central Oregon hasn’t seen seven weeks of nightly protests like those in Portland, activists across the region are continuing to organize in response to national outcries against white supremacy, police brutality and systemic racism. Some groups act through protests, others through community meetings and others still through conversations with police.
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Protest against ICE turns to community vigil one day later

As Campbell Dixon used chalk to draw a heart-shaped outline around the words “love everyone,” kneeling Thursday in a Bend parking lot that had seen so much anger hours earlier, she added her voice to a conversation on racial inequality. She had been there Wednesday, too, standing in the Crane Shed Commons parking lot with protesters who blocked two U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement buses from leaving town with two detained men. She was there that night when authorities used pepper spray to disperse the crowd and drag the men away.

Bend ICE detainees receive thousands in donations after protest

After a tense confrontation between protesters and federal agents Wednesday, donors have raised more than $15,000 for the families of the two men detained by federal immigration authorities. By the Wednesday evening, two GoFundMe pages had been set up in support of the two men, Josué Arturo Cruz Sanchez and Marco Zeferino Rios. "The family is distraught over the treatment of their family member by immigration agents," the page's description says, adding that the arrests were unlawful. The fun

ICE agents detain Bend men as angry crowd protests

A crowd of activists surrounded two buses outside Crane Shed Commons about noon Wednesday in Bend, angry that federal immigration officials had detained two men. An armed officer with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in a flack vest said he would not comment on the actions as he hid his badge. But City of Bend spokesperson Anne Aurand confirmed the presence of the federal officers. About 200 people — faith leaders, supporters of the Black Lives Matter movement and bystanders — gathered

Parts of Camp Sherman under evacuation warnings as Green Ridge Fire doubles

Residents in and around Camp Sherman received evacuation warnings Wednesday from the Deschutes and Jefferson county sheriff’s offices as crews continued to respond to the Green Ridge Fire. A Level 2 “be set” evacuation notice was in place for residences north of Indian Ford Road, east of Green Ridge Road 11 and west of Fly Lake Road. Residents in those areas should leave the area or be prepared to leave at a moment’s notice, according to the sheriff’s offices. The surrounding area, including C

Crook County holds Central Oregon's only fair during pandemic

PRINEVILLE — Frank Rendon might not be able to bring his giant longhorn cattle to any fairs next summer. That’s how he and Kimberly Murphy make their living, operating Ride Hard Entertainment out of Lebanon. In a normal summer, they’ll travel to about 15 fairs and other events to educate visitors about their animals and let kids take a ride on their slow-moving cattle, which can grow to upwards of 1,400 pounds. But this summer, the number of events is down to one: the Crook County Fair.

Alleged bias crime victim sees support as accused disputes charges

Their encounter outside a Bend Red Robin last month lasted only a few minutes, but the argument between Billal Ahmedin and Jeremiah McBride amplified the national conversation about racism in Central Oregon. The Deschutes County District Attorney’s office says Ahmedin, a 31-year-old DoorDash food delivery driver and a person of color, walked into the restaurant June 28 to pick up a to-go order, just as he had several times before. McBride, 36, was a customer at the restaurant bar.

Business still booming as Deschutes County breaks pot sales records

Bucking trends seen in most other economic sectors during the COVID-19 pandemic, marijuana sales continued to surge in June in both Oregon and Deschutes County. The county broke another record last month: In June, the county’s stores and dispensaries sold more marijuana than ever before, totaling nearly $5 million across all product types. That’s an increase of just under 1% from the previous month.

Bend's Shevlin Park an easy entry to runners in need of a trail

Bend’s paved trails, roads and developed parks offer no shortage of routes for runners. For those yearning to find themselves further in the woods and out of earshot of cars and neighborhoods, Shevlin Park is less than three miles from Bend and an ideal starting point for a novice trail runner. The aptly named Shevlin Loop trail is a largely flat 4.6 miles that abuts the Deschutes National Forest with a few short hills spread throughout. The trail is clear — there are a few rocks and roots along the way, but the Bend Park & Recreation District keeps it well maintained.
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