The Incline

Founding Editor

Pittsburgh, Pa. ・ July 2016 – present

I do a lot here.

Strategy & Impact

Launched The Incline, Spirited Media’s second local news site, on Sept. 13, 2016 and hired news reporters and a photojournalist

Leading and executing editorial and audience development strategies and experiments with agile methodology

News

Covered and planned response to Tree of Life massacre, police shooting of Antwon Rose II, and local and national elections

Editing news, feature and sports articles

Writing SEO-friendly (and not horrible) headlines

Developing stories with reporters, photographers, designers and freelancers

Fostered collaboration

  • HuffPost and The Incline worked on the Listen To America tour to determine “What the driverless vehicles of tomorrow mean for today’s Pittsburgh workers.”
  • 90.5 WESA and The Incline partnered on a live mayoral debate ahead of the 2017 election.
  • Report For America selected The Incline and Billy Penn to host one of its 2018 editorial fellows to cover Pennsylvania’s state government.
  • 100 Days of Appalachia supported an The Incline project on food deserts, after placing in its Pittsburgh Pitch competition.
  • The Incline is PolitiFact’s Pennsylvania partner.
  • Local television, including KDKA-TV and WTAE, and 90.5 WESA

Audience Development

Overseeing daily newsletter production and social media (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram)

Redesigned newsletter to convey values

Utilizing Google Analytics and Parse.ly to track values-based goals and Crowdtangle to follow local trends

Created audience-driven reporting projects and templates for other network sites to implement best practices

  • Since self-driving car companies in Pittsburgh won’t disclose testing locations, we’ve asked readers to tell The Incline when and where they’ve spotted the technology, so reporters could map self-driving cars and break stories about the companies interactions with the community.
  • Peculiar Pittsburgh, powered by Hearken, allows readers to ask questions about Pittsburgh and have reporters investigate the answers.
  • Who’s Next highlights under-40 professionals in Pittsburgh through reader nominations via Google Forms, culminating in a networking happy hour.
  • Brackets seeking reader nominations and voting through Google Forms have helped build our newsletter list.

Membership & Revenue

“Their membership perk is the journalism. The idea is, you can’t get anything else like it in the city, and beyond that, if you get a membership, yes, we have laptop stickers, yes, we have happy hours. But that’s not why people join.”
— Neiman Lab, Aug. 2018

Implemented The Incline’s membership program in early 2018

Created member drives and timely asks with News Revenue Hub

Attended Facebook Membership Accelerator

Working with sales and events staff to host profitable events

Leadership

Hiring newsroom staff and local freelancers

Leading budgeting and goal- and OKR-setting meetings

Created and maintaining a style guide and corrections page

Incline Awards

Biggest blockbuster story: Newsletter subscriptions and pageviews, Hearken’s Champions of Curiosity Awards: ‘What’s up with the monkey balls?’ The story of Pittsburgh’s weirdest tree

First Place Golden Quill, The Press Club of Western Pennsylvania: Lifestyle, Digital, Eating the Turnpike: All of Pennsylvania’s 15 East-West Rest Stops, Ranked

First Place Golden Quill, The Press Club of Western Pennsylvania: Continuing Blog: Four One Brew

Pittsburgh Black Media Federation Vann Award, online business news: Meet the woman behind Black Tech Nation in Pittsburgh

cropped-20286915_10213451618151010_8263703838353990931_o.jpg
It’s 6 a.m. and theincline.com just went live. (Photo by Jasmine Goldband)
Screen Shot 2018-06-11 at 10.02.59 PM
Year 1 took 3 planners.