Building on the independent media company's four decades of experience reporting on the Midpeninsula, the Redwood City Pulse will provide the city with professional journalism and community information.
"Redwood City is dynamic and growing, and we can think of no better place to engage with residents, business owners, nonprofits and government," said Bill Johnson, president and publisher of Embarcadero Media. "When so much is changing in a city, the role of journalism becomes all the more important in order to keep people informed and to be a conduit for helping them to get involved in what's happening in their community."
Veteran journalist Michelle Iracheta will serve as the Pulse editor. She comes to the Bay Area with more than eight years of experience as a journalist, most recently working as a breaking news reporter for the Houston Chronicle. Her work has also taken her to newspapers in Hawaii, Las Vegas and Washington state.
"I'm incredibly excited to explore the Redwood City community and to be part of such a fantastic team here at Embarcadero Media," Iracheta said. "Embarcadero Media, with its commitment to unbiased, professional community news coverage across the Bay Area and its many journalism awards, proved to me the Pulse could successfully expand into Redwood City and provide its residents with trustworthy, impactful, thought-provoking news."
Menlo Park native Leah Worthington joins Iracheta as the lead Pulse reporter. In her prior work covering the East Bay, Worthington has written about everything from dementia and gene engineering to true crime and artificial intelligence. She also helped launch The Edge, a podcast about cutting-edge, often controversial, ideas in science, technology, and society.
To get started, the Pulse team plans to put a special focus on education, housing, development and the city's redistricting plans, among other topics, in the coming months. The publication will be digital only, with no print edition.
Although operating as part of a long-established media company, the Pulse has been given the charge of taking a fresh approach to digital journalism.
"Rather than simply replicating the model of other newspapers, we at the Redwood City Pulse have the unique opportunity to try something new — to grow and shape ourselves to meet the needs of Redwood City's residents and workers," Worthington said. "Everyone I've spoken with, from government officials to local activists, has already been incredibly forthright and welcoming, and I look forward to continuing to connect with our future readers and share their stories."
In addition to a website, the Pulse will produce a daily newsletter, Express, a free daily email that gives a quick rundown of the top stories and upcoming events. A Spanish-language version is planned; both Iracheta and Worthington are bilingual.
In the weeks leading up to the Pulse launch, Iracheta and Worthington have been meeting with as many local leaders and community members as possible. Embarcadero's marketing team has been connecting with key local business leaders, whose support in the form of institutional sponsorships will be important to the site's success, as will membership from readers.
"I've learned a great deal about Redwood City and its robust and diverse community through my many conversations with key community leaders," Iracheta said. "The city has changed dramatically in recent years through its collaboration with local nonprofits, various industry leaders and by being open to healthy public discourse. The city has welcomed new diverse voices to the council. It has acknowledged the rich history of the many cultures that contribute to its growth. I can't wait to continue learning about Redwood City in the coming months."
The public can reach Iracheta and Worthington at [email protected] Readers can sign up for Express, the free daily newsletter, at RWCPulse.com.