About Us

Our mission is to share the lives and amplify the voices of the community–particularly those of the underserved–to remain faithful to editorial independence, to preserve journalistic freedom from corporate and political control, and to reveal the overreach of authority and failure to protect the health of the community by officials and governmental bodies, business interests–both for-profit and non-profit–as well as other dominant institutions.

We want to celebrate the joys and victories in the Central Valley in addition to holding the powerful accountable. We will be reporting on issues relevant and vital to the community, such as housing, the environment, health, the arts, and education. We are just starting out as a grassroots organization. In the future, we hope to partner with a cross-section of journalists and members of the community, in what we hope will be a lasting endeavor.

Emily Brandt | Writer, Researcher | emily@fresnofreepress.com

Originally from Hartford, Conn., Emily has been a resident of Fresno since 1979. As a child, she spent a time in Europe where he father worked as a history professor. She attended Hartford High School. Emily attained a Bachelors degree in English from Geneva College in Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania. Emily was a high school English teacher for nearly 30 years, primarily at Bullard High School in Fresno Unified School District. She taught a broad spectrum of courses from A.P. English to California High School Exit Exam preparation.

Emily worked with the U.S. Forest Service in the Central Sierra for five years. She trained volunteers to repair trails and be custodians of the forest. She was the editor of the High Sierra Trail Crew Newsletter for two years during which she also created a high school club called the Trail Crew Club that took students on wilderness outings like snow-camping and supported the regular work of the HSVTC with painting and restoring bear-boxes at Kings Canyon National Park.

In June 2018, Emily retired from teaching. Since then she has been active in many organizations and projects, such as the Central Valley chapter of the National Lawyers Guild and the Central California Environmental Justice Network. She hopes you will find the next phase of her work interesting and informative.

Hannah Brandt | Editor, Reporter | hannah@fresnofreepress.com

Hannah was born in Belfort, France and raised in Fresno and Berkeley, Cal. She graduated from Roosevelt High School in 1995. Hannah did her undergraduate work at the University of California, Santa Barbara where she received her B.A. in Art History. She attained a teaching credential in Social Science in 2008 from San Francisco State University. Hannah taught high school full time for two years and worked in classrooms as a tutor and substitute for eight years.

Starting in 2014, Hannah explored journalism, interviewing people locally and far away–including a human rights activist in Cambodia and a medical student in Gazaand publishing her articles on Medium. Hannah wrote for the independent newspaper Community Alliance for one year before becoming managing editor of the monthly print and online publication. Her work has been profiled on 88.1, kfcf.org, where she was interviewed and filled in as host for the Community Alliance edition of the radio program Stir it Up.

As editor from the fall of 2015 through the winter of 2017, Hannah coached volunteer writers, led editorial board meetings, and made presentations about Community Alliance. For three years, she managed the social media pages and co-managed fresnoalliance.com with the layout designer. In partnership with the staff and editorial board, she organized two annual fundraisers. With a university librarian, she helped archive 20 years of print editions at California State University Fresno. 

Hannah has taken part in the Pancreatic Cancer Research Walk to raise funds to combat pancreatic cancer every year since 2009. In 2014, she participated in the non-partisan non-profit organization Election Protection to observe the polls to ensure voting rights. Hannah is excited to continue her work in independent journalism in the Central Valley, to listen to and learn from the community, and to partner with her mother.