Meet our team
Director, business development and community engagement
Peter leads our business development and community engagement initiatives.
Prior to joining the Light, he had a 24-year career in advertising at Boston Globe Media. Peter has deep ties to Greater New Bedford and the local Cape Verdean community. He grew up in Mattapoisett, graduated from Bishop Stang, and earned a bachelor’s degree from Lake Forest College (Illinois).
In 2014, he earned a certificate in Media Leadership from the Maynard Media Academy at Harvard University and the Nieman Foundation. He lives in Winchester with his wife, son and Labrador retriever.
Eleonora Bianchi, a Swiss-Italian journalist, joined the New Bedford Light in 2022 to pursue investigative reporting on inequities and local issues through a multimedia lens.
A May 2022 graduate of the Journalism School at Berkeley, Eleonora previously worked for Swiss Radio and Television, and as an independent reporter at the 2019 G7 in Biarritz following the anti-summit protests.
Back in Europe, she graduated with a degree in human rights and international relations after working in Syria, Iraq and Lebanon to collect testimonies from civilians. Besides her love for traveling as a backpacker, she enjoys photography, and you can probably find her walking around New Bedford with a camera.
Chief executive officer
Lean (pronounced Lee ANN) Camara has worked with mission-based organizations for 20 years, holding various leadership roles at nonprofit organizations where she launched multifaceted initiatives, directed senior executive planning and built consensus among diverse stakeholders. For 11 years, she also operated a community health center consulting firm providing start-up, compliance, and grant-writing services, which secured more than $76 million in funding for clients.
Lean has been an active volunteer (including serving as past chair of its Leadership Council) at the Women’s Fund Southcoast, which is a member of the Women’s Funding Network — the largest philanthropic network in the world devoted to women and girls.
Joanne joined the team at The New Bedford Light in November 2021 as The Light’s office manager and assistant to the publisher. Joanne is an experienced administrative assistant and comes with a multitude of skills. She worked at UMASS Dartmouth for 25 years in administrative roles involving budgets, personnel and clerk of all tasks. Joanne also has experience working in payroll and benefits, and most recently did case management work for the Office of Equal Opportunity for Bridgewater University.
Joanne was raised in Dartmouth, and her extended family has longtime business roots in the greater New Bedford community. She now lives in New Bedford.
Assistant managing editor
David says he was drawn to The New Bedford Light because of its commitment to quality and its mission to enlighten the community and hold those in it accountable.
“Public-service journalism is important, and The Light is a shot in the arm the South Coast needed,” he says. “I’m grateful it exists and proud to be part of it.”
David is a career journalist, having spent almost 30 years at The Standard-Times as a page designer and news, sports, multimedia, website and photo editor. He was lead editor and photo editor on the newspaper’s special section commemorating the return to New Bedford of the Charles W. Morgan whaling ship. He was also photo editor and layout editor for “A Nossa Vida: The Portuguese Experience in America,” a book published by The Standard-Times in 2006.
David, happily married to his wife Mary Joe, says he considers himself lucky to see the ocean every day and tries not to take it for granted.
Arts and culture editor
As the Arts and Culture editor, Toni researches what’s going on throughout the New Bedford area and keeps readers informed of upcoming events.
Toni, a native of Fall River, got her start in journalism as an intern at the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, and went on to work as a custom media assistant for six years at The Standard-Times. She enjoys wearing many hats. Outside of work, she loves engaging in strength training and endurance activities. She also loves music, art, and spending time with her son.
What does Toni like about her work here at The Light? “It is so nice to build relationships with people in the arts and entertainment industries,” she says. “New Bedford has so much to do and the art scene is on fire. I am excited to be a part of this growth. Also, there is so much appreciation for the service we provide, especially to the creative community.”
Grace Ferguson reports on housing for the New Bedford Light. She graduated summa cum laude from Boston University in 2022 with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. While in college, she worked on investigations for WBUR and WGBH, Boston’s public radio stations. She also led a team of campus news reporters for WTBU, Boston University’s student radio station, throughout the pandemic.
Adam Goldstein is the climate and environmental reporter at the New Bedford Light, and a first-year corps member with Report for America. Prior to the Light, Goldstein reported on agricultural policy for the D.C. Bureau of States Newsroom, and on education and environmental issues at the Columbia Missourian. He is a San Francisco native, and an alumnus of both the Missouri School of Journalism and Tulane University.
Arthur joined the Light in 2022, and is now covering New Bedford city government and the Bristol County Sheriff’s Office.
Before the Light, Arthur was a reporter for most of his 25 years at The Baltimore Sun, where he covered features news assignments in Baltimore and around the state of Maryland, and for the National Desk, writing about local culture, characters, food, arts, business, religion, casino gambling, county government, courts and, for one baseball season, the life of Oriole Park at Camden Yards. Before the Sun, Arthur wrote for the New Bedford Standard-Times, the New Hampshire Union Leader. He started his reporting life in broadcasting, with stints as a news person in New Hampshire at radio stations in Laconia and Manchester, then working as a tape editor for the Mutual Broadcasting System outside Washington, DC.
Colin joined The Light in June 2022, where he covers education, child care, city government and more.
Before The Light, Colin worked as a public school teacher in the Mississippi Delta and Brooklyn. Colin has a bachelor’s degree in English from Williams College, a master’s degree in education from Johns Hopkins University, and a master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University. Originally from New York, Colin now lives in New Bedford and enjoys bicycling along the waterfront.
Director of audience
A 15-year veteran in journalism, Brendan has written periodically for The Light since its inception before joining the staff in October 2021. Most recently a freelancer for The Boston Globe and Coach & AD and Training & Conditioning magazines, he spent seven-plus years at The Standard-Times as a sports writer and digital editor. He previously served as sports editor of The Faribault Daily News in Minnesota and editor of The Douglas Budget and Glenrock Independent newspapers in Wyoming.
After growing up in Vermont and New Hampshire, Brendan graduated from Ithaca College with a bachelor’s degree in journalism. He is an eight-time National Newspaper Association award winner, a nine-time New England Newspaper & Press Association winner, the 2017 Gatehouse Sports Writer of the Year and a finalist for the 2019 New England Society of News Editors’ Best in Sports award. He lives in New Bedford with his wife and two children.
Anastasia E. Lennon
Anastasia joined The Light in October 2021, where she covers the fishing industry, offshore wind and police. Before coming to The Light, she wrote about city government, police, the fishing industry and the environment for The Standard-Times. She previously worked at The Patriot Ledger in Quincy.
Anastasia has a bachelor’s degree in history and anthropology from Stony Brook University and a master’s degree in journalism from Boston University, where she taught a writing course for a semester. Lennon is a 2021 fellow with New England First Amendment Coalition’s First Amendment Institute. She’ll always call Long Island, New York, home, but Massachusetts has become a wonderful second home.
Kellen is responsible for online dissemination of news coverage, website design and visual presentation of content at The Light. He also creates The Light’s graphics, illustrations and video assets. He’s worked as a designer, night editor and content producer for five newspapers, including The Standard-Times of New Bedford, The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and The Albany Times Union.
A native of upstate New York, Kellen has learned to love the scenic coastline and ocean waves of New England.
Bobbie is passionate about the power of public service journalism to inform and empower communities. She has seen that power at work as a local news reporter, national political writer, op-ed columnist, newsroom writing coach and news executive.
She is a former managing editor of The Hartford Courant, where she supervised all aspects of content creation and helped lead the Courant newsroom to one Pulitzer Prize and three Pulitzer finalists. As executive editor of Hearst Connecticut Media Group, she oversaw an amalgam of five daily newspapers, more than a dozen weekly newspapers and an array of digital products. She is a graduate of Wesleyan University, where she has taught creative writing and been honored with a Distinguished Alumni Award. She was a Knight Journalism Fellow at Stanford University, and has twice been a Pulitzer juror. She currently serves on the board of the New England First Amendment Coalition, advocating for open government and press freedoms.
She is also an artist whose studio at Kilburn Mill is down the hall from The Light’s newsroom. She is passionate about New Bedford and The Light’s role in illuminating the whole of the community.
Will is a staff reporter for The New Bedford Light, covering housing court, education, offshore wind and the fishing industry. He was lead reporter on the team that founded the news organization in June of 2021.
Sennott graduated from UMass Amherst in 2019, where he studied history and creative writing. Before The Light, he worked for The Vineyard Gazette. Sennott’s reporting has been featured on NPR, The Boston Globe and The New York Times.
Reporter and columnist
Jack Spillane is a career journalist, working primarily as a government and politics reporter and writer.
He has served as a beat and general assignment reporter, columnist, news editor and editorial page editor at community papers in Massachusetts and New Hampshire for 40 years, including at The Standard-Times of New Bedford, The Portsmouth Herald, The Marlboro Enterprise and Lincoln Journal.
Jack has been the recipient of first-place awards from New England press associations for investigative, enterprise, feature, and beat reporting, as well as columnist, editorial page writing and commentary.
He was the recipient of the 2019 Allen B. Rogers Award for his editorial on New Bedford immigrant children being separated from their parents at the border.
Steve, The Light’s founding publisher and president, has extensive experience in journalism, publishing, and operations at The Boston Globe. During his 24-year career with The Globe, he served as a reporter and held positions in operations, production, information technology, administrative services, and labor relations. He became executive vice president of The Boston Globe in 1993, a position he held until January 2001. In 1994, he was co-founder and president of Boston Globe Electronic Publishing, publisher of Boston.com and BostonGlobe.com during the first five years of those sites’ existence.
Now an avid cruising sailor who has sailed his sloop MERIDIAN from Massachusetts to Europe and back via the Caribbean, Steve won several World, North American and U.S. National sailing championships in the 420 and 505 classes in the 1970s, including three world championships in large fleets representing over 20 nations each time.
Editor of The Light
Andy Tomolonis is an award-winning reporter, editor, news columnist and digital producer with 30 years of leadership at community newspapers, metropolitan dailies, national magazines and media websites.
His past experiences include working as a senior editor, manager and content producer at the Boston Herald, the New York Post, the MetroWest News, the Cape Cod Times and numerous regional publications. Most recently, Andy was managing editor for The Standard-Times of New Bedford and its website, SouthCoastToday.com.
Andy’s work at The Light, includes assigning, editing and writing stories; managing reporters, correspondents and photographers; writing headlines; and ensuring quality in all aspects of publication. He also writes The Light’s daily newsletter.
In addition to working at The Light, Andy is a small-scale organic farmer and a nationally recognized gardening columnist and textbook author, who wrote the comprehensive guide to backyard agriculture, Organic Hobby Farming: A Practical Guide to Earth-Friendly Farming in Any Space.
Erick edits investigations, in-depth projects and narrative features for the Light. A former staffer at Boston magazine, Cleveland Magazine and Experience Magazine, he has written about national politics and urban innovation for POLITICO Magazine and about U.S. history for Smithsonian and the Washington Post.
Before joining the Light, he got to know New Bedford while attending the (sadly defunct) New Bedford Folk Festival and reading in the annual Moby-Dick Marathon at the New Bedford Whaling Museum.
Director of advancement
Chrystal Walsh is The Light’s director of advancement focused on individual giving and foundation support.
She worked at the Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-based digital, nonprofit newsroom PublicSource as its director of development for four years. She also fundraised at Mother Jones magazine and KQED Public Broadcasting in San Francisco.
Chrystal is enthusiastic to be back in her hometown of Mattapoisett after two decades away. She has deep generational roots in Greater New Bedford. She serves on the Mattapoisett Master Plan Committee and can often be found bicycling or walking in the area with her husband and two children.
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New Bedford Light is an IRS-determined 501(c)(3) Public Charity; all gifts are tax-deductible. Our EIN number is 86-2407296.
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