Keith HerbertAssistant Managing Editor for InvestigationsKeith.Herbert@newsday.com
I’ve spent most of my career working in local news.
The last few years have given me a unique perspective on local news and its value to readers.
After being at Newsday for more than a dozen years, I recently took a job as an editor with another news outlet that focused on national political news. It was good experience and there was plenty of national news to keep track of.
But I often found myself wondering if the stories I was editing would really resonate with readers.
That’s not the case in local news. There’s no doubt that the stories we do at Newsday, the investigative stories in particular, have impact with Long Islanders. The stories are about things that we know are on the minds of Long Islanders because, as journalists, we’re part of the community and care about Long Island.
It’s much easier in local news to see how our journalism drives change, sparks policy reform and tackles the watchdog role over those in power.
From police accountability stories, to the COVID tracker graphic or education coverage, the feedback we get from readers shows me that our reporting and editing is helping Long Islanders better understand their world and keeps them informed.
The more informed the community is, the better decisions it will make, I believe.
I’m the investigations editor at Newsday on Long Island. I was an investigative reporter at Newsday for six years before becoming an editor.
I was a member of the Newsday team that won the Polk Award in 2020 for “Long Island Divided,” an investigation of housing segregation on Long Island that made use of paired testing. I was the lead reporter on the project and assisted with testing methodology, tester recruitment and test preparation. I served as a producer and primary narrator of the 40-minute documentary that accompanied the investigative stories. The documentary won a Peabody Award.
I have also worked for NBC News digital, the Philadelphia Inquirer and the Morning Call in Allentown, Pa.