Stop the Presses: Pelham Examiner is Town’s First Student-Run, Student-Owned Paper


The all-student run Pelham Examiner updates its site with news daily.

Nic Franchini, Staff Reporter, Junior

The Pelham community has a new source for local news, and it is being led by the community’s newest set of journalists. Pelham Examiner is a student-run online newspaper, now in its sixth month of operation. Advised by Rich Zahradnik, the paper was founded last June, and features a staff of four main editors and thirty staff writers who work on the paper. They post an average of one article per day, and regularly update their website with profiles, features, and local news about current events in Pelham. Pelham Examiner joins The Pelham Post, Pelham Plus, and PMHS’ own The Pel Mel to present news stories and features of interest to the community.

The Examiner team is led by PMHS seniors Ben Glickman, executive editor, Francesca DiCristofano, managing editor, Daniella Cherner, assistant managing editor, as well as junior Charlotte Howard, who serves as assistant managing editor.

“Before the newspaper was created, I had written articles, but I knew nothing about how to run a newspaper,” said Di Cristofano. “It’s more than just writing and editing. It’s about learning to make the right decisions and being able to balance what the public demands with what your role as a newspaper is.”

Di Cristofano is the main founder of the paper. She made the decision to begin the Pelham Examiner in the middle of her chemistry class during her junior year. From there, she began to rally students from all levels. About 25 students, from fourth to twelfth grade, came together, and in a matter of a month, a brand new news source was created in Pelham.

The paper’s advisor, Rich Zahradnik, is an award-winning author and published journalist. He received his degree from George Washington University and has been a journalist for thirty years. He also writes children’s books in his spare time and teaches journalism to kids. He held many different editorial positions at places including CNN, Bloomberg News, Fox Business Network, AOL, and The Hollywood Reporter. Now, all of those years of experience are going towards helping young children become journalists.

According to Di Cristofano, the Pelham Examiner has hopes of expanding beyond its online format to become a print paper in the coming years, but that remains in the future. Since the day-to-day operations of posting new articles on a daily basis is challenging enough, creating a print edition is an item that’s a little lower on the to-do list for now.