The Ithaca Voice is pleased to announce the hire of Matt Butler as our new Education and Public Health Reporter.
Matt moved to Ithaca after graduating from the University of Delaware in 2016. He served as a general assignment reporter for the Ithaca Times until being promoted to managing editor in 2018.
Education is a beat of massive importance in a place like Tompkins County, but has gone largely uncovered in the recent past as the media landscape has changed and specialized beats have fallen by the wayside. Luckily, thanks to the generous support of our readers and our community, the Ithaca Voice has been able to grow our team at a time when newsrooms nationwide are shrinking.
He will now focus on public health and education with the Voice, particularly on the intersection of the two as the COVID-19 pandemic wreaks havoc on reopening plans for higher education institutions and the Ithaca City School District.
“Accountability work is an important function of a news outlet. Every paper in Ithaca covers the city’s annual budget, which came in at just over $80 million for 2020. For context, ICSD’s 2020 budget came in at just under $137 million, but there is no reporter dedicated to covering ICSD. With the addition of Matt Butler, we will finally be able to alleviate that problem,” said Managing Editor Thomas Giery Pudney. “Matt brings years of experience reporting on the Ithaca and Tompkins communities. His existing network of sources, his attention to detail and his work ethic are going to make him a valuable asset to our readers.”
Matt has reported on a wide variety of topics, from development to crime to misuse of public funds to politics. He was recently awarded second place in the Writer of the Year competition by the New York Press Association for his work with the Times in 2019.
“I want to provide the public with a consistent, informative view of what is going on in the Ithaca City School District and the larger education institutions in the area that bolster Ithaca’s economy, especially how they handle a constantly changing public health crisis over the next several months,” Butler said. “I’m enthusiastic to join the Voice team, they do work that I admire at a pace I envy, and I think I’ll be able to add to that. If I can’t, I presume I’ll be promptly fired and return to my pursuit of a career in professional baseball.”
Got a tip for Matt? He can be reached by calling the newsroom at (607) 391-0327 or by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org