OTTUMWA — The Ottumwa Courier newsroom has a new addition to its staff.
Danielle Lunsford, daughter of Debra Docekal of Ottumwa, is the new staff writer covering education at the Ottumwa Courier.
Lunsford, an Ottumwa native, graduated from Ottumwa High School in 2010. Throughout high school, she spent much of her doing volunteer work through Tes Trams sorority. She also served as the president of Students Against Destructive Decisions for three years.
Lunsford furthered her education at the University of Iowa, majoring in Journalism and Mass Communication while minoring in English. In May 2014 she earned a Bachelor of Arts degree and graduated from the College of Liberal Arts. During her time at UI, Lunsford was a member of the Delta Epsilon chapter of Alpha Phi sorority. She continued her volunteer work by participating in FryFest and working to plan Iowa City's annual Summer of the Arts Festival.
Lunsford gained professional experience by working as managing editor for On Campus Sports, a USA Today digital property. In addition to supervising a team of five writers, she also reported on Hawkeye football throughout the 2013 season. She also worked with ESPN to televise Iowa football games, participated in the ESPNU Campus Connection program and worked for Iowa City magazine, Little Village.
Courier Editor Wanda Moeller said having another Ottumwan is a great asset for her newsroom staff. "It's exciting for us to be able to mold and train a young journalist who sees there is an exciting future in print journalism. We're impressed with Danielle, and we believe our readers will be as well."
Lunsford officially started with the newspaper on June 5.