Staff Bios

Executive Editor:

Kayla Shults is a senior studying journalism and international studies. She has been writing for the Independent since the beginning of her sophomore year. She began on the writing track, but has since switched over to broadcast because of her work with the WUSB News at Noon show, as well as the School of Journalism’s live broadcasts. After graduation, Kayla hopes to cover either music, sports, or international affairs. When not in the newsroom, she can be found at concerts, spending too much time trying to take pictures of her dog, or obsessing over all things Cuba related after a trip to the island nation this past January, (don’t bring it up unless you have an hour to hear her ramble about it).

Contact at [email protected]

Managing Editor: 

Abigail Wolfenberger is a Tennessee native who doesn’t say “ya’ll” and hates the taste of Mountain Dew, but she does have a green tractor! This is her fourth year at Stony Brook — she says fourth year instead of senior year because her family may be attending her funeral before her graduation. She switched into journalism last year and will be calling herself a Super-Senior for the foreseeable future…but at least these are the best years of her life, right? 

Contact at [email protected]

News Editor: 

Rylie Bernard

Contact at [email protected]

Blogs Editor: 

Kevin Rutigliano is a junior studying political science with a journalism minor. He is also learning how to speak and write Korean on his own time. He loves to read about 20th century history and about different cultures around the world. He loves to run and play basketball at the Campus Recreation Center. He is also a huge fan of the NBA and is a die-hard Boston Celtics fan. When he is not doing all these things, he enjoys relaxing and watching retro TV shows and movies. He also enjoys hip-hop and classic rock. After graduation, he is considering teaching English in Korea for a short time before getting a job as a broadcast journalist or producer. Kevin plans to attend graduate school to study foreign policy and international affairs in the future.

Contact at [email protected]

Reviews Editor:

Giovanni Ortiz has several things she thinks about more than once a day: her cuddly pitbull, Sam, her bipolar poodle, Daisy, her two sisters, her parents, whether or not someone is staring at her because she has something on her face and whether or not someone just saw her trip. She loves asking personal questions, but hates answering them. She love music, art, writing and grammar, and she has a somewhat interesting story behind her name. If you ever see her, don’t be afraid to ask.

Contact at [email protected]

Listicles Editor: 

Carly Gassmann

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Copy Editors: 

Jennifer Cooper 

Contact at [email protected]

Dara Bahk 

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Social Media Manager:

Siobhan Becker is a junior journalism major following the online multimedia track. Most of her time is dedicated to social media and the blogosphere. The rest of her schedule is devoted to her dogs, Teddy and Bear.

Contact at [email protected]


Staff Writers:

Kaylyn Ahrenstein

Julio Avila

Rylie Bernard

Elizabeth Brenner

Rebecca Brooks

Janelle Clausen

Hager Eldaas

Kayla Frazier

Jesse Friedlander

Carly Gassman

Joe Goncalves

Stephen Infantolino

Rawson Jahan

Nick Kalantzopoulos

Kenneth Kim

Wenhao Ma

Autumn McLeod

Lawrence Nzuve

Giovanni Ortiz

Nicola Shannon

David Sheridan


TC McCarthy