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February 3, 2004

Women's eNews Biographies


Rita Henley Jensen
Editor in chief Rita Henley Jensenis editor in chief of Women's eNews. A former senior writer for the National Law Journal and columnist for The New York Times Syndicate, Jensen has more than 20 years of experience in journalism and journalism education, as well as an armload of awards, including the Hunter College Presidential Grant for Innovative Uses of Technology in Teaching, the Alicia Patterson fellowship, and the Lloyd P. Burns Public Service prize. Jensen is also a survivor of domestic violence and a former welfare mother who earned degrees from Ohio State University and Columbia Graduate School of Journalism.

Corinna Barnard
Corinna Barnard is Women's Enews' new senior editor, a writer whose journalism background spans coverage of finance, arms control, medicine, technology and parenting issues. In her most recent full-time position she worked for Dow Jones, Inc., where for many years she served as news editor for an international newswire covering emerging markets and later as a copy editor for The Wall Street Journal. Earlier in her career, Corinna was a radio commentator for "In The Public Interest," a national public-affairs radio program. She graduated from Yale University in 1980 with a degree in English literature.

Mona Eltahawy
Mona Eltahawy is managing editor of Arabic Women's eNews, our Arabic-language sister site. She was a correspondent for Reuters news agency for over five years, based in Cairo and Jerusalem. She has also reported for The Guardian newspaper and U.S. News & World Report from the Middle East. Her commentaries and Op-Eds have appeared in The Washington Post, The New York Times and International Herald Tribune.

Alexandra Poolos
Alexandra Poolos is Women's eNews' assistant managing editor. Poolos worked for over three years as a correspondent and editor for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty covering the Balkans, the former Soviet Union and the Middle East. She has also written for the Wall Street Journal, Newsday, The Christian Science Monitor and the Philadelphia Inquirer.

Ariel Jensen-Vargas
Ariel Jensen Vargas is Women's eNews' web operations manager. Jensen-Vargas worked for seven years as a computer graphic artist after graduating magna cum laude from Hunter College, specializing in Women's Studies, public policy, and computer programming. She is responsible for Web site maintenance, including uploading content, preparing art, and updating Web pages. She designs logos and printed pieces and organizes special projects, such as the 21 Leaders for the 21st Century. Jensen-Vargas is the mother of two children and an active breastfeeding advocate.

Sandra Spady
Sandra Spady Office Manager/Assistant Marketing Director, brings with her extensive experience in the for-profit world and five years experience in non-profit arena in management and development. Graduate of University of Virginia, she received a master's degree from Virginia Commonweath University.

Robyn Rossnagel
Robyn Rossnagel joined Women's eNews in November 1999 as assistant editor. Rossnagel received her masters in sport and recreation science from Temple University. A single mother, she enjoys traveling, cooking, reading, history and keeping fit--when time allows--with biking, walking and occasionally roller-blading. She now oversees member services.


Raymond Archer
Raymond Archer is an investigative journalist for the Ghanaian Chronicle, the largest independent daily newspaper in Ghana. He is a graduate of the Ghana Institute of Journalism and a fellow of Marquette University/Les Apsin Centre for Government in Wisconsin. In 2002 Archer won both the Global Medal and the African Prize of the 2002 Lorenzo Natali Prize for Excellence in Journalism sponsored by the European Union and the International Federation of Journalists. He is a board member of the West African Organization for Democracy and Governance.

Rekha Basu was born in India, raised internationally and schooled mostly in New York, Basu is an opinion columnist for The Des Moines Register, where she focuses mainly on human rights and women's rights issues. She has Masters degrees in journalism (Columbia University) and political economy (Goddard Cambridge Graduate School), and a B.A. in sociology from Brandeis University. Her byline has appeared in The New York Times, The Nation, USA Today and The International Herald Tribune, among others. She has won a variety of local and national journalism awards including a 2002 award from the South Asian Journalists Association for a piece on a Bangladeshi woman widowed by the Sept. 11 attacks, and the Vivian Castleberry Award for commentaries on women's lives.

Suzanne Batchelor has written for the national science series "Earth and Sky" and on health and medicine for Medscape Health, Web MD and the Texas Medical Association's "Healthline Texas." After completing a B.A. in English, she worked for several years in theatre and dance, including two Off-Broadway productions. A student feature-writing award from Women In Communications encouraged her to continue writing. Batchelor has also worked in Washington, Minneapolis, Houston and New York. She is currently based in Austin, Texas.

Kathryn Beaumont is a Los Angeles-based freelance journalist. She graduated from Princeton University and the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. She has worked as an assistant editor at University Business Magazine in New York City, as a reporter for the Idaho Mountain Express in Ketchum, ID, and as a freelancer for a wide variety of magazines, including People Magazine.

Siobhan Benet got the writing bug as a child. After receiving a bachelor's degree from the State University of New York at Albany and a master's in African-American studies from Yale University, she began freelance writing and never looked back. Benet has written for Women's eNews,,, Arts International, Smooth, The San Francisco Gael, The San Francisco Irish Times, People, WHO Weekly (People's Australian Edition), VIBE, Brooklyn Bridge and Panache Magazines. She is currently working on a novel based on her experiences growing up as a biracial hippie kid in the 1970s; an excerpt appears on Women's Writers: A Zine.

Barb Chavez is a reporter for the Albuquerque Journal and a freelance writer in New Mexico. A journalist with more than 15 years of experience, she has covered everything from sports and business to women's and family issues for the newspaper. During her career, she has won Associated Press Managing Editors awards for spot news and features writing.

Kristin Choo is a freelance journalist based in New York. She was the winner of a 1999 Front Page award for lifestyle reporting and a finalist for the 1999 Peter J. Lisagor award for trade feature writing.

Frederick Clarkson is an independent author, journalist and lecturer who lives in Western Massachusetts. His work has appeared in numerous newspapers and magazines including The Village Voice, the Houston Chronicle, Mother Jones, Ms., and He is the author of “Eternal Hostility: The Struggle Between Theocracy and Democracy” and the forthcoming “Profiles in Terrorism: Twenty Years of Antiabortion Violence,” both from Common Courage Press. The Leo J. Ryan Foundation presented him with its 2001 Media Award in "recognition of his rigorous research and writing to expose fundamentalist and cult intrusion into politics and society."

Cynthia L. Cooper is an independent journalist living in New York. With a background as a lawyer and a focus on justice and women's issues, her stories have appeared in Ms., the National Law Journal, Glamour, Poz, MAMM,, the New York Law Journal, Mother Earth News, ABA Journal, Perspectives, California Lawyer, investigative segments of television news, various newspapers, and elsewhere. She has also written five nonfiction books, and is a published and produced playwright.

Barbara Crossette, a contributing writer to The New York Times, was the paper's bureau chief in Southeast Asia and South Asia and a former diplomatic correspondent in Washington. In 1991, she won the George Polk Award for foreign correspondence for her reporting on the assassination of Rajiv Gandhi in India. She is the author of four books on Asia, including "So Close to Heaven: The Vanishing Buddhist Kingdoms of the Himalayas" and "The Great Hill Stations of Asia." She is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, the Asia Society, the Carnegie Council on Ethics and International Affairs and the Women's Foreign Policy Group.

Patrick Crowley has been a reporter and freelance writer since 1982. He has worked for the past 10 years as a political reporter and columnist for The Cincinnati Enquirer. His freelance work has appeared in Newsweek, MS Magazine, American Bar Association Journal, Family Circle, Casino Journal, Kentucky Monthly and Congress Daily and on a number of Web sites, including Women's eNews,,, and Commercial Real Estate Direct. He lives in Fort Thomas, Ky., with his wife and their two children, two dogs and five cats.

Shauna Curphey West Coast bureau chief for Women’s eNews, is based in Long Beach, Calif. She graduated magna cum laude with a Master's degree in communications from the University of Washington. She worked as an editor for Microsoft's Encarta Web site and for Her writing has appeared in the Orlando Weekly, Real Change News, Washington Law & Politics and the Tacoma's Business Examiner, among other publications.

Maya Dollarhide is a reporter and writer for the Asahi Shimbun newspaper in New York, where she covers human rights, women’s issues, and the United Nations. She has a Master’s degree in journalism from Columbia University, and her articles have appeared in publications including Ms., the New York Daily News, New York magazine and the Florida Sun-Sentinel.

Peggy F. DrexlerPeggy F. Drexler, Ph.D., is a research psychologist, writer and lecturer who is at work on a book tentatively entitled "Mothers Make Men." She has published her research in the Village Voice, the Los Angeles Times, Newsday, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the San Francisco Examiner, Bulletin of the Menninger Clinic, Gender and Psychoanalysis, In the Family and the Sherith Israel Journal on Gender. The Christian Science Monitor, Anchorage Daily News, and The Sacramento Bee have published her opinion pieces. She is often consulted as an expert on the changing American family, and the lives of boys, by publications such as The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, USA Today, the Seattle Times and Child magazine, as well as by television journalists.

Stephan Faris is a freelance reporter based in Istanbul, Turkey. He also contributes to Fortune Magazine, Arts International and

Ann Farmer is an independent journalist who lives in Brooklyn, New York. She has specialized in legal issues by covering the prison beat for Court TV and the reproductive rights beat for The Center for Reproductive Law & Policy. She also strings for The New York Times and contributes general news stories to such diverse publications as Emmy, The Village Voice, More, Dance Magazine,, Yahoo! Internet Life, Time Out NY, and others.

Mark Fazlollah has worked for the Philadelphia Inquirer since 1986. Previously, he was a correspondent in Latin America for United Press International and the Daily Telegraph of London. In 2000 he was part of a team of Inquirer reporters who won this year's Selden Ring Award, administered by the University of Southern California, for investigative reporting. His team received the Scripps Howard Foundation's Roy Howard Award in 1999 for public service reporting. In both year, the team's was as Pulitzer finalist. In 1996, Mr. Fazlollah won the National Association of Black Journalists' award for investigative reporting. In 1988, he was part of a team of reporters who won the George Polk Award for national coverage of the Iran-contra affair.

Jennifer Friedlin is a freelance reporter based in New York. She previously worked as a staff reporter for the Jerusalem Post and Reuters in Jerusalem. Last year Jennifer spent seven months living in Bosnia and reporting for newspapers and magazines including The Financial Times, The Guardian and The Jerusalem Report. She holds a bachelor's degree from Cornell University and a master's degree in journalism from New York University.

Victoria Groves
Victoria Groves is a former newspaper reporter and current freelance journalist living in the Boston area. She has a bachelor's degree in journalism and a master's degree in public policy and administration, both from the University of Massachusetts Amherst. She also has a publishing certificate from the Radcliffe Publishing Course at Harvard University. Aside from being a Womens eNews correspondent, Ms. Groves writes about women's issues, health policy, and teens. She is currently the writer and editor of two newsletters about teens and money, Dollar Diva and Raising Financially Fit Kids and has been published by Baltimore Magazine, Planned Parenthood's and Chesapeake Family Newsmagazine.

Suvendrini Kakuchi is a Sri Lankan journalist based in Tokyo. She was a 1997 Nieman Fellow and covers gender, human rights, environment and development issues. Kakuchi is married to a Japanese national and is the mother of two children.

Laura Koss-Feder is a business and features writer who has contributed to major publications such as Time, The New York Times, Money, Business Week, Investors Business Daily, Newsday and She holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from Northwestern University.

Nancy Cook Lauer, Capitol bureau chief for the Tallahassee Democrat, has 20 years experience in journalism and public relations and has won more than a dozen state, regional and national awards. In addition to numerous freelance clients, she has also worked for the Naples Daily News, the Bonita Banner and the Naples Star. She holds a B.S. summa cum laude in psychology from Old Dominion University, Norfolk, Va., and an M.S. in information studies from Florida State University, Tallahassee, Fla. Hobbies include gardening, travel, computers and learning Spanish.

Nicole Leistikow Nicole Leistikowis on the move again, this time to Delhi, India. She has enjoyed her year in Baltimore teaching public high school and looks to return to the city soon. Past highlights include: finishing a master's degree in twentieth-century English literature at Oxford, writing a thesis on the marketing of South African/Botswanan author Bessie Head, visiting South Africa, and developing a strangely un-American accent. Leistikow has also lived in New Haven, Connecticut, where she received a bachelor's degree in English from Yale University and got certified to teach secondary school. As usual, she looks forward to writing about her new city.

Jeff Lemberg is a freelance journalist living in Arlington, Mass. He is an adjunct professor of writing at a pair of Boston-area community colleges, and is a weekly contributor to The Boston Globe. A former reporter and editor for a variety of weekly newspapers in Connecticut and Massachusetts, Jeff served as managing editor of SchoolSports magazine from 1998 to 2001.

Asjylyn Loder is a freelance writer in New York. She has contributed to New Visions Magazine and The National Catholic Reporter and writes regularly on human rights issues. She holds a B.A. from the Johns Hopkins University Writing Seminars.

Chris Lombardi has been with Women's eNews from its beginning, covering the Beijing + 5 conference at the United Nations in June 2000, managing Fall 2000 election coverage and writing both editions of the 21 Leaders for The 21st Century series. Her work also appears in The Nation, Ms. Magazine, the Progressive, Inside MS, and New Mobility. She's been interviewed on CNN, MSNBC, the BBC, and the Christian Science Monitor. Lombardi's most recent book was a finalist for the Bellwether Prize for socially responsible literature, sponsored by Barbara Kingsolver.

Margarita Martinez
Margarita Martinez is a reporter working for The Associated Press in Bogota, Colombia. She is a graduate of the Columbia University School of Journalism.

Darryl McGrath graduated from the Columbia Journalism School in 1986 and has been a reporter for the Buffalo News, the Chicago Tribune and the Times Union in Albany, N.Y. She has written extensively on child welfare and was a 1997 fellow to the Casey Journalism Center for Children and Families at the University of Maryland. She is on the journalism faculty at the State University of New York in Albany. She is now a freelance writer whose work appears regularly in Women's eNews and the Boston Globe, and is a contributing writer for Metroland, Albany's alternative weekly.

Elizabeth Mehren
Elizabeth Mehren, New England bureau chief for the Los Angeles Times, is the author of three books. She is the recipient of many awards and has published in numerous national magazines. Mehren holds a degree from the Graduate School of Journalism at the University of California, Berkeley.

Ann Moline is a freelance writer in Alexandria, Va. She specializes in coverage of business-related issues, and has written extensively on both economic development and developmental economics for a range of editorial and corporate clients.

Fariba Nawa is a freelance journalist based in New York City. She has reported from the Middle East and South Asia, including on the recent war and reconstruction effort in Afghanistan, for the London Sunday Times, the San Francisco Chronicle, Mother Jones, The Village Voice, Agence France-Presse and Pacifica Radio. She is completing a Master's degree in Middle Eastern Studies at New York University.

Julie Ostrowski is a writer on gender issues, politics and culture. Her writing has been published in Newsday, the New York Daily News, the San Francisco Chronicle and the Buffalo News as well as online on She is also a contributing reviewer for The Women's Review of Books.

Journalist Laurence PatinLaurence Pantin is a journalist based in Mexico City. She studied journalism at New York University on a fellowship granted by the Fulbright Commission in Paris, and received her Master's degree in 2000. She received a scholarship from the Foreign Press Association in New York last year to report on labor and social issues in Mexico. Her work has appeared in Women's eNews, Mediachannel, In These Times, Le Petit Journal and CIMAC Noticias.

Bonnie Pfister is the U.S.-Mexico Border Bureau Chief for the San Antonio Express-News, based in Laredo, Texas. From 1989 to 1995 she lived in Brooklyn, N.Y., where she worked as a stringer for The New York Times' Metro desk, and as a freelance writer and researcher. She was a co-founder of the independent news quarterly Brooklyn Metro Times.

Journalist Barbara RaabBarbara Raab is a lawyer, writer, and television news producer in New York City. Her work has appeared on NBC and MSNBC; in The Advocate, Out, and USA Today magazines; and on-line in Salon and Planet Out. Raab has served as a board member of the National Lesbian and Gay Journalists Association and co-chair of the "In Our Own Write" cultural series at New York's Lesbian and Gay Community Services Center. A frequent panelist and public speaker, Raab has also taught and lectured at colleges including Ohio University, University of Colorado, and Ithaca College.

Elizabeth Randolph received her B.A. in English literature from Williams College and her masters in journalism at New York University. From January-August, 2001 she was Women's eNews' content manager. Prior to that, she was a freelance writer covering the Internet industry. She was also an analyst at Jupiter Communications, an Internet research firm based in New York, and editor of the monthly newsletter, Digital Kids. Randolph has written for Women's eNews, The Forward and AlleyCat News among other publications.

Cindy Richards has been a reporter for the Chicago Tribune, and a reporter, columnist and editorial writer for the Chicago Sun-Times. She has written about health care, children's issues, education and women's issues. She was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in 1991 for her coverage of workplace issues.

Caryl Rivers is an award-winning journalist, novelist and media critic, and is also a professor of journalism at Boston University. A former Washington correspondent, she has covered American life and politics for more than three decades. She is the author of 12 books, which have been selections of the Literary Guild, Book of the Month Club and Doubleday Book Club. She received the "Yankee Quill" award from the Society of Professional Journalists for distinguished achievement, and her articles have appeared in The New York Times, Rolling Stone, The Nation, Ms., Saturday Review, Mother Jones, Dissent, the Los Angeles Times, Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune and others. Rivers is also a member of the also a member of the Women’s eNews Board of Directors.

Tom Schram Tom Schram is a freelance journalist working out of Detroit. He spent 18 years as a writer and editor at the Detroit Free Press and is the former publisher of the Detroit Sunday Journal. He currently is co-chair of the
National Writers Union of Southeast Michigan.

Yvonne Scruggs-Leftwich Yvonne Scruggs-Leftwich Ph. D., is the executive director and chief operating officer of the national Black Leadership Forum Inc., headquartered in Washington. The forum is a 25-year-old confederation of civil rights and service organizations.

Suzie Siegel spent more than 18 years as a reporter and editor at the Arkansas Democrat in Little Rock, the New Orleans Times-Picayune and the Tampa Tribune. She headed the Tribune's diversity team before quitting to seek her master's degree in women's studies at the University of South Florida.

Peggy Simpson is a veteran reporter who covered the women's political movement in the 1970s and '80s. She recently returned to Washington after a decade in Central-Eastern Europe, covering the economic-political transition there after the fall of communism.

Allison Stevens joined The Hill, a Capitol Hill weekly, where she covers campaigns and elections after graduating with a Masters degree in reporting and writing from Northwestern University's School of Journalism. Prior to her graduate work, Stevens taught English in Japan and Ecuador for two years and traveled throughout Asia, South America and Europe. She attended the University of Michigan and graduated cum laude with a Bachelor's degree in English Literature and a concentration in Spanish.

Ann Telnaes caricatureAnn Telnaes is a freelance editorial cartoonist living in Washington, D.C. She is the 2001 recipient of the Pulitzer Prize for editorial cartooning, one of only four cartoonists in the history of the Pulitzers not affiliated with a newspaper. Ann's editorial cartoons have appeared in the Washington Post, Chicago Tribune, The New York Times, Los Angeles Times, the Detroit News and hundreds of other national newspapers. Her television appearances have included C-SPAN, The Editors (Canada), The Lehrer Newshour, and on BBC radio. The Library of Congress will exhibit a collection of her work in late 2003. View more of her work at

Juliette Terzieff is a freelance journalist currently based in Pakistan. After receiving a bachelor's degree in political science from Niagara University, she served as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Central Asian republic of Turkmenistan before beginning her journalism career. Specializing in crisis zones, Ms. Terzieff has covered events in Serbia, Kosovo, Bulgaria, Turkey, Pakistan, India and Afghanistan for clients including Newsweek, the San Francisco Chronicle, CNN International and the London Sunday Times.

Rebecca Vesely health policy reporter for The Oakland Tribune, writes frequently about women's issues, politics and business from San Francisco. She was a founding editor at Business 2.0 magazine, and is former Washington bureau chief for Wired News. From 1999 to 2001 she was editorial director at, a progressive Web site for young women with 1.2 million members. While there, she launched the first nationally syndicated radio program for teen girls. She has also served as editorial consultant to Choice USA, a pro-choice group founded by Gloria Steinem. She has a master's degree in journalism from Northwestern University, and her articles have been published in Mother Jones, Salon, Wired Magazine, Seattle Weekly and Details.

Melinda Voss was a staff writer for The Des Moines Register and its now defunct sister paper, The Des Moines Tribune, for nearly 26 years. During that time, she covered a wide range of topics, including medicine and health care, health care policy, family and social issues, education, technology, courts, and consumer affairs. Her 1990 series, "Gay Iowa: The Untold Story," was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. Voss completed her master's degree in public health from the University of Minnesota in December, 1999. In 1997, she co-founded the Association of Health Care Journalists, a group whose goal is improve news coverage of health and health care. In July of 1999, she became the group's executive director. Currently, Voss teaches journalism courses at the University of Minnesota and freelances.

Katrina WoznickiKatrina Woznicki is a freelance journalist based in Washington, D.C. She covers health, politics, women's issues, the environment, and dabbles in travel writing whenever possible. Currently, she is a stringer for United Press International and People magazine. Her work has appeared in Newsweek, The New Physician, The Associated Press, The Boston Globe, The Portland Oregonian and Self.

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