I'm delighted to announce a few changes here at the Tucson Weekly and our sister papers in the Tucson Local Media empire: First off, feature writer Jeff Gardner is being promoted to associate editor. If you're a regular reader, you know Jeff has written pretty much everything we've thrown at him: news, features, science, food and rock 'n' roll. Our Renaissance Man On Staff will still be doing all those things, but he'll also be helping out behind the scenes by coordinating our food and culture coverage, as well as overseeing our intern program. This week, Jeff tackles the local connection to the recently released National Climate Assessment, and brings us a report on our favorite plucky asteroid hunter, OSIRIS-REx, which arrived in the vicinity of Bennu on Monday, Dec. 3.
We also have a new staff writer: Kathleen B. Kunz is joining the team. Kathleen is currently finishing her degree at the UA School of Journalism, but she knocked us out during her internship last summer and we're confident she's gonna kill it on our staff. Kathleen was born in New Jersey but she followed Springsteen's advice to get out while you're young, so she grew up out here in Tucson. Kathleen tells us: "I want to reach out to people who haven't had their voices heard in the past and provide insight into our institutions."
Kathleen is coming on board a few weeks after we lost our former associate editor, Danyelle Khmara, to the morning daily. This week, we're running Khmara's swan song, an investigation into how the Tucson Police Department has been using a grant designed to battle sex trafficking. It turns out that the stereotypical sex-trafficking scenario—women who are forced into prostitution by vicious gangs—is hard to find in Tucson. Khmara also examines how some consensual sex workers ended up under investigation as part of the task force—and digs into how the federal government's efforts to shut down online classified ads for sex work has ended up making life more dangerous for those consensual sex workers. It's a complicated story that gets beyond the simple narratives we often hear about sex work. Read it here.
Elsewhere in the paper: Columnist Tom Danehy wonders what all these white women see in President Donald Trump; arts writer Margaret Regan rounds up the various Nutcrackers coming our way this holiday season; Chow writer Mark Whittaker celebrates the rebirth of the District Tavern; unpaid intern Savanah Modesitt looks at a successful effort to help find housing for some of downtown's homeless population; Cannabis 520 columnist Nick Meyers looks at how Congress might be ready to chill out when it comes to hemp and CBD; and there's plenty more in the paper to guide you through the holidays or just help you figure out where to rock this week.
— Jim Nintzel Executive Editor
Hear Nintz talk about what's happening in Tucson's entertainment scene Wednesday mornings at 9:30 a.m. during The Frank Show on KLPX, 96.1 FM.