Editions of The Cordova Times newspapers rest on a table in the paper's office on Main Street in Cordova on Monday, Nov. 19, 2018. Photo by Emily Mesner for The Cordova Times

Staff profiles, part I

As we head into the new year, we wanted to re-introduce ourselves to the community and share some holiday cheer. We write for you, and we want you to know who we are! For these next two issues we’re sharing brief profiles of our business and editorial staff members. Remember, you can always reach us at [email protected]

Camille Botello

What is your position? 

I’m the managing editor of The Cordova Times. 

How long have you been with The Cordova Times? 

I started at the paper as an editor in November 2022, and took over as the managing editor in February.   

What’s the most rewarding part of your role with The Cordova Times? 

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The most rewarding part of my role at The Cordova Times is working with our reporters to help refine pitches and angles for local news stories. There’s nothing like going from a phone call about a story idea to seeing a full-length, well-written story laid out on the page.   

What’s your favorite hobby to do in your free time? 

One of my favorite hobbies is my weekly yoga class. It’s always something different, and a great way to reset and unwind both physically and mentally!   

What’s your favorite holiday dish? 

Choosing between all my favorite holiday dishes is so tough, but I think my grandma’s Italian braciole with homemade spaghetti sauce and meatballs that she makes every Christmas Eve might take the top slot.   

Do you have any traditions around the start of the new year? 

I don’t have specific traditions around the new year, apart from eating Chinese food on New Year’s Eve. That’s because once my family and I were in Florence over the New Year and couldn’t find a table at any restaurant except one. Chinese food on New Year’s Eve in Italy? Unexpectedly perhaps my favorite restaurant we ate at during that trip. 

What’s your favorite way to eat seafood? 

You can’t go wrong with seafood unless you don’t eat it. I think smoked salmon or baked halibut in butter and garlic are some of my favorites, as well as a classic roll of sushi. 

Elin Johnson

What is your position? 

I started with the paper as the copy editor, and over the summer became the editor. I edit the paper as well as write stories. I’m particularly interested in covering education, statewide news, energy, and telecoms. 

How long have you been with The Cordova Times? 

I started with the paper as a copy editor in February 2023, so we are coming up on my one-year work-iversary! 

What’s the most rewarding part of your role with The Cordova Times? 

I definitely love meeting all sorts of new people and hearing their stories and learning about the cool things they are doing. Interviewing and getting to know sources is always fascinating. I also find it interesting to learn about community solutions to statewide, national and even global challenges. Of course, it’s rewarding to hear from our readers about how our coverage has touched or affected them. 

What’s your favorite hobby to do in your free time? 

I’m an Alaska baby so I love to downhill ski, hike, camp, and kayak. I’m also a big fan of my monthly book club, where we read whatever we want and then talk about things unrelated to books – it’s an incredible book club model, feel free to adopt it. This fall I made the classic decision to walk into The Net Loft and walk out an entirely different person. I am someone who does crafts now. I wasn’t before. Now, I crochet. One day you may see me with a table at the Saturday market. It’ll be a sad table given out of pity, but I’ll be there. So far, my dishcloth (a recommended project by the kind yet optimistic staff at The Net Loft) appears to be more of a fish-tail shape. I blame growing up on the coast, my natural instincts took over and my body wouldn’t let me make just a square. So, in my free time I guess I like to crochet. 

What’s your favorite holiday dish? 

All of them! We do king crab legs for New Year’s Eve, and that’s always special. I like a potato in any form, and of any variety. And you can’t go wrong with stuffing topped with cranberry sauce. However, please don’t give me anything prepared in a Jello mold. 

Do you have any traditions around the start of the new year? 

I like to reflect on the achievements and challenges of the past year, and my hopes for the coming year as I feel this prepares me to embrace the new year. Also, blowup fireworks. 

What’s your favorite way to eat seafood? 

Listen, I’m a simple woman. I’ll eat seafood in any form. If I had to pick…. I guess I’d take salmon over anything else. As a spread on a bagel in the morning, as a firecracker salmon rice bowl for lunch, grilled in a lemon butter sauce for dinner, and candied smoked salmon for dessert. 

Margaret (Margie) Bauman

What is your position? 

I am a freelance fisheries/environment reporter.  

How long have you been with The Cordova Times? 

Since February 2013. 

What’s the most rewarding part of your role with The Cordova Times? 

Trying to keep up with how climate change and other factors are impacting commercial fisheries. The science is fascinating. 

What’s your favorite hobby to do in your free time? 

Reading books about journalists, baking cookies and pumpkin bread, and walking my awesome dog, Roxy. 

What’s your favorite holiday dish? 

My mom’s lebkuchen recipe, with rum frosting. 

Do you have any traditions around the start of the new year? 

Tossing way too many extraneous story notes into a big bag and heading to recycling. 

What’s your favorite way to eat seafood? 

With good friends, and always only wild Alaska seafood. 

Kinsey Brown

What is your position? 

I am a local reporter. 

How long have you been with The Cordova Times? 

Since May 2023. 

What’s the most rewarding part of your role with The Cordova Times? 

Getting to learn about all the interesting events and efforts in Cordova, and meeting folks that I wouldn’t have the chance to interact with closely otherwise. 

What’s your favorite hobby to do in your free time? 

Finding new and interesting ways to cook with wild foods. 

What’s your favorite holiday dish? 

My Russian grandmother’s cabbage pockets. I make them with moose meat for an Alaskan version! 

Do you have any traditions around the start of the new year? 

We burn our Yule log in an outdoor fire. 

What’s your favorite way to eat seafood? 

Any way as long as it’s with friends and family. 

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