The Equity Lab logo

We’re a team of community-funded journalists at The Sacramento Bee
with a mission to deeply engage with disenfranchised communities
and elevate stories of community and collective importance.

About the lab

Almost 20 years ago, Sacramento was named the most diverse city in the U.S. by The Civil Rights Project at Harvard University. Time Magazine featured the report, which celebrated Village Park and noted more than half of William Land Elementary’s students spoke a language other than English at home.

But we weren’t talking about equity — or how far Sacramento had come and how far it had to go.

Today, the stories you are reading and the photos and videos you’re viewing reflect a community that’s evolving — and that is working for an inclusive future.

If history is our guide, we stand a good chance of making more of the kind of decisions that have long favored people and interests with outsized resources.

We know our community wants a different outcome.

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The Sacramento Region Community Foundation has established a fund for local journalism and education. The Impact Media Fund is continuing to take contributions for the Equity Lab. Click on the button below to donate.

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Sign up for the Equity Lab newsletter, where we work to understand, illuminate and disrupte the systems that prevent all residents full and equal access.

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MEET THE TEAM

Keiona Williamson is the Editor for the Equity Lab. Keiona can be reached at kwilliamson@sacbee.com or on Twitter @Kei_Williamson.

Alex Yoon-Hendricks is our equity reporter, covering a wide range of issues from COVID-19 and community impact to housing and social justice. Alex can be reached at ayoon-hendricks@sacbee.com and Twitter @ayoonhendricks.

Marcus Smith covers Sacramento County’s Black communities for The Sacramento Bee. Marcus can be reached at msmith@sacbee.com or on Twitter @sirmarcussmith.

Orizo Hajigurban is the Equity Lab's engagement reporter. Reach her at ohajigurban@sacbee.com.

What we'll do

The Sacramento Bee Equity Lab has two pillars.

Our accountability journalism is concerned with stories you can find only in the Central Valley. We are directly engaged with readers to elevate the stories that most affect our livelihoods, while holding people and institutions accountable for fair practices.

Our representative journalism is focused on specific community coverage of the everyday lives, cultures, achievements and concerns of communities underserved by mainstream media and news outlets.

Statement of Editorial Independence

Editorial independence has been a core value at The Sacramento Bee for more than 160 years. We strive to deliver high-impact journalism in the public interest. While we value the support and partnership of our funding partners, outside funders will not have any editorial oversight, approval or influence over the content produced by the fellow or other members of The Sacramento Bee newsroom.

FAQ

DO FOUNDATIONS AND DONORS HAVE ANY CONTROL OVER WHAT IS REPORTED?
Editorial independence has been a core value at The Sacramento Bee for more than 160 years. We strive to deliver high-impact journalism in the public interest. While we value the support of our funding partners, outside funders have no editorial oversight, approval or influence over the content produced by lab reporters or other members of the Sacramento Bee newsroom.

WHAT OTHER NEWS ORGANIZATIONS HAVE RECEIVED FOUNDATION FUNDING?
The Seattle Times launched an Education Lab years ago that is supported by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and City University of Seattle. The Miami Herald received support from the Rockefeller Foundation to cover Puerto Rico’s recovery from Maria. The Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and public media such as NPR and PBS have all accepted foundation funding.

WILL THIS EFFORT REPLACE THE SACRAMENTO BEE’S REGULAR REPORTING ON KEY ISSUES IN THE COMMUNITY?
No, these are new positions. We will continue to cover breaking news, education, housing, transportation and more across the Sacramento region.

Support The Equity Lab

The Sacramento Region Community Foundation has established a fund for local journalism and education. Donors to the Impact Media Fund at the foundation include James Irvine Foundation, The James B. McClatchy Foundation and the Sierra Health Foundation, as well as individual donors.

The Impact Media Fund is continuing to take contributions. Click here to help fund the Equity Lab.