Roudabush joins Sun Courier staff as reporter

Vanessa Roudabush, a Brooklyn native and recent graduate from the University of Iowa’s English and Creative Writing program, joined the Sun Courier staff as a news reporter this past July. –Photo by Robert Maharry

An aspiring writer with roots in the area is joining both the Sun Courier and Tama-Toledo News Chronicle staff as a reporter.

Vanessa L. Roudabush is a native of Brooklyn who graduated from BGM High School in 2009, and after trying out other careers, she decided to go back to school — first Iowa Valley’s Grinnell campus in 2016 and then the University of Iowa in 2019 — and worked toward a degree in English and Creative Writing, graduating earlier this year.

“The reason why I love writing is it’s, in my opinion, the most intimate way to reach a person, to communicate with them, to get ideas across, because (in) general conversations, people tend to get defensive,” she said. “I found that through my writing, people are more understanding and actually listen to what I have to say. I have a passion for words.”

Roudabush, who still resides in her hometown, said she was attracted to Tama County because of its unusual diversity for its size, and she’s also interested in the history of the communities and even the flora and fauna within the county. She looks forward to meeting important people within the communities and the Meskwaki Settlement and covering events and meetings here.

The newest staff member got her first taste of the job during an event with U.S. Rep. Ashley Hinson at a local farm between Tama-Toledo and Traer on Friday, July 22, and she plans to hit the ground running with several meetings already on the docket for this week. Although her first love is fiction — speculative worlds specifically — she believes journalistic writing will offer her a chance to hone her craft while also learning more about the communities and the county she will be serving.

“I’m really excited to make community connections specifically with individuals. I love talking to organizations that are trying to make change, people that are concerned about things that want to have their voices heard,” she said. “I know that I myself have times where people don’t hear me, and I want to be that person that can be a conduit for what people want to say to the community.”

Roudabush joins veteran reporter Ruby F. Bodeker at the Sun Courier.

To reach Roudabush, email vroudabush@tamatoledonews.com or call her at the TTNC office (641) 484-2841 or on her cell at (319) 343-6816.