To the editor,
Two weeks ago, Elon News Network Executive Director Jack Haley called me regarding a situation from March 2019, which I understand has come under new scrutiny considering campus climate of ENN’s crime reporting. I initially did not recall the situation being described, but over the course of the last two weeks, it became clear that I had a lapse of judgement and deleted a story instead of updating the text and headline. It is a mistake that I take responsibility for. When Haley and other ENN leadership told me they would be publishing a statement addressing what had occurred, I fully supported them wanting to be transparent.
However, it hurt me Monday morning to read the statement and have my actions categorized as deception. Elon News Network was the pinnacle of my college experience, and it provided me the training ground to produce high quality work that set me up to succeed as a professional. The mistakes we make as students offer teachable moments about the ethical and practical situations journalists will experience in the field.
It was never my intent to deceive anyone when I talked to ENN’s current leadership about this, and I apologize if I came across that way. ENN’s advisors and the faculty and staff in the School of Communications have always supported me, and they will always have my respect. They taught me the values of honesty, integrity and credibility, and that is something I have — and still — take very seriously.
I never intended for any of my actions as Executive Director to cause issues for the current students of ENN. I worked hard and vigorously to be a leader the Elon community could trust, and I did my best to improve ENN, both externally and internally, for those that would come after me. It’s unfortunate that this situation may have negated some of that progress.