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Posts Tagged ‘Derek Wallbank’

Wallbank Welcomes Baby Emma!

Congrats to MinnPost’s Washington correspondent Derek Wallbank and his wife, Eeda.  The happy couple welcomed their first child, Emma Rose Wallbank, into the world yesterday.  Wallbank’s little valentine was born at Washington Hospital Center and weighed in at 6 lbs. 10 oz.

In an emailed birth announcement, Wallbank said “I know there were some other news stories today, something about a budget I think, but I wanted to share my own little front page story.”

Welcome to the Fishbowl, little Emma!

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Fatherhood for MinnPost’s Wallbank

Exciting news for friend of FishbowlDC, Derek Wallbank!  The Washington correspondent for the MinnPost and his wife Eeda  are expecting a new baby in Februaury. Congrats!  We can’t wait to welcome your little guppy to the Fishbowl.

Brag Book Success! Wallbank to MinnPost

Another FishbowlDC “Brag Book” Success! Derek Wallbank, our very first Brag Booker has landed a new gig as MinnPost’s Washington correspondent. Wallbank will replace Cynthia Dizikes, who is leaving to take a metro reporting position at the Chicago Tribune.

Derek kicked off our series on September 25th after losing his job in the mass layoffs at CQ-Roll Call. CEO and Editor of Joel Kramer announced Derek’s new position and even plugged his “Brag Book” interview today. Click here to see the announce.

Congrats to Derek!

FishbowlDC Interview: Stylin’ & Profilin’ with DC‘s Karen Sommer Shalett

KSS.jpg Trading Spaces alum Mario De Armos called her “the most stylish journalist in Washington” and he just might be right. She’s the Editor-in-Chief of DC magazine. She’s stylin and we’re profilin’ Karen Sommer Shalett

What staple outfit should every reporter own? I once got great advice while interviewing an energy expert at Jim Baker‘s think tank in Houston. Her parents had founded the famed department store Louis Boston and she had been a journalist prior to becoming a wonk. She told me to always dress for the individual you are interviewing. Match their level of formality no matter how high or low to gain confidence and trust. I’ve covered fashion, alongside every other aspect of lifestyle reporting, for a decade this January. It is amazing the pschyographics you can learn by looking at how a source presents him or herself and you can be sure that source is trying to size you up in the same way. Though I would beg news anchors to begin dressing for this millennium. I don’t know that making the mainstream audience identify with you is as important as making them believe you are sophisticated and smart. We found that with our President. People decided they actually did want someone smarter than them making the decisions and explaining them. Although, I guess that doesn’t explain Glenn Beck.

What one product could you not live without? Not to get mawkish, but my husband Scott and I lost our house and everything in it during Hurricane Katrina. I was covering New Orleans for the Times-Picayune. It is a really trippy place to be – reporting on stuff and losing all of yours, and then covering an entire population who lost theirs, too. I learned immediately that other than my family, there is nothing I can’t live without. Now, what would I prefer to have not lost? Oh, those Chanel cap-toed heels with the Mylar silver ribbons laced up the legs. It’s been four years and clearly I still pine for them.

What has been your biggest career challenge? We moved back to my hometown DC after Katrina. I was pregnant and we already had a two year old. I landed at the Washington Post as a shopping columnist. DC magazine quickly called and scooped me up, five months pregnant. That was the second time in my career that I had been hired full-time while pregnant – which to me, says a lot about our industry. However, as I was giving birth (I mean literally, as I was pushing), my features editor quit and I wound up bringing my newborn to the desk with me 10 days after he was born. In truth, I restructured the magazine after that and I think we are who we are today because of the staff that was hired in the aftermath. However, it was only after the baby was nearly two that I felt our family had truly moved beyond the trauma of the Hurricane, the move and the changes in career.

What working journalist do you most admire? Robin Givhan. I mean, she won the Pulitzer for explaining why I left politics to cover fashion, design and culture. Of all the journalists covering the way we live, Robin brings a sharp-shooting target to every issue and hits it dead on each time. When I was living in Houston and attending Fashion Week, my mom (who lives in Silver Spring) would call me and read aloud what Robin wrote in the Post every day of the shows. I was geek enough to tell Robin about it. She was lovely enough not to call me a stalker.

Find out what store Karen would choose if she could only shop at one for the rest of her life, the proudest moment in her career and what’s happening at DC magazine and more after the jump.

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FishbowlDC’s Brag Book: Meet Derek Wallbank

bragbook_100x100.gif Good morning FishbowlDC! Meet our friend, Derek Wallbank. Wallbank was most recently a researcher at CQ Daybook and Maine beat writer for CQ Politics. Before CQ, Derek was a K-12 reporter and politics blogger for the Lansing State Journal in Michigan.

Even after a pretty rough day at work, our boy Derek took some time to catch up with FishbowlDC. He responded to his interview before I even opened my computer this morning. Talk about calm during crisis and knowing how to rock a deadline…


What working journalist do you most admire and why? The journalist I still try and live up to is a guy named Thomas P. Morgan who used to work for a small alternative weekly in Lansing Mich. He covered city hall and used to smoke everyone on that beat. Not just win, but leave people in his wake. Now, Tom’s a smart guy, but I put his success down to the simple fact that he flat out outworked everyone else. He didn’t take kindly to spin and didn’t let someone’s B.S. get in the way of cold, hard facts. I’ve always looked up to him for that.

Among active journalists in the D.C. area, I’m a big fan of Dana Priest, Jake Tapper and my friend and former colleague Jon Allen. Priest because she is an investigative reporter without peer, in my estimation. Tapper is probably the most tenacious questioner in the White House Press Corps this side of Helen Thomas. And Allen, to me, is the best reporter covering Congress full stop.

Proudest moment in your career? I find most of my biggest successes in journalism have happened because other folks decided they had better things to do with their time than chase a story any more.

For example, one night in April 2008, I decided to pop over to a giant block party in East Lansing called Cedar Fest that some folks had thought was going to turn ugly. Most TV crews and reporters buggered off after 1 a.m., assuming everything would be OK, but I decided to stay and watch because I got a sense the crowd was going to get unruly. That night turned out to be one of the worst riots in Michigan State University history, and I wound up filing the final version of my story at 7 a.m. while reeking from tear gas. My paper was the only professional media organization to provide a comprehensive play-by-play of what happened that night, mainly because most other reporters just gave up and went home to bed.

What is something that most people don’t know about you? My wife and I are big renaissance fair aficionados. She dresses up for it, though I have so far managed to not have to wear the dreaded kilt. Even in plain clothes, what better way could there be to spend a Saturday than drinking mead while watching a joust and cheering on your favorite horseman in a loud, moderately obnoxious faux-British accent?

What’s your guilty pleasure? Diet fruity-flavored soda, like diet Sunkist or Fresca. My dad always told me that the orange soda would turn my skin that color, which is just as well I suppose because despite growing up in Miami, Fla., I seem wholly incapable of tanning. Orange glow is the next best thing, right?

If you’re looking for a hardworking reporter with experience in newspaper, magazine, online and visual journalism – including video, consider Derek Wallbank. He specialize in campaigns and elections, politics, education, breaking news and soft features. More importantly, FishbowlDC guarantees that he won’t wear period garb to work…unless you’re into that.

You can check out one of Derek Nigel Wallbank’s recent articles here, catch up with him on LinkedIn, Facebook or by contacting FishbowlDC. We’d be more than happy to get you his contact details.

Read Derek’s responses to the rest of our questions after the jump.

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Introducing FishbowlDC’s Brag Book!


We know all too well that layoffs know no boundaries. Plenty of talented folks in the media have already and will lose their jobs in the future. But there is life after a layoff…and FishbowlDC wants to help you move on ASAP. That’s why we’re offering our job-seeking friends a place in the Fishbowl spotlight with “Brag Book.”

Brag Book is an abbreviated FishbowlDC interview where you can offer up some accomplishments and share a little info about yourself with the industry.

Interested in being featured in Brag Book? Drop a line to And check back tomorrow to meet Derek Wallbank in our premier post!

Several Stars Up for Grabs After CQ-Roll Call Cuts

Help Wanted? Now’s your chance! FishbowlDC has confirmed that SpyTalk’s Jeff Stein (one of my favorite reads), Chris Lehmann and award-winning reporter Jonathan Allen are all on the market after today’s layoffs at CQ-Roll Call.

Chris Lehmann @lehmannchris tweets:

I am now officially redundant, the Brits who canned me would say. Any jobleads, free drinks, career advice in the DC region warmly welcome

One thing being laid off has taught me: If anyone hugs me in this condition, I WILL cry. Fair notice.

From Jeff Stein:

“I have loved every minute of doing SpyTalk, which has gained a fervently loyal and growing readership, and I hope I can continue to do it somewhere else without missing a day. I have a lot of good stories in the pipeline.”

Our running list…

Jeff Stein
Jon Allen
Chris Lehmann
Derek Wallbank
Darren Harper
David Baumann
Avery Palmer
Amanda Munoz-Temple
Chuck Hoskinson
Thomas Hannett
Matt Speiler
Karoun Demirjian
Jodi Schneider
Vicki Needham
Stephen Langel
Jay Heflin
Adjoa Adofo
Karoun Demirjian
Bart Jansen
Greg McDonald
Adam Graham Silverman
Maureen Conners
Susan Shipp
Rachel Kapochunas
Matt Johnson
Paul Krawzak
Amanda Hirsch
Jessica Coomes
Dan Fowler

Drop us a line to let your future employers know you’re available.