Young Alumni 2008

Joe Altman ’99

It still amazes me how my freshman-year venture into the Daily Wildcat’s messy basement newsroom changed my life. In a matter of months I went from a pre-med biology major looking for an extracurricular activity to an impassioned journalist embarking on a life-changing experience.

My time at the Wildcat not only introduced me to lifelong friends but gave me an amazing first-hand education that still influences my career to this day. It was amazing to learn so much from my first editors, who seemed like seasoned pros from Day One. Then I got the privilege to hire, teach and pass the torch to a wonderful crop of young journalists.

I won’t forget the big stories we covered, like the basketball team’s national championship, fraternity-party shootings, sit-ins in the president’s office and the CatCard controversy, but my fondest memories of the Wildcat are the little things like the staff camping trips and talent shows, watching TV on the green couch, and sitting at my desk with my breakfast from the Fiddlee Fig to read Mark Woodhams’ notes about the latest edition. I may not have agreed with everything Mark said, but for as long as I live, I’ll think of him every time I consider using a semicolon. (I’ll also think of him every time I drink tequila, but that’s another story.)

When I joined the staff nearly 15 years ago, the Wildcat was launching its first Web site and just getting started with digital photography. Today, Arizona Student Media is broadcasting news via video and podcasts, and I’m glad to see the Wildcat’s innovation is still strong at a time when that’s so vital to the news industry. I’m proud to be part of a legacy that will contribute to the fabric of the campus and remain an essential part of educating budding journalists for many years to come.

Joe Altman became the automotive editor at The Associated Press in July 2008. He oversees four reporters in New York and Detroit who cover the auto industry full-time for the world’s largest news organization, and he coordinates other automotive coverage from AP bureaus around the world.

Joe began his AP career in 1999 as a reporter and night supervisor in the Detroit bureau, where he covered courts, government, sports and the auto industry for three years before returning to Phoenix, his hometown. He worked briefly for the Transportation Security Administration and Discover Financial Services before joining Westwood One’s Metro Networks radio news service in 2004 as a national writer, where he covered the 2004 presidential election and the deaths of President Reagan and Pope John Paul II. Joe returned to the AP in Detroit in 2005, leading coverage of Delphi Corp.’s bankruptcy and the death of civil rights pioneer Rosa Parks. He joined AP’s Business News Department in New York in 2006 as the night supervisor.

Joe also has worked for the Arizona Daily Star and in Newsday’s Washington bureau. He is a native of Wayne, Mich., and has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and political science from the University of Arizona, where he was news editor, managing editor and online editor of the Daily Wildcat and editor in chief of the Summer Wildcat.

Alicia Caldwell ’98

The Associated Press May 2005-Present
El Paso, Texas
Correspondent–Coverage of immigration and the U.S./Mexico border, the U.S. military at Fort Bliss and other general and breaking news in West Texas

Orlando Sentinel Jan. 2002-May 2005
Orlando, Florida
Staff Writer–Coverage of criminal justice and pubic safety in Central Florida

The Philadelphia Inquirer May 2000-January 2002
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Suburban Staff Writer–Coverage of criminal justice and municipal government in suburban-Philadelphia

Arizona State University August 1998-May 2000
Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication
Master of Mass Communication-Print Journalism
University of Arizona August 1995-May 1998
Bachelor of Arts-Communication
La Universidad de Alcala de Henares (Spain) Spring 1998
El Estudio Internacional Sampere (Spain) Summer 1997


Professional Affiliations
Criminal Justice Journalists–Board of Directors August 2004-Present

2006 Houston Press Club Lone Star Awards, Print Journalist of the Year–Second Place

2005 Al Nakkula Award for Police Reporting–Honorable Mention
Deltona Massacre, Orlando Sentinel

2002 PAPME, Public Service–First Prize
OxyContin Invasion, The Philadelphia Inquirer (presented to reporting team)

2002 Philadelphia Press Association, Public Service–Honorable Mention
OxyContin Invasion, The Philadelphia Inquirer (presented to reporting team)

Susan Carroll ’99

My first job at the Wildcat had a longish title, “night production assistant,” which basically involved running the newspaper through a glue machine and dropping it off with the printer. It wasn’t glamorous, but it led to my first reporting job in the late 1990s. I remember sitting at a desk in the old newsroom in the basement of the student union, surrounded by some very smart people, agonizing over my first lede, and eventually my first investigation. I really fell in love with being a reporter while I was at the Wildcat. It was easily the best learning experience of my college years. I’m honored to have been a part of it.

Susan Carroll is an immigration reporter for the Houston Chronicle. She joined the Chronicle in October 2006 after four years covering the U.S.- Mexico border for the Arizona Republic. She was twice named Arizona’s Journalist of the Year by the Arizona Press Club and has won top awards in beat reporting from Arizona’s Associated Press Managing Editors. Susan served as a panelist at the national conventions of Investigative Reporters & Editors in 2006 and 2007. She started covering immigration in 2000 for the Tucson Citizen after graduating from the University of Arizona in 1999 with degrees in Journalism and Spanish.

Jennifer Cieslak (Levario) ’02

My fondest memories of working at the Wildcat include crazy hours and gross furniture, great people, great parties and great journalism.

Jen Levario Cieslak got her start in journalism as design chief, assistant arts editor and managing editor at the Daily Wildcat. She now designs A1, enterprise projects and special sections at The Arizona Republic, which brought her to Phoenix in 2003.

A Tucson native, Jen joined the Arizona Daily Star in 2000 as a designer for the news and features desks. In 2001, Jen won the Society for News Design’s Award of Excellence for her front-page design of the initial U.S. bombing in Afghanistan. She also has been honored several times by the Arizona Press Club and the Arizona Associated Press Managing Editors, including three consecutive first place awards for outstanding A1 design. Most recently, the Press Club named Jen a finalist for statewide Designer of the Year.

Jen earned her B.A. in journalism from the University of Arizona and her M.Ed. from Arizona State University, but promises she only cheers for the U of A. She is married to Dave Cieslak, a former Wildcat editor in chief.

Kristen Davis ’00

My top Daily Wildcat memory is all of the collective time spent in the newsroom. Class get out 25 minutes early? We stopped by the Wildcat in the basement of the Student Union to see what was going on. Three hour break between classes? We didn’t go home or go to the library. We headed to the Wildcat to work on stories, socialize and study (on the green couch, of course).

Most of my friends in college were fellow Wildcat staffers. To name a few: Jen Fitzenberger, Joe Altman, Craig Degel, Kevin Clerici, Alicia Caldwell, Chris Jackson, Scottie Bricker, Jason Vrtis, and more. Many days groups of Wildcat staffers would start our day together after the first class of the morning, meet later for lunch at the Wildcat, work there in the afternoon and evening, and go to Wildcat parties during the weekend.

Kristen Davis graduated from the University of Arizona in 2000. She was a member of the Daily Wildcat’s sports staff from 1996 until 1999, when she was hired full-time as a sports reporter at the Arizona Daily Star.

Kristen covered University of Arizona teams and women’s sports at the Star until 2003, when she was promoted to High School Sports Editor. She was named one of the Arizona Daily Star’s top two employees for 2003.

In 2004, Kristen joined the Cleveland Plain Dealer staff as the newspaper’s Metropolitan Sports Editor, directing the coverage of 180 area high schools and recreational sports.

In 2005, The Plain Dealer won a national Associated Press Sports Editors Top 10 award for special sections for its high school and college football preview.

Kristen is a 1997 graduate of the Sports Journalism Institute, a summer training program to enhance racial and gender diversity in sports departments of newspapers nationwide, and had summer sports reporting internships at the Los Angeles Daily News and Minneapolis Star Tribune.

Mary Fan ’00

The Wildcat was not just the pivotal college experience for me–it was nearly my entire college experience. This is not just because I missed countless classes for Wildcat work. The Wildcat newsroom and the people who made the Wildcat tick gave me one of the best educational experiences of my life.

Every story was a chance to learn something new–and then write about it on a daily deadline. I still remember–and benefit from–the education on writing from Mark Woodhams, the wise soul of the paper, and my super-talented first editors, Zach Thomas, Joe Altman and Tom Collins, who taught me what a “lede” was and the crisp beat of news-writing. I loved everything about the Wildcat, from the smell of papers fresh off the presses, to the dingy gray-yellow newsroom in the basement, to the impossibly cool and wise writers, editors, photographers and designers.

I left science for the paper, I cut classes for the paper, I changed my majors for the paper. All with the heady delight of addiction to the culture and life of the news. Because of the Wildcat, I write and talk to people today for a living instead of peering through a microscope or listening through a stethoscope. Because of the Wildcat, I have a fierce and passionate love for the culture of the news and news-gatherers that I still cannot shake. The Wildcat was a great award-winning paper and formative educational experience back in the day and I am proud to see it continues to be a superb paper and formative institution today.

Mary Fan started this fall as an assistant professor of law at American University in Washington, D.C. Her research and teaching interests include criminal law and procedure (U.S. and international), evidence, immigration and border law, federal courts and jurisdiction, and property. Before joining the faculty, she was an Assistant U.S. Attorney in the Southern District of California. Mary also worked as an Associate Legal Officer to Judge O-Gon Kwon at the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia on the trial of military and police officers alleged to be responsible for genocide and other serious violations of international humanitarian law related to the Srebrenica mass killings and forcible displacement. She is a member of the Editorial Committee for the Journal of International Criminal Justice (Oxford University Press).

Mary earned her law degree from Yale University, where she was a Notes Editor for the Yale Law Journal, a Managing Editor for the Yale Journal of International Law, a Coker Teaching Fellow for Professor Stephen L. Carter, and a recipient of the Jewell Prize and Nathan Burkan Prize for two of her publications. Mary clerked for Judge John T. Noonan, Jr. of the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. She also holds a master’s degree in social anthropological analysis from Cambridge University.

While earning her bachelor’s degree at the UA, Mary was a reporter and opinions editor on the Daily Wildcat. She is married to Dean Kawamoto, an attorney in the Washington, D.C. office of the New York law firm Boies, Schiller & Flexner.

Brett Farmiloe ’06

The Wildcat never made me a rich college kid (the only raise I ever received was for 18 cents, boosting my hourly wage to less than the current minimum wage), but the experience was priceless. I got to watch girls and nurture paper cuts, but more importantly, I got to be a part of a community that opened the door for my career

Brett Farmiloe hopped in an RV and traveled the country with three friends after graduation to interview 300 people who love their job. Brett’s “Pursue the Passion” tour has turned into a flagship program of the Jobing Foundation, a book and documentary, and a resourceful website for students addressing the “What should I do with my life?” dilemma. He currently oversees the development of Pursue the Passion for in Phoenix. While at the Daily Wildcat, Brett worked in our accounting department.

Check out Brett’s passion at

Joshua Hagler

Trained as an illustrator at the University of Arizona, where he drew comics and illustrations for the Daily Wildcat, Joshua Hagler established a career in the Bay Area writing and illustrating comic books, such as The Boy Who Made Silence which won him a Xeric Grant. He is also a gifted painter and recently received a grant from the Wildgift Movement. His work, both in comics and paintings, is based on exploring the inward mysteries and fears so often blanketed in outward certainty from both religious and secular movements. He has exhibited nationally and internationally at venues such as the Saatchi Gallery in London, the Headlands Center for the Arts in Marin, Calif., and the Ad Hoc Gallery in New York City. His current body of paintings will be shown in LA and the Bay Area in February.

2009 Solo Exhibitions 72 Virgins to Die For | Rico Garcia Fine Art, Costa Mesa, CA
(Bay Area tour to follow with paintings and art book featured at Reaves Gallery, San Francisco; Marboe Green Gallery, Oakland; with other spaces to be added.)

Group Exhibitions
Art-Interview International Competition Exhibition | To display during Berlin Biennial (invited to participate as second-prize winner in competition)
Title TBA (Five Painters) | Ad Hoc Gallery, New York, NY

2008 Solo Exhibitions
The Art of The Boy Who Made Silence | A.Muse Gallery, San Francisco, CA

Group Exhibitions
30 under 30 | juried show, Varnish Fine Art, San Francisco, CA, June
Pop Subversion | Ad Hoc Gallery, New York, NY, February
Behemoth |two-person show with Mike Ritch, Reaves Gallery, San Francisco, CA, January
Close Calls | Headlands Center for the Arts, Sausolito, CA, January
(invited to participate as finalist for Tournesol Award)

2007 Solo Exhibitions
Bring Us Rapture | Mina Dresden Gallery, San Francisco, CA

Group Exhibitions
Selections 2007 | juried biennial, 111 Minna Gallery, San Francisco, CA
The Little Show | Swarm Gallery, Oakland, CA
The Back Room | Varnish Fine Art, San Francisco, CA
Faithfully | Bucheon Gallery, San Francisco, CA
2006 Your Gallery | ten international artists selected by a panel of critics, artists, gallerists and Guardian readers in association with The Saatchi Gallery displayed at The Guardian Gallery, London.
RaiseUp | traveling show of international artists featured in the RaiseUp art book: C. Emerson Fine Arts, St. Petersburg, FL
ADM Project Gallery, Hollywood, CA
Omy Gallery, Toronto, Canada
Bay 2 LA | group show, Project Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
Open Studios Preview Exhibition | juried show, The Canvas Gallery, San Francisco, CA.
Fourteen Hills | group show, Varnish Fine Art, San Francisco, CA
2005 Word of Mouth | group show, Rhys Gallery, Boston, MA
ArtSFest | juried show, San Francisco Center for Design Galleria, San Francisco, CA
Portraits | group show, Gallery Tirage, San Francisco, CA
2004 Kitchen Sink Magazine anniversary | group show, Lobot Gallery, Oakland, CA
Culprit Research Project | group show, 111 Minna Gallery, San Francisco, CA
Contemporary Perspectives | juried show, Museum of Contemporary Art at the Luther Burbank Center for the Arts, Santa Rosa, CA
Kitchen Sink Magazine release | The Lab Gallery, San Francisco, CA
Lost Causes | three person exhibition featuring the work of Blaine Fontana, Matthew Bourque and Joshua Hagler, Urban Earth Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
2002 The Medium is the Massage | group show on permanent display, Triestman Center at the University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ
BFA Show | juried show, Joseph Gross Gallery at the University of Arizona Museum of Art, Tucson, AZ
Head First and Luminous | two-person exhibition featuring the work of Albert Hardin and Joshua Hagler, Carbonbase Gallery, Tucson, AZ

—Wildgift Movement Grant. Awarded $30,000 to create work for solo exhibition 72 Virgins to Die For, 2008
—University of Arizona Young Alumni Award, 2008
—Second place winner in international juried competition-, 2007
—Chosen work for Artspan Biennial Selections 2007, San Francisco, 2007
—Finalist, Headlands Center for the Arts Tournesol Award, 2007
—The Guardian (UK) in association with The Saatchi Gallery, selected as sole representative of the American West Coast from a group of 10,000 international emerging artists by a panel of art critics, artists, gallerists, and Guardian readers to have work featured with nine other artists in The Guardian Gallery, 2006
—Xeric Foundation Grant. Awarded $5,060 to produce illustrated book The Boy Who Made Silence. 2006
—San Francisco Center for Design Galleria, ArtSFest, nominated for San Francisco Bay Area Emerging Artist Award, 2005
—Joseph Gross Gallery, University of Arizona Museum of Fine Art, BFA Show, Judge•s Choice Award, 2002

Jeanne Cartwright | Danville, CA
Tracy Cole | Pleasanton, CA
Kristen Edwards | San Francisco, CA
Rico Garcia | Newport Beach, CA
Declan Hickey | San Francisco, CA
Michael Lownie | San Francisco, CA
Leo Madrid | Santa Fe, NM
Harry Markos, London
Jamie Mayer | Hollywood, CA
Dale McKay | Pawnee, OK
Robert Owen | San Francisco, CA
Mike Powell | Reston, VA
Jeff and Gina Puda | San Francisco, CA
Joey Scazzola | Sacramento, CA
Shannon Simon | Gilbert, AZ
Triestman Center at the University of Arizona | Tucson, AZ
Carl Wyckaert | Asse, Belgium
Doron Yacobi, London

2008 Plastic Antinomy Magazine, Issue 2. 5 Squared, interview
San Francisco Bay Guardian, “Behemoth,” review
2007 My Art Space,, interview
The AustralianArt Market Report, “Art online,” Issue 23
The Extra Finger,, interview
Castle Magazine, work selected, Issue 10
2006 The Guardian (UK), Special Report, selected to exhibit in contest, cited by critic Jonathan Jones as favorite artist in Saatchi Gallery’s Your Gallery contest
GenArt Pulse, “The Winners Are”
San Francisco Arts and Lit, “Exhibitions on the Horizon” featuring Joshua Hagler’s 5 Mined Fields Studio in the annual San Francisco Open Studios
RaiseUp Vol. 2, work selected
2005 Fourteen Hills Literary Journal, vol. 10, no. 3, work selected
Dirt: A Journal of Contemporary Arts and Literature, vol. 1, work selected
Brain Zone numero 3, Italy, portfolio selected
2004 EyeOn Magazine, portfolio selected
2003 Escaping Destiny, work featured in the documentary film funded by the National Film Board of Canada, 2003

2006 Speaker, University of Arizona School of Art, Tucson | Visiting Artist Series | A day of leading workshops and portfolio reviews, followed by an evening slide presentation

Jessica Lee ’04

I absolutely fell in love with journalism while working at the Arizona Daily Wildcat. I wore many hats throughout the nearly four years I was on staff, from opinions columnist, editor, science news reporter, and as the first ever Associate Editor and Reader Advocate. I saw first hand the power of the press, when I helped stop the destruction of the cactus garden in the heart of campus to exposing scam programs in student government. While editing the letters to the editor and listening to readers’ concerns, I understood the important role a newspaper can play in generating a vibrant community. When I graduated, it wouldn’t take me long to find my way back to newspapers. My experiences at the Wildcat could not have better prepared me for helping coordinate The Indypendent, one of the leading independent newspapers in New York City and longest-lived publication in the global Indymedia movement. Yet, this newspaper is vastly different. It operates on a consensus model, meaning that all participants have a say in the editorial and business direction of the newspaper. It is also largely volunteer-driven; all of our writers, illustrators, designers, ad salespeople and distributors give their time for free. Since it was founded in 2000, more than 600 volunteers have contributed to the newspaper. The Indypendent follows in the footsteps of scores of other important independent newspapers in the last 150 years, who published against all odds in the hope that a well-informed society will result in a better world.

Jessica Lee opted to trade saguaro cacti for skyscrapers when she moved to New York City from Tucson in January 2007 to join The Indypendent, the newspaper of the New York City Independent Media Center. She is one of the two full-time staff who coordinates the volunteer newspaper. The Indypendent is the most successful newspaper in the global Indymedia movement, publishing consistently for eight years. Since 2000, more than 600 citizen journalists, artists, graphic designers and media justice activists have contributed their time and energy to the newspaper. Winner of dozens of New York Independent Press Association awards, The Indypendent is dedicated to empowering people to create a true alternative to the corporate press by encouraging citizens to produce their own media.

While at the University of Arizona studying environmental science and policy, Jessica fell in love with newspapers after working at the Arizona Daily Wildcat for nearly four years as a columnist, editor, reader advocate, and science news reporter. She was awarded the 2004 Best News Story by the Arizona Newspapers Association and the 2002 College Columnist of the Year by the National Society of Newspaper Columnists. In her senior year, she was awarded the Wildcat Impact Award.

After graduating in 2004, she continued to pursue journalism on the side while working as an environmental consultant. She volunteered with the Arizona Independent Media Center collective from 2004 to 2006, covering environmental and border news and maintaining the open-publishing website (

The serious problems associated with the mainstream media–including media ownership conglomeration, corporate influence in editorial content, the for-profit news model, budget cuts in newsrooms and focus on entertainment news–have led her to believe in the importance of independently produced media. She also adheres to the philosophy that journalism should not be reserved for “professionals” only; rather, regular people can be empowered with the tools of journalism to be the media themselves, rather than relying on the mainstream media journalists who so often ignore important stories or flat out get it wrong.

She is a outdoorsy woman at heart, and can often be caught day dreaming of being back in the West, although the beaches at Coney Island and large urban parks have helped keep her content for now.

Saul Loeb ’04

One of my strongest memories of working at the Wildcat was our coverage of arguably the biggest news day in UA history–the riots for men’s basketball tickets and, a few hours later, shootings at the College of Nursing in October 2002. I was one of the first photographers at the college, with students and teachers still running out of the building. National news coverage turned toward Tucson. The Wildcat (led by the unshakeable Jeff Sklar) competed with the best of them, calmly and professionally covering the shootings from every angle, while still contending with the events at McKale. Less than five years later, I found myself photographing the aftermath of yet another school shooting, arriving on campus to cover the tragedy of Virginia Tech.

Saul Loeb is a staff photographer for Agence France-Presse in Washington, DC where he covers the White House as well as major national and international news. A 2004 UA political science and journalism graduate, Saul regularly flies aboard Air Force One as he covers President Bush on his travels throughout the country and abroad, with stops as varied as Paris and Tucson. Saul also traveled with First Lady Laura Bush on her unannounced trip to Afghanistan this past June. His photos have appeared on the front pages of numerous newspapers, including The New York Times, USA Today, International Herald Tribune, Sydney Morning Herald, Los Angeles Times, Toronto Globe & Mail, Boston Globe and the Chicago Tribune.

While at the Wildcat, Saul worked as editor in chief, managing editor, photo editor and photographer.

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