Staff Report

INDIANAPOLIS – The new year will bring a new executive editor to TheStatehouseFile.com, the award-winning news website powered by Franklin College journalism students.

Jan. 1, Colleen Steffen will succeed outgoing Executive Editor Janet Williams.

“Few periods of my life were more impactful than my time spent in newsrooms and at Franklin College. I’m so happy to be part of this program combining the best of both. For an FC grad, it’s a real dream to be back in the fold,” said Steffen.

Colleen Steffen becomes next editor of TheStatehouseFile.com

Collen Steffen, left, has been named the new executive editor of TheStatehouseFile.com, replacing Janet Williams, who is retiring effective Dec. 31.

Steffen, a Franklin College alumna, returns to her alma mater following a career as a newspaper editor, freelance writer and teacher.

She spent 13 years as a writer and editor at newspapers in three states and five years as a journalism instructor at Ball State University, where she specialized in immersive newsroom experiences for undergrads and wrote a textbook for beginning reporters. She has worked in PR and marketing and most recently owned her own content creation business offering everything from website creation to social media management. 

“We are thrilled to have someone with Colleen’s superb skill set take the reins at TheStatehouseFile.com. She is exactly the right person to lead our students into the next chapter – but, then again, she’s a Franklin College journalism grad, so she should be ready for big jobs and big challenges,” said John Krull, director of Franklin College’s Pulliam School of Journalism and publisher of TheStatehouseFile.com.

Steffen will oversee a staff of Franklin College journalism students who provide content for 35 partner news organizations year-round. TheStatehouseFile.com, which is entering its 10th year of operation, has produced graduates who work in journalism, politics, law and public service for organizations as large as CNN and as small as a rural Indiana newspaper.

“TheStatehouseFile.com has produced so many talented young journalists while covering those important stories that might get overlooked in the legislature's crowded schedule. I’m really looking forward to building on that legacy and expanding its audience and reach, particularly online.” said Steffen.

Steffen began working with Williams, the outgoing executive editor, Monday to ensure a smooth transition.

Williams leaves to pursue other interests, among them serving as the president of the Speed City Sisters in Crime, the Indiana chapter of the worldwide mystery/crime writers association Sisters in Crime.

“Janet has been a fantastic editor, teacher and mentor for our students. We all will miss her, but her legacy is immense. It will be seen in the work of every student who was fortunate enough to learn from her,” said Krull.

Williams said stepping away from serving as TheStatehouseFile.com’s executive editor was not an easy decision.

“Working with the talented students at TheStatehouseFile.com and watching them grow into accomplished journalists has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my professional career. I have learned much from them and am confident that in Colleen Steffen they will have a strong teacher and caring mentor. I appreciate the opportunity I have had to work with the students and with my colleagues on the faculty and staff,” said Williams.

TheStatehouseFile.com is a news website powered by Franklin College journalism students. Individual subscriptions are available for $5 per month or $50 per year. All revenue from the site supports the student journalists’ education.

TheStatehouseFile.com is a news website powered by Franklin College journalism students.

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