Luanne Rife, executive director and chief development officer

Luanne Rife

Luanne has worked in local news for nearly four decades as a reporter, editor, editorial page editor, and commentary editor at newspapers in Virginia, Pennsylvania, Alabama and Tennessee.

She took an early retirement from The Roanoke Times in April 2021, after 16 years there, when she learned continued staff cutbacks meant little ability to do in-depth reporting. Luanne received national fellowships from the Association of Health Care Journalists, The Gerontological Society of America and the University of Southern California’s Center for Health Journalism to support substantial reporting projects.

She has won dozens of journalism awards, including national honors, but is most proud of two from non-journalism organizations. She was named mental health journalist of the year by the Roanoke region’s National Alliance on Mental Health, and is the only journalist honored with the Charles Crowder Jr. Award by the Virginia Rural Health Association.

She cofounded Cardinal News in order to create a sustainable news organization to tell the important stories of Southwest and Southside Virginia. Contact: luanne@cardinalnews.org or 540-467-2189.

Dwayne Yancey, executive editor

Dwayne Yancey

Dwayne has more than four decades of experience in Virginia journalism, including 39 years with The Roanoke Times as a reporter, editor and, for seven years, editorial page editor. During that time he twice won the Virginia Press Association’s D. Latham Mims Award for Editorial Leadership, and was inducted into the Virginia Communications Hall of Fame. He is the author of “When Hell Froze Over,” a book about Virginia politics, as well as an internationally-produced playwright. He lives in Fincastle. Contact: dwayne@cardinalnews.org or 540-529-1136.

Megan Schnabel, managing editor

Megan Schnabel

Megan has been a journalist in Southwest Virginia for more than 25 years. She started out writing about economic development, technology and retail business for The Roanoke Times, then became an editor at the newspaper, overseeing coverage of topics including business, local government and criminal justice. She also spent two years as editor of The Blue Ridge Business Journal. She holds a degree in journalism from Northwestern University and lives in Roanoke. Contact: megan@cardinalnews.org or 540-819-4969.

Matt Busse, business reporter

Matt Busse

Matt spent nearly 19 years at The News & Advance in Lynchburg, most recently as its managing editor. He began as a reporter covering business, local government and courts, and later served as the digital editor for multiple Virginia newsrooms. A Richmond native, he graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a degree in mass communications. He lives in Lynchburg. You can reach him at matt@cardinalnews.org or 434-849-1197.

Susan Cameron, Southwest reporter

Susan Cameron.

Susan is an award-winning journalist who has covered Southwest Virginia and Northeast Tennessee for nearly 40 years. An Alabama native, she graduated from Virginia Intermont College with a degree in communications/psychology and spent 38 years at the Bristol Herald Courier, first as a reporter who covered crime, both Bristol city governments, politics, education, health care and the environment.  She then spent 25 years as city editor, handling the coverage of local news. Contact: susan@cardinalnews.org or 276-791-5928.

Tad Dickens, technology reporter

Tad Dickens.
Tad Dickens

Tad is an east Tennessee native who grew up drumming and writing, and he considers himself fortunate to still do both. He came to Roanoke in 1999 to work for The Roanoke Times, and his multiple beat assignments included about 16 years covering the Southwest Virginia music scene. Tad was the paper’s features editor from September 2021 to August 2023. The East Tennessee State University graduate has won awards for courthouse coverage, critical writing and column writing. For fun, he walks his dog, Buster, reads too much news and plays drums with two Roanoke-area bands. Reach out via 540-293-6018 or tad@cardinalnews.org

Grace Mamon, Danville reporter

Grace Mamon

Grace is a Virginia native who grew up in Fredericksburg and studied journalism and English at Washington & Lee University. During her time there, she served as editor-in-chief of the university newspaper and completed internships with The Roanoke Times and the Tampa Bay Business Journal. She’s also been freelancing for Cardinal. In Danville, Grace will be devoting particular attention to the economic rebirth of that city and the surrounding counties. Contact: grace@cardinalnews.org or 540-369-5464.

Erica Myatt, copy editor

Erica Myatt
Erica Myatt

Erica has worked in editing roles in the Roanoke Valley for almost 25 years, with most of that time spent at The Roanoke Times. In her time on the night copy desk, she served over the years as a night editor, overseeing nightly editing and headline-writing for news sections. As community editor at the newspaper, she led a team of journalists who launched and grew three weekly publications and accompanying websites. Erica currently serves by day as a public relations specialist at Virginia Western Community College. She holds a bachelor’s in history, master’s in English writing and certificate in professional leadership from Hollins University. Contact: erica@cardinalnews.org.

Sherry Quinley, sponsorship sales manager

Sherry has worked in local media for several decades as a reporter, television director, and an account executive. Her video production company documented events and provided legal services in the region for 10 years. More recently, she was director of sales and marketing for Johannus US. In 2018, Sherry co-founded Regional Obituaries Inc., designed to serve families by providing a low-cost obituaries for friends and loved ones. Sherry has won many awards for her marketing abilities and is ready to help you be successful in reaching folks in the community. Contact sponsorships@cardinalnews.org or 540-397-1724

Lisa Rowan, education reporter

Lisa Rowan.
Lisa Rowan.

Lisa was most recently an editor and senior reporter covering consumer finance and the economy at Forbes Advisor, a subsidiary of Forbes Media. Lisa has written about personal finance and small business for a variety of publications over the last 10 years, and her first book, “Money Hacks,” was released in 2020. She got her start in journalism in the suburbs of Philadelphia, and has worked for outlets in Washington, D.C., and St. Petersburg, Florida. Contact: lisa@cardinalnews.org or 540-384-1313.

Markus Schmidt, political reporter

Markus Schmidt
Markus Schmidt

Markus is an award-winning journalist who brings more than 20 years of experience, including two years as an investigative reporter for BILD, the largest national daily publication in his native Germany, and more than four years with the Richmond Times-Dispatch, where he mostly covered Virginia politics. Markus comes to Cardinal  from Virginia Living, the most read lifestyle magazine in the commonwealth, where he has served as associate editor. He also spent several years in the music business, and he has a knack for Virginia bourbon and vintage jazz records. He lives in Richmond. Contact: markus@cardinalnews.org or 804-822-1594.

Dean-Paul Stephens, Martinsville-Henry County reporter

Dean-Paul Stephens.
Dean-Paul Stephens.

Dean is a Jamaica-born reporter who grew up in North Carolina, where he covered communities throughout the state. Most recently he covered race and regional politics for the USA Today network. In Martinsville, he will spotlight an often-overlooked region of the state. Contact: dean@cardinalnews.org or 276-618-6609.

Brooke Stephenson, audience engagement editor

Brooke Stephenson.

Brooke has worked in journalism and digital communications since 2018. She studied public policy and writing at William & Mary, and completed internships and fellowships at Trail Runner Magazine, the Pulitzer Center on Crisis Reporting, and most recently, ProPublica. She has also reported for the Carolina Public Press, and consulted for several clients on digital marketing and promotion. At Cardinal News, Brooke finds creative ways to connect readers with our reporting. Contact: brooke@cardinalnews.org or 540-589-3465.

Who is “Cardinal Staff”?

You will see some bylines that say merely “Cardinal Staff.” That byline appears on items that are generally a compilation of news briefs from other sources where we haven’t done enough original reporting to justify a byline — such as routine announcements.


Cardinal News is operated by Cardinal Productions, which incorporated in July 2021 and is in the process of obtaining 501c3 status. Cardinal’s board:

Caroline Glickman, board president

Caroline Glickman

Caroline, a long-time resident of Lynchburg, is a former editor at The (Lynchburg) News & Advance and The Roanoke Times. 

Debbie Meade, secretary

Debbie is a former publisher of The Roanoke Times.

Chris Turnbull, treasurer

Chris Turnbull

Chris is a longtime strategic communicator in the region and currently senior director of corporate communications for Carilion Clinic. 

We will be expanding this board to include representatives from throughout Southwest and Southside Virginia. Cardinal News also has two advisory committees.

Our community advisory committee:

Dayo Abah, head of the journalism department at Washington and Lee University, Lexington

Earving Blythe, retired  vice president for information technology and chief information officer at Virginia Tech

Rick Boucher, former member of Congress, Abingdon

Erin Burcham of the Roanoke-Blacksburg Technology Council, Roanoke

Bev Fitzpatrick Jr., retired Transportation Museum director, Roanoke

Tiffany Franks, president, Averett University

Cynthia Gray, retired fundraiser, Roanoke

Bob Goodlatte, former member of Congress, Roanoke

Jeff Haley, president and CEO, American National Bank & Trust, Danville

Tonya Hart, former Roanoke Times chief financial officer, Roanoke

Larry Hincker, former public relations executive, Blacksburg

Frank Kilgore, attorney, St. Paul

Charles Majors, board chairman, American National Bank & Trust, Danville

Jeff Mitchell, attorney, Blacksburg

David Neumeyer, executive director, Virginia Legal Aid Society

Molly O’Dell, retired public health director and poet, Buchanan

J.R. Pugh, retired executive, AREVA

Megan Rhyne, Virginia Coalition for Open Government, Williamsburg

Travis Staton, president and CEO, United Way of Southwest Virginia

Neal Sumerlin, retired professor, University of Lynchburg; former director of Belk Astronomical Observatory

Our journalism advisory committee:

Lawrence Emerson, co-founder, Fauquier Now

Caroline Glickman, former editor, The (Lynchburg) News and Advance, former editor, The Roanoke Times

Beth Macy, author, “Dopesick,” “Factory Man,” “Truevine.”

Rich Martin, former managing editor, The Roanoke Times; former head of journalism department, University of Illinois

Joe Stinnett, former editor, The (Lynchburg) News and Advance, former editor, The Roanoke Times

Carole Tarrant, former editor, The Roanoke Times

Leslie Taylor, former reporter and editor, The Roanoke Times; now College Editor, Roanoke College

Ben R. Williams, former reporter, The Martinsville Bulletin

Kelly Zuber, former news director, WDBJ-TV (Channel 7)