Connecticut Public Names Vanessa de la Torre as New Chief Content Officer
HARTFORD [January 30, 2024] – Connecticut Public is delighted to announce the appointment of Vanessa de la Torre as the organization's new Chief Content Officer effective February 12 following an extensive national search.
Vanessa joined Connecticut Public in 2018 as the race, identity and culture reporter. In 2020, she took on the challenge of leading and developing the New England News Collaborative (NENC), demonstrating exceptional leadership. Under her guidance, the NENC has grown to become a nine-station consortium of public media newsrooms expanding station collaboration, regional news, and innovative digital products, including "Our New England" and "Conexión," the NENC’s bilingual video series focusing on Latinos and their connections to New England nature and the outdoors.
Prior to her role at Connecticut Public, de la Torre brings a wealth of professional experiences, including 11 years as a local news and Hartford schools reporter for the Hartford Courant, as well as reporting for The St. Petersburg Times, The Washington Post, and her hometown paper, The Imperial Valley Press.
As Chief Content Officer, de la Torre will lead all of Connecticut Public content including radio, television and digital content with a mission to inform, educate, and inspire audiences across the state. This will include efforts to reach new, more diverse communities across Connecticut Public’s more than 60 digital platforms.
De la Torre will lead several content teams including the newsroom, storytelling, TV and radio productions, social media, visuals and The Accountability Project investigative reporting unit. In addition, she will retain oversight responsibilities for the NENC.
"Vanessa's past journalism and leadership experience make her the perfect choice to lead our content efforts," said Mark G. Contreras, President and CEO of Connecticut Public. “What sets her apart is not just her professional accomplishments but her unwavering dedication to collaborative leadership. Vanessa is not just a seasoned journalist; she is a leader, a collaborator, and someone who inspires people to do their best work.”
De la Torre’s impactful work in journalism has garnered several significant recognitions, including being part of the Hartford Courant team that was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Reporting in 2013 for the Courant’s coverage of the Sandy Hook school shooting. She has also won a Regional Emmy® Award, Investigative Reporting awards from the Education Writers Association, and the Stephen A. Collins Public Service Award, the top honor from the Connecticut Society of Professional Journalists (SPJ) in 2018, among others.
De la Torre has also participated in a number of media leadership programs including Public Media Women in Leadership’s Public Media CEO/COO Bootcamp, Greater Public’s DEI Executive Forum, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting’s Editorial Integrity and Leadership Initiative, Poynter Institute’s Power of Diverse Voices, and the American Society of News Editors’ Emerging Leaders Institute.
“I love that public media gives us the power to make an impact in the world every day, on all platforms,” said de la Torre. “It’s a dream to take on this role at Connecticut Public and guide our talented team to create our best work to inspire and serve diverse communities across our state.”
De la Torre's journey is a testament to her dedication and passion for journalism. Raised in El Centro, California and driven by her innate curiosity, de la Torre pursued her education at Princeton University, earning an A.B. in English in 2004. She further honed her skills at Stanford University, obtaining a M.A. in Communication, Graduate Program in Journalism in 2005. In 2023, she was awarded a certificate of specialization in Leadership and Management from Harvard Business School Online. De la Torre serves on the board of the award-winning New England chapter of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists (NAHJ).
She is the proud mother of two daughters, Ruby and Lola, and resides with her wife Leah in West Hartford, CT.
About Connecticut Public
Connecticut Public is home to Connecticut Public Television (CPTV) and Connecticut Public Radio (WNPR). Together, Connecticut Public serves more than one million people each week through Connecticut Public Radio and Connecticut Public Television, as well as through more than 60 digital and online platforms, including ctpublic.org. Through our mission to inform, educate and inspire the people of Connecticut, we connect people of all ages to high-quality journalism, storytelling, education and experiences, and amplify the voices of our diverse communities. Connecticut Public’s main offices are located in Hartford, CT with studios at Gateway Community College in New Haven, CT as well as Fairfield University in Fairfield, CT. Connecticut Public is also sole owner of the for-profit MediaVision Creative agency in Norwalk, CT. Connecticut Public is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, with a $22 million annual budget, funded primarily through community support from individuals, foundations and corporate sponsors.