VPM News Focal Point: About The Team
VPM News Focal Point is a weekly half-hour television broadcast framing statewide news through a lens of in-depth reporting on the week’s pressing issues. Viewers can expect nuanced coverage of politics, race, business, health, our environment, science, arts, and culture. Angie Miles, the show’s anchor, will host discussions in the studio with a diverse group of community leaders, experts, advocates, workers, and lawmakers, offering fresh ideas and perspectives from across the state. Each week, VPM News Focal Point will strive to help Virginians better understand our state, our neighbors, and ourselves, using our complex history to contextualize contemporary Virginia.
Angie Miles, Host/Producer, is one of Virginia’s most experienced broadcast journalists, known for her decades of anchoring at WTVR CBS 6 and WWBT NBC 12 in Richmond, and reporting at WVIR in Charlottesville and WVPT in Harrisonburg. She founded a literacy nonprofit called HAPPY Reading and taught broadcast news at Virginia Commonwealth University. Miles holds two degrees from the University of Virginia, a bachelor's in Communications and a master's degree in Education. With deep connections across Virginia, Miles will anchor the show and host VPM News Focal Point and special broadcasts.
Shawn Freude, Executive Producer, is an award-winning producer, director and storyteller with decades of public media experience. She started her TV career at ICB-TV in Ithaca, NY and worked in news production at ABC11 in Durham, NC. In Virginia, Freude led multiple teams to create television and digital-first content, nationally distributed political debates, and PBS-led initiatives for VPM and its predecessors and has produced hundreds of television interviews featuring community members.
Roberta Oster, Senior Producer, is an Emmy Award-winning producer with two decades of experience in network news at Dateline NBC, CBS Street Stories with Ed Bradley and ABC documentaries. She covered education, human rights, business, politics, and the arts, across the US and the world. Oster has also served as Communications Director at the Virginia Interfaith Center for Public Policy, Associate Dean for External Relations at the University of Richmond School of Law, and as a journalism professor at Tufts University. She holds a bachelor's from Georgetown University, a master's degree in Public Administration from Harvard Kennedy School, and she was a Knight Professional Journalism Fellow at Stanford University.
Adrienne Hoar McGibbon, News Producer, is a multimedia journalist, who has focused her reporting on the intersection of history, public affairs and politics. Before joining VPM, McGibbon worked as a producer and video journalist at C-SPAN in Washington, D.C. She traveled the country shooting pieces and interviewing people about American history. Prior to that she worked in local newsrooms in Hartford, CT and Des Moines, Iowa. McGibbon has covered presidential elections since 2004, and the federal response to Hurricane Katrina and COVID-19. Over the past several years her reporting has focused on Congress, the Supreme Court and the White House. The Richmond native earned a bachelor's in Broadcast Journalism from Emerson College in Boston and a master's degree in Political Communication from The Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore.
Keyris Manzanares, Multimedia Reporter, is a bilingual multimedia journalist and is passionate about covering stories that impact underserved and underrepresented communities. Before VPM, Manzanares worked as a digital content reporter and producer at WRIC ABC 8News. There, she created and anchored HOY EN RVA, a digital-first initiative to inform the Latino community of Central Virginia. Manzanares has covered immigration, COVID-19 and civil rights issues, among other breaking news stories in Richmond. Manzanares graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University with a bachelor's degree in Broadcast Journalism.
Billy Shields, Multimedia Reporter, has decades of journalism experience in television, radio and print. Before joining VPM he worked as an MMJ for TV news outlets in Montreal, Canada and for newspapers in Mexico, Miami and the Caribbean. He has won awards for a retrospective on the Oka Crisis and investigations into questionable sewage contracts in the Virgin Islands and the gray market of lawsuit loans in Miami. Shields earned a bachelor's from Kenyon College and a master's in Latin American Studies and Journalism from the University of Florida. He's a member of the National Press Photographers Association, a former trainer with Journalists for Human Rights and a Canadian citizen. Shields was born and raised in Richmond and began his career as a cub reporter for the Tidewater Review in West Point, Va.
Emmanuel Tambakakis, Videographer/Editor, is an award-winning television and photojournalist with decades of experience in local and network news. Prior to joining VPM, Tambakakis worked as a photojournalist for KPNX NBC 12 in Phoenix, AZ, and CNN in New York City. Tambakakis shot and edited interviews, features and general segments for WCBS CBS 2 in New York, Al-Jazeera English and Reuters as an independent photojournalist. Tambakakis has also reported from outside the U.S., including Costa Rica, Nicaragua, Honduras, Mexico, Iraq, and the Democratic Republic of Congo and speaks Spanish, Greek, and French.
Bryant Dameron is a television producer and director at VPM, where he has worked in creative roles since 2008. Dameron specializes in video switching and editing. His current projects include producing and directing Virginia Home Grown and directing VPM News Focal Point studio segments. His work on multiple programs has been recognized for excellence in television by the Telly Awards. Dameron holds a bachelor's in Communications from Virginia Tech and an MFA in Photography and Film from Virginia Commonwealth University.
Adam Hamza, Associate Producer, is a multimedia journalist based in central Virginia with a passion for telling meaningful stories that impact and inform the community. Before joining VPM, Hamza reported on local events and news as an independent journalist for VCU's Robertson School of Media & Culture and Capital News Service. Hamza has produced news for multiple platforms covering various topics, including healthcare, technology, higher education and the Virginia General Assembly. Hamza holds a bachelor's in International Relations from George Mason University and a master's in Multimedia Journalism from Virginia Commonwealth University.
Elijah Hedrick serves as the Production Manager for VPM News Focal Point. After receiving a B.S. in Mass Communication from Virginia Commonwealth University, Hedrick worked in TV News Production at WTVR CBS 6 as a Technical Director for 3 years. He was responsible for executing multiple live-news broadcasts every weekday morning. Hedrick is known around Richmond for being a passionate advocate for the Virginia music scene. In 2020, he founded HearRVA to help spotlight musicians by creating and hosting the Richmond interview show “Liner Notes”. As the production manager for VPM News Focal Point, Hedrick manages the operational functions and broadcast-digital workflow for this innovative news program.
Mary Arritt, Community Engagement Manager, is working with VPM News Focal Point to build community engagement efforts within the station's news division. Arritt is a proud lifelong listener, viewer, and supporter of public media. With VPM, she builds intentional and authentic relationships with communities throughout Virginia. She has worked with community partners on a variety of award-winning broadcast and engagement projects including Racism: Challenging Perceptions, HEARD and StoryCorps’ One Small Step. She is also a co-founder of RVA MakerFest and Build, RVA. Arritt serves on the PBS Community Engagement & Impact Advisory Committee and VPM’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion committee.