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The TV News Bureau - Fall 2003

Their work airs weeknights at 7:30 p.m. on UMTV. That's Channel 72 in Prince George's County; Channel 2 in Montgomery County. All CNS-TV reporters are reachable at

The TV Bureau Crew, Fall 2003.  (Photo by Stephen Mather / Maryland Newsline)
The fall 2003 TV news crew, (standing, from left): Jeffrey Schonfeld, Bureau Chief David Burns, Jamie Houston, Laura Lewis, Kasey Gardner, Kristina Bigby, Amanda Johnson, Ravinder Rai; (sitting, from left): Tiffany L. Francis, Dorothy Ramienski. Diana Alvear is not pictured. (Photo by Stephen Mather / Maryland Newsline)

The bureau chief:
David Burns has worked for CNN and NBC News as a videotape editor and field camera operator in the United States and abroad. While living abroad, Burns also worked as a technology correspondent for the IDG Wire Service bureau in Paris, wrote a technology column for Capital, a Polish business and finance weekly newspaper in Warsaw, and taught journalism courses for local universities in Poland and Jordan. He can be reached at

The grad students:

Diana Alvear, 26, covers the multicultural affairs beat for CNS-TV, exploring issues of diversity in Maryland. She has freelanced for Maryland Public Television and interned in the BBCís Washington, D.C., bureau. Of Chilean descent, the Miami native received her undergraduate degree in political science at the University of Florida, where she also double-minored in mass communication and women's studies. Before entering Marylandís graduate journalism program, she worked in community development at the United Way of Miami-Dade. She speaks Spanish and French.

Kristina Bigby, 25, covers education for CNS-TV.  Her undergraduate degree is from the University of Virginia; she majored in psychology and minored in English. Following graduation, she worked as a front line manager for Capital One. Bigby interned in WBAL-TVís (Baltimore) sports department and at Business Now TV in Virginia.

Tiffany Francis, 23, will cover the transportation beat for CNS-TV. She has a bachelorís degree from Hampton University, where she hosted a weekly Jazz and Blues show for WHOV, the campusís student radio station. She has interned at WPGC-FM in Washington, D.C., and in Black Entertainment Televisionís Production/News Department. She worked most recently as a technical assistant for Fairfax Public Access in Virginia.

Laura Lewis, 26, will cover crime and justice, as well as issues affecting Baltimore City. She has a bachelorís degree in English and psychology from Georgetown University. Most recently, she has been freelancing for the Baltimore City Paper and working part time for the Baltimore Ravens' television property, Rave-TV. Before entering graduate school, she was the senior news editor for WBAL-TV's (Baltimore) Web site, and a freelance editor for AOL's Her online column on dating and relationships is carried on several local Web sites on the IBS national network.

Ravinder Rai, 23, will cover Montgomery County news for CNS-TV. Rai graduated from the College of Wooster in 2002 with a bachelor's degree in communication studies. His previous work experience has included internships at WPGC-FM and WJLA-TV in Washington, D.C., as well as a brief stint as a law clerk for Horace Bradshaw Esq. 

The undergrads:

Kasey Gardner, 21, is a senior broadcast journalism major from Annapolis, Md. She will cover the military beat for CNS-TV. She has interned at WJZ-TV in Baltimore and will graduate in May.

Jamie Houston, 22, covers health and the environment for CNS-TV.  A native of Marylandís Eastern Shore, she has covered news from the stateís coast.  She has interned as a general assignment reporter for WBOC in Salisbury and as a production assistant for Comcast Cable Television. After graduating in December, she hopes to find a job as a field reporter.

Amanda Johnson, 23, is a senior broadcast major covering homeland security issues for CNS-TV. A Nebraska native, she has interned at KLKN in Lincoln and KETV in Omaha. She also worked as an assistant in the investigative reporting unit at Fox45 in Baltimore and occupied the anchor desk for Maryland Newsline in 2002. Johnson will graduate in December and hopes to work as a reporter and eventually a full-time news anchor. 

Dorothy Ramienski, 21, covers  Maryland state budget issues for CNS-TV.  She is a senior undergraduate student with both radio and television news reporting experience. She has interned as a reporter for Howard Countyís GTV station and for WFMD News Radio in Frederick, Md. She has served as a reporter and producer for the campus radio station, WMUC. 

Jeffrey Schonfeld, 27, covers Prince George's County government and Marylandís business sector for CNS-TV. Schonfeld earned a history degree from Ithaca College in 1997 and is completing a degree in broadcast journalism from the University of Maryland. After working and traveling the country for the past five years, Schonfeld is happy to be back on the East Coast full time.


Copyright © 2003 University of Maryland Philip Merrill College of Journalism

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