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I’m happy to announce that Renzo Downey will be joining us on Feb. 1 as the lead writer of The Blast, our premium politics newsletter.
Renzo has been covering state government for Florida Politics, based in Tallahassee, since 2019. Named newsletter editor last March, he manages, writes and edits the weekly “Takeaways from Tallahassee” and daily “Last Call” newsletters. He impressed us with his passion for newsletters as a critical way to engage readers in an ongoing dialogue. He is eager to dive into the world of the lobbyists, lawyers, regulators and communications and government relations professionals who make Austin tick.
In Florida, Renzo has broken stories on Gov. Ron DeSantis’ administration, analyzed data on Republican success in registering voters and even written a Python script that helped Florida Politics be the first to provide daily state COVID-19 case updates at the start of the pandemic.
Before moving to Florida, Renzo was a state desk intern at the Austin American-Statesman in 2019, where he covered the Texas House of Representatives, Beto O’Rourke’s presidential campaign and the impact of a month-plus federal government shutdown.
A native of the San Francisco Bay Area, Renzo graduated from Northwestern University in 2019, where he double-majored in journalism and political science, with a minor in geography. He is a member of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists and an Eagle Scout.
Renzo will report to senior managing editor Ayan Mittra and will work closely with the politics and audience teams, as well as revenue, product, marketing and RevLab colleagues. Please join me in welcoming him to the Tribune.