The News Literacy Project Adds Capacity with Two New Staff Members

The News Literacy Project has hired two staff members to build its capacity, strengthen its educational and digital programs, and expand in New York City.

Whitney Allgood will be the project’s first chief of staff. She will oversee day-to-day operations and help to enhance NLP’s curriculum materials, assessment processes and educational model.

Darragh Worland, a journalist and multimedia educator and consultant, is the project’s second New York program coordinator. She will work to expand NLP in New York City schools and with other partners and assist with video and other multimedia initiatives. She succeeds Melissa Nicolardi, NLP’s original New York coordinator, who is returning to school full-time to complete a master’s degree.

"We were fortunate to have a strong pool of applicants, which yielded two outstanding new employees," said John Carroll, chairman of the NLP board. "I’m confident that Whitney, serving as deputy to the NLP founder, Alan Miller, will help us accelerate our expansion nationally. In New York, Darragh will provide the strong leadership we’ll need to build upon our already substantial presence."

Whitney and Darragh join NLP president and CEO Alan Miller; curriculum director Bob Jervis, program coordinator Kate Ferrall and Chicago program manager Peter Adams. The project is beginning its fourth year.

Before joining NLP, Whitney was the director of assessment and accountability at the District of Columbia’s Office of the State Superintendent of Education, where she managed contracts to develop, produce, administer and score state tests for students in all D.C. public and charter schools. She also facilitated the adoption of national Common Core Standards and contributed to the District’s selection by the U.S. Department of Education as a Race to the Top grantee.

She previously spent two years as a fellow with the Strategic Data Project at Harvard University’s Center for Education Policy Research. The Gates Foundation-funded project seeks to improve student achievement by promoting evidence-based decision-making. As a fellow, Whitney worked in the Office of Accountability at the Charlotte-Mecklenburg (N.C.) Schools.

Whitney began her career as an English and social studies teacher. A graduate of the University of Florida, she has a master’s degree in secondary English education from Rollins College and a doctorate in educational policy from Peabody College at Vanderbilt University.

Darragh worked for six years at NY1 News, a Time Warner-owned cable outlet that covers the city, and then as a senior producer for MSN Money, where she covered the financial crisis, shooting and producing video features for the web. She also freelanced for Fox News for three years as a web news editor and reporter.

Since 2007, Darragh has been an adjunct assistant professor at New York University’s Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute, where she has worked on the Local East Village blog in partnership with The New York Times. In 2010, ABC News retained her to train its staff in digital video production as part of the organization’s move toward a "digital journalist" model.

She has also designed and taught online and in-class multimedia courses for Mediabistro to help print journalists and communications professionals around the world keep pace with the changing media landscape.

Darragh is a graduate of the University of Toronto, where she studied English and drama, and has a master’s degree in journalism from NYU.

Both positions are funded through a three-year grant from the Charles H. Revson Foundation in New York City.