Katie Galioto interned at the Star Tribune in 2018 after she graduated from the University of Notre Dame with a degree in political science. She had stints at the Chicago Tribune and Politico before we hired her the following year to help launch our Duluth bureau and the North Report newsletter. Now she covers St. Paul City Hall and is a key part of our St. Paul newsletter. She enjoys traveling, good music, good restaurants and her good dog, Tucker.
Q: You grew up in Eden Prairie and Chanhassen. Did you read the newspaper as a kid?
A: Every morning growing up, there was a copy of the Star Tribune on the front lawn. I have reported on local governments for a few years now, but I admittedly did not develop my interest in City Halls at a young age. The comic section was my go-to. My favorite edition of the paper was always the annual "Oh, You Turkey" Thanksgiving coloring contest, which I unsuccessfully poured my heart and soul into every November as an elementary student. And my name actually appeared in the Star Tribune at least once before I started having bylines — in the caption of a photo that showed me as a cheering Basilica Block Party fan in high school.
Q: Why journalism?
A: I didn't always plan on becoming a journalist, but I think I ended up in the industry for two reasons. First, I love how every day is different and interesting — just in the last year, reporting assignments have taken me to a world-class dog sled race, a karaoke dive bar and presidential campaign rallies. How many other jobs would do that? Second, I feel there's a value in sharing and bearing witness to local stories. I've always liked to read and write, so this seemed like a good way for me to learn about and contribute to the communities in which I've lived.
Q: What does your day-to-day work look like?
A: As the St. Paul City Hall reporter, I focus on stories about how city government affects residents of Minnesota's Capital City. Some days that means summarizing the events of a three-hour City Council meeting, and some days that means asking questions to hold elected officials accountable. Ultimately, my goal is to help explain and inform the public about what their local government is doing and why they're doing it.
Q: Metro dailies have been scaling back for years, are you worried about the future of the industry?
A: I think there will always be a need for good journalism at the local level. That doesn't mean it will always look the same. The Star Tribune product I grew up reading is in many ways different than the one I read today, and I expect it will have to adapt more in the coming years to reach new audiences. The future may be uncertain, but I also think it's exciting to think about how we can better use digital tools to explain a local election or investigate a public agency. In the age of social media, having a trusted source that performs the core functions of journalism is perhaps more important than ever.
Q: How can a major metro daily like the Star Tribune appeal to young readers?
A: I think the solution to this elusive question involves a lot of listening and experimenting. Certainly I expect metro dailies to continue transforming the way they gather and present news for digital readers, since I can count on my hand the number of 20-something print subscribers I know. But people in their 20s still have an appetite for quirky news features, local traffic updates, revelatory investigations, informative data dives, illustrative photojournalism — we just have to keep searching for ways to engage and earn the trust of readers who are likely scrolling through an overwhelming amount of information on the internet each day. By highlighting new and diverse voices, exploring evolving platforms and sustaining dialogue with our audiences, I think local news outlets like the Star Tribune can continue to serve generations of readers to come.