The Local




Sarah Watlington – Editor in Chief 

My name is Sarah and I am a junior Journalism and Mass Communications major with a concentration in Print and a minor in Religion from Birmingham, Alabama. I am currently an intern at Good Grit Magazine, and a part-time graphic designer at Alphagraphics Hoover. I am passionate about visual storytelling, and leading those around me like Jesus did. I have a lot of dreams for where I could go after graduation next December, but I am positive that I’ll go wherever God leads.




Gunnar Sadowey – Managing Editor

My name is Gunnar and I am a junior journalism major from Elkhart, Indiana. In addition to claiming the role of managing editor of The Local, I serve our department as sports editor of The Samford Crimson. In my free time, I enjoy playing and watching soccer and basketball, hiking and eating BBQ. One fun fact about myself is that I have been to all 50 states.




Alexis Amann – Digital Editor

Hi! I am a senior journalism major with two concentrations in print and advertising as well as a minor in Marketing. I am from Memphis, Tennessee and looking to move to Nashville upon graduation in May 2020 to work in the marketing industry. In my free time, you will find me playing with my mini golden doodle Piper or drinking coffee while people watching in corners of coffee shops!




Daniel Dodson – Director of Sales + Promotions

Hailing from the Washington D.C metro area, I am the director of sales and promotions for the Local. If you are interested in purchasing an ad in the Local, contact me at I am also the editor of The Samford Crimson, the award winning student-run newspaper of Samford University.





Kaitlyn Baker – Visual Team

Originally from Nashville, North Carolina, I am a student at Samford University studying journalism & mass communication and worship leadership. I love all things words and music and seek to use my skills in both to tell people’s stories. If I am not writing for school or work, you might find me writing just for fun at a local coffee shop or writing songs in my room. I’m a multi-instrumentalist, often “winging it” at best. My most recent endeavor is the dulcimer!



Meredith Beck – Visual Team

My name is Meredith and I’m from Franklin, Tennessee.  I’m a senior studying Print Journalism Major with a minor in Spanish.  After graduation, I plan to pursue a career in Communications for a non-profit ministry.  Currently, I have two internships as a Design Intern for Keeping the Creativity and Development Intern for Lifeline Children’s Services.  My passions include ethical orphan care, layout design, and community engagement.




Stephen DeFrancesco – Visual Team

I am a senior Journalism & Mass Communications major with a minor in marketing. As part of the Visual Team of The Local, I use my passion and knowledge of visual design to tell stories. Upon graduation in May, I plan to go into the music industry and do communications for artists and management companies.





Shelly Fulks – Digital Team

I am a senior from Columbia, Tennessee. As a public relations and print student, I love bringing my two passions together by working to tell the stories of exciting things in the communities that I live in. I love to travel, read and explore new spots with my friends. I will graduate in May 2020 and excited to see where the Lord will take me after Samford.




Tori Green – Digital Team

Hi! My name is Tori Green and I’m originally from Lakeland, Florida. I am a senior majoring in Journalism and Mass Communication, concentrating in Public Relations and Print Journalism; while also pursuing a minor in General Business. As my time is spread over many organizations and different areas around campus, I have learned discipline on how to prioritize and stay organized. I will graduate in May of 2020 and look to pursue a career in Public Relations and Event Planning in Birmingham, Alabama.




Cassidy Robinson – Sales + Promotions Team

Hi! My name is Cassidy Robinson and I am a junior from Atlanta, Georgia. I am a double major, studying both Journalism & Mass Communications and English. I am passionate about traveling, dining, and Disney. Although I am unsure what I am planning on doing after graduation, I am excited about what the future holds.





Katie Roth – Sales + Promotions Team

Hey, I’m Katie Roth. I’m a Journalism and Mass Communications major finishing up my last semester at Samford. I’m originally from the Atlanta area, but have adopted Birmingham as my home for the past four years. My work has been previously published in Homewood Life MagazineMountain Brook MagazineVestavia Hills Magazine, and Hoover’s Magazine. I am passionate about photography and hope to put my writing and photography skills to use working for another magazine or online publication after May graduation.