Zach Williams is a reporter who covers state politics and the legislature, and also produces the Nonprofit First Read newsletter. He graduated from the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism and has a B.A. in Chinese studies from U.C. Berkeley. His writing, videos, photography and VR have appeared in publications throughout the New York City area, West Africa and California. He lives in Brooklyn.
As editorial assistant, Rebecca compiles the daily First Read newsletter, writes stories for both print and web, helps in the production of the Slant Podcast and generally provides assistance to the editorial team. Rebecca graduated in 2017 from Fordham University, where she studied communications and psychology. She previously worked for the NPR affiliated public radio station WFUV where she won a student award from the Alliance of Women in Media and a professional award from Public Radio News Directors Inc. for the podcast she produced. Rebecca lives on Long Island, but can usually be found at a variety of movie theaters in the city.
Ben Adler is senior editor at City & State NY. He assigns and edits news, feature and opinion articles. Prior to joining City & State, Ben covered national and international politics and policy with specialties in the environment, cities, transportation, civil rights and housing. He was a reporter for Politico, The Nation, and Grist and an editor at Newsweek and Reuters. He also has written for The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, The New Republic, The American Prospect, Columbia Journalism Review, Architectural Record, City Limits and Next City. He holds a bachelor’s degree in American government and public policy from Wesleyan University in Middletown, Connecticut. A native Brooklynite, Ben is excited to focus full-time on covering New York.
Eric is a copy editor at City & State. He edits City & State’s editorial content for the magazine and website to conform to Associated Press style and to correct any grammatical, factual or numerical errors. Eric earned a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and a bachelor’s degree in history and political science from Washington & Jefferson College. He was previously a data reporter at the nonprofit news outlet PublicSource in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Eric lives down the road from MetLife Stadium in New Jersey, but remains a timeworn Washington Redskins fan.
As a staff reporter, Jeff writes stories and develops other content for the magazine, with a particular focus on New York City. He also hosts the City & State Presents podcast and supports events and social media. Jeff previously worked at NY1 and at Bronx-based public radio station WFUV, where he won awards for collegiate newscasting from The Associated Press and Public Radio News Directors Inc. Jeff graduated in 2015 from Fordham University, where he studied political science, theology and Italian food. Born and raised in Phoenix, Jeff now lives in Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn.
As managing editor at City & State, Ryan oversees the workflow and production of all City & State publications and products, including First Read, City & State New York, City & State Pennsylvania, New York Nonprofit Media and City & State Reports. He has been with the company since April 2015. Prior to joining City & State, he worked at the Connecticut Post in Bridgeport, Connecticut, and The Journal News in Westchester, New York. He lives with his wife, Kathy, way at the end of the A in Inwood, Manhattan.
Research Director, Empire Center for Public Policy
THIS YEAR'S RANK: 97CHANGE: -4
LAST YEAR'S RANK: 97
As founder and research director of the Empire Center for Public Policy, E.J. McMahon is a go-to expert on budget plans and policy proposals. His organization promotes greater transparency, accountability and fiscal responsibility in state government, which often puts him at odds with lawmakers and the governor. McMahon previously worked as a journalist in Albany, as an Assembly Republican staffer and a budget adviser for almost 30 years, giving him great insight into the goings-on in the Capitol.