“Stephanie Kim came to the Wilton Villager as a Regional Fellow in June 2016. For the next 19 months, she covered government, education, features and more in the town of Wilton. But Stephanie really excelled in telling the stories of local people. She did so with dignity and insight, whether it was a profile of a community leader who died, or the Quaker community marking a major anniversary. In February 2018 she was called on to fill in as education reporter for the Norwalk Hour and things got crazy in a hurry. A 6-year-old Norwalk girl died of flu complications and Stephanie chronicled the terrible loss to the family and the school community. A couple days later there was an alarming gun scare at Norwalk High School. Then came the revelation that a student there with Aspberger’s had been bullied by other students, who wrongly gossiped about him being a potential school shooter, to the point he had to leave school permanently. It was a challenging time and if anyone was wondering how Stephanie would handle the jump from a weekly to a daily, they had their answer. She not only rose to the occasion but was fantastic.”

— Thane Grauel, managing editor of The Norwalk Hour with Hearst Connecticut Media

“Ms. Kim is an exceptionally promising young journalist. She was hardworking and professional in manner, asked frequent questions about the ethics of deep human reporting, was willing and able to embed herself in the lives of her subjects, and was unusually watchful for the kind of sights, sounds, emotions and textures that make feature stories come to full life. She blew me away, and I was not surprised when her story from my class won a Hearst Feature Writing award. I’ve had many excellent students who have gone on to do fine work. But, honestly, I harbor perhaps the greatest hope for Ms. Kim’s future achievements—mostly a hope that in our crazy journalism environment of today, Ms. Kim gets the kind of opportunities that will allow her to develop her natural gifts.”

— Walt Harrington, former professor of journalism at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and former staff writer for The Washington Post Magazine

“As a writer, Stephanie Kim is a wonderful storyteller. As a writer of Korean descent, her wonderful stories happen to be perfectly timely and vital to all Americans who wish to know what is unfolding in East Asia.”

— Roya Hakakian, Iranian-American poet and journalist whose writings appear in publications like The New York Times, the Daily Beast / Newsweek, the Wall Street Journal and NPR’s All Things Considered.

“As a newspaper and wire service editor and a journalism educator, I came to recognize resourcefulness as the key ingredient for success in journalism. Resourcefulness is a quality I see a lot of in Stephanie Kim … In addition to her resourcefulness, Stephanie is careful with the language and has a gift for storytelling, regardless of the medium.”

— Edmund Lawler, former journalism instructor at DePaul University

“In my years as an editor, I have never seen anyone who absorbed constructive criticism as well as Stephanie. If I provided feedback on story structure, AP style or tricks to managing our content management system, she was able to listen and make it better on her next round.”

— Elizabeth Newman, executive editor at McKinsey & Company, former senior editor at McKnight’s Long-Term Care News