The Dawn of a New Presidency

Photo by Jacob Wallace

Photo by Jacob Wallace

By Dean’s Intern Shira Stein at The Durango Herald

My first day on assignment for The Durango Herald also happened to be the dawn of a new presidency.

As the Durango Herald Dean’s Intern, my job is to be a one-woman Washington bureau for the residents of Southwest Colorado. On a normal day, that means heading to Capitol Hill and reporting on what the two Colorado senators and Durango’s congressman, Rep. Scott Tipton, are doing.

On January 20, my job was to cover the inauguration from a Colorado perspective. I was lucky enough to have received a press ticket for the day, so I got up at 4 A.M. and headed down to the National Mall with my friend, Jacob Wallace, who doubled as my photographer for the day. After hours of waiting, the ceremony started and I saw our next president take the oath of office.

Jacob and I headed to the parade route to talk to people who were attending the day’s festivities when we heard about some protestors a few blocks North of us. When we arrived, the tear gassing was over and around 100 people were being arrested. I was able to get enough cell service (which was difficult to come by on the crowded National Mall) to do a Facebook Live stream. We then heard about another protest a few blocks away, so we headed there to find piles of trash burning. The trash burning turned into a limo being set on fire, and as the smoke billowed up 14th Street, Jacob and I got separated.

Eventually, we met back up at a metro station and headed home with a notebook full of quotes and a camera full of photos.

When I started this internship, I wasn’t sure if I was interested in political reporting. But, after almost two months of exploring the Capitol and writing stories on everything from the Women’s March on Washington to the Stream Protection Rule, I know it’s something I want to keep pursuing.