We’ve got some exciting expansion news to share today. 

We’ve grown a lot over the last six months. Within the next few weeks, we will be a team of 10 full-time staff. That’s pretty cool. 

We’re still working to make this sustainable – we need more readers to subscribe, and more organizations to advertise. But through it all, we’ve focused on how to add more reporting about the things that matter in North Carolina, which is why we’re announcing another step in our expansion today.

Hanna Raskin is, to put it simply, a badass ball of fire. She’s a James Beard Award-winning food writer whose buzzy and brilliant newsletter, The Food Section, covers food across the American South. It’s exactly the kind of writing we aspire to – smart, nuanced, and deeply rooted in the concept of place. It’s about not just what we eat, but why it matters. 

We are so pleased to announce a new partnership between The Food Section and The Assembly focused on North Carolina. 

Hanna Raskin, hard at work. (Credit: Allisyn K. Morgan)

Over the coming months, we’ll be hiring journalists at the city-level across the state. That will include reporters covering culture, arts, music, and yes, food. Hanna will help us edit those food reporters. 

She’ll also pen a monthly Assembly newsletter on North Carolina food, with both original work from her and stories from our stable of writers. We’ll be building on the kind of stories we’re already doing – about the new wave of top chefs, the upscale small town restaurant scene, and what would make Florida entrepreneurs bet big on N.C. truffles

She’ll be spending part of her time with us while continuing to publish her very successful newsletter –which you can and should sign up for here. Hanna’s aspiration has been to build a newsroom of journalists across the South dedicated to high-quality food writing. This partnership will help pilot the idea here in North Carolina. 

If you’re signed up for our newsletters, you’ll get this one too! One Sunday a month, it will be our home for N.C. food journalism.

I was in Charleston yesterday for a party celebrating Hanna’s newsletter. (Yes, this partnership means we’ll start doing food-centric events too.) What struck me, besides her energy and talent, is the care, thoughtfulness, and ingenuity she brings to her work. She’s always full of new angles, ideas, and approaches.

Her first newsletter with The Assembly will arrive on March 26. 

In the meantime, we need your help to maintain The Assembly’s momentum and keep building. Growth isn’t guaranteed. It happens because readers take action. 

Subscribe if you haven’t already. Forward this email to a friend and ask them to subscribe. Recommend us to your smart professional friend who might want their organization to advertise with us. Or, send us a note about how you want to write an absurdly large (or reasonably small) check to support great journalism.

Reach me anytime at kyle@theassemblync.com.

Thanks for reading, and making this possible. More to come.

Kyle Villemain is the founder and editor-in-chief of The Assembly. He is a former speechwriter who grew up in the Triangle and graduated from UNC-Chapel Hill.