Richmond Reporter is a pilot digital journalism project of Progress Virginia that seeks to explain the impact of often complex and unevenly covered legislative policies on everyday Virginians, particularly during the Commonwealth’s General Assembly session.

Given the notable decline in the number of journalists assigned to cover state politics, Virginians face a gap in reliable, accurate, and consistent news coverage on the deliberations and actions of their elected leaders in the General Assembly. Thus, everyday Virginians have fewer resources to help them understand and become engaged in issues that matter to them.

Progress Virginia, as an advocacy organization committed to advancing progressive issues, launched the Richmond Reporter project to fill this void.

By providing timely, relatable journalistic news and analysis to the Virginia public on progressive issues, the Richmond Reporter will become the new source on progressive issues in the state—supporting civic engagement and promoting transparency and accountability in government for all residents.

The project’s Richmond-based journalist will cover breaking news and conduct real-time reporting, focusing on complex or under-reported issues important to minority and marginalized populations (including communities of color and LGBTQ individuals and families, to name a few).

The project will work closely alongside Eyes on Richmond, a ground-breaking and award-winning video reporting project (launched in 2017) that streamed General Assembly hearings to Virginians for the first time in the state’s history.


Mary Lee ClarkMary Lee was raised in Luray, VA where she started her career covering local events for the Page News and Courier. In 2015, she moved to Richmond to attend Virginia Commonwealth University where she studied journalism, history and politics. 
Mary Lee got her first taste of state political reporting while working with Capital News Service at VCU. In 2017, she wrote about gerrymandering, the opioid epidemic and other legislative issues for publications such as The Washington Post, U.S. News and World Report, and The Virginian-Pilot.
Mary Lee lives in Richmond where she spends her free time reading, exploring the local beer scene and planning her next travel adventure. Find Mary Lee on Twitter @_MaryLeeClark_ to say hi or ask a question. Email Mary Lee at


Richmond Reporter is a project of Progress Virginia.

Progress Virginia is the voice of Virginia’s progressive majority. We stand up for progressive values and hold the right wing accountable. Progress Virginia is a campaign that never stops. Candidates come and go. We’re here year round fighting to build a future where every Virginian can succeed, no matter their background.

In 2011, we were founded to be an aggressive voice for a progressive Virginia. In 2018, we know our mission is more critical than ever. Now is the time to stand up, to fight back, to resist.

Because we are pioneering progress, together.


If you've enjoyed Richmond Reporter, we would recommend checking out Eyes on Richmond. Eyes on Richmond is an award-winning government transparency project of Progress Virginia.

Launched in 2017, Eyes on Richmond aimed to stream Virginia General Assembly legislative hearings for the first time ever—often bringing to light commentary, deliberation, and even votes from elected officials that had previously never been streamed or broadcast publicly. Because of this work, the project won the Virginia Coalition for Open Government’s Laurence E. Richardson Citizen Award.