Chris L. Keller
This includes diving into documents and datasets to find trends. It means placing news events into proper context. It requires tools that make gathering information and surfacing stories more efficient. See, I enjoy breaking down barriers that prevent access to data. I find satisfaction in documenting a process or a workflow to help others work smarter in the future.
As managing editor of Albuquerque Business First, I help our staff prioritize daily and long-term projects. I coach reporters on everything from interviewing techniques to using data and public records to improving their writing. As time permits and news warrants, I find time to pursue data-driven storytelling and automated reporting projects.
I've worked in a variety of roles in various newsrooms since 2002, including as a graphics journalist with the Los Angeles Times' 2020 election team and at KPCC where my work on officer-involved shootings and California wildfires earned multiple awards.
Here is my current resume.
I think these examples of my work demonstrate my skills and my approach to journalism.
Last fall, I spearheaded an effort to provide context for the claim that a proposed soccer stadium would lead to "250 full-time jobs." The reporting leaned on data gleaned from local television ad buys, lobbyist records and other publicly available data. A subsequent records request and analysis found Albuquerque officials approached property owners about selling their parcels prior to any stadium location being finalized. After Albuquerque voters cast their ballots against the stadium proposal, I led a next-day analysis of precinct-level votes to understand support and opposition. For good measure, I hosted an online workshop to show others in Albuquerque how they could do something similar.
Lately, I’ve jumped back into “MadLibs” journalism — inspired by the likes of Matt Waite, Ben Welsh, Ken Schwencke and others — and brought the concept into Observable notebooks. A recent example takes monthly residential housing reports and attempts to turn them into contextual stories about the Albuquerque market. The residential housing market notebook builds off experiments conducted with the state of New Mexico’s Covid-19 metrics and Albuquerque building permits.
When it came time to find patterns in police shootings that took place in Los Angeles County between 2010 and 2014, I helped to develop the database and backend application that powered KPCC’s award-winning investigation Officer Involved. I gave this presentation about the project's origin. I think it offers a glimpse into a process I follow for a new project, whether for an internal or external audience. Essentially, I find it important to outline our primary goal and begin to understand what has been done before.
When I couldn't find a comprehensive calendar of primary dates and other events during the 2020 primary season I built a curated calendar feed that readers can subscribe to.
After a series of earthquakes in the Mojave Desert, I began to look for patterns and stories in the aftershocks. I made some music out of it.
When our newsroom faced a repetitive workflow when trying to inform our audience about wildfires we developed the award-winning Fire Tracker.