CBS profiles Local Expansions & Investigative Journalism

Sunday Morning Overview

CBS News “Sunday Morning” profiled The Post and Courier-led “Uncovered” project on July 2, highlighting the newspaper and its partner efforts to expose corruption and questionable government conduct throughout South Carolina.

The Post and Courier launched the project in 2021 with a handful of print media partners. It has since grown to include a network of 19 community newspapers from every corner of the Palmetto State.  The project produced more than 70 stories to date, spawning reform initiatives and at least 10 state investigations and audits in the process.

Ted Koppel dove into The Post and Courier’s growth strategies in the ever changing publishing industry, observing, “Manigault is bucking the trend: hiring more staff, expanding digitally across the state, and investing heavily in, of all things, a state-of-the-art printing press.”

The Post and Courier is acutely aware that small newspapers across the country are closing their doors, thus contributing to the staggering fact that 70 million Americans live in “news deserts”.  Koppel pointed out that the impact of news deserts is dire – “absent a source of reliable local news and scrutiny of local officials, can lead to the spread of disinformation and corruption.”

The Post and Courier’s commitment to ending news deserts with local expansions and upholding democracy with investigative journalism is the fuel behind the paper’s growth.

Read more about The Post and Courier’s commitment to local market expansions.

Local Newspaper Market Expansions = New Business Opportunities Across the State

As The Post and Courier’s audience continues to grow, so does the audience our business partners have access to reaching with advertising efforts.  Furthermore, the grassroot investigative journalism that is being conducted in local communities would not be possible without the continued support from our readers, business partners, and donors to the Investigative Fund.

Top Editor Changes at The Post and Courier

Top Leadership Changes

Changes are coming to top editor positions at The Post and Courier as South Carolina’s largest newspaper continues to grow and expand its offerings.

Executive Editor Autumn Phillips has been promoted to the newly created position of editor-in-chief, effective Aug. 1. In this role, Phillips will oversee two significant growth opportunities for the newspaper: philanthropic fundraising and the launch of a new venture in which she will lead readers on international trips.

“Autumn is a veteran world traveler and journalist,” Publisher P.J. Browning said. “She will teach participants how to write about the journey as a way of deepening the experience.”

Veteran journalist Jeff Taylor has been hired as The Post and Courier’s new executive editor after a national search. Taylor, who also will start Aug. 1, is an award-winning newsman who most recently served as vice president and executive editor for news and investigations at USA Today.

“Jeff comes to us with a tremendous background as a journalist and has held many executive leadership positions,” Browning said.

For Phillips, the move allows her to keenly focus on two of her driving passions: writing and travel. During her 5½ years at The Post and Courier, she has written several pieces about her sojourns to far-flung places such as Lebanon, Sudan and Kyrgyzstan. Beginning next year, she will bring readers along on her journeys.

Subscribers will also have a limited number of travel opportunities with other Post and Courier journalists as they report on international connections to Charleston. Photographers will teach them how to capture the journey, and reporters will show them how to see a place through the lens of climate change, history or food, Browning said.

Back at home, Taylor will oversee the daily operations of The Post and Courier as it continues to expand across South Carolina. In addition to its home base in Charleston, the newspaper has newsrooms in Columbia, Greenville, Myrtle Beach, Hilton Head, Florence and Rock Hill. As he charts a path forward, Taylor will lean on a wealth of experience gleaned from a long and distinguished career in journalism, Browning said.

Read more about Phillips and Taylor, along with other news, on

New Ventures and Continued Focus on Digital Expansion

The impact of Autumn Phillips new venture on the community will be profound, as subscribers will have the opportunity to partake in travel experiences with other Post and Courier journalists, gaining insights into international connections to Charleston.  Jeff Taylor is poised to spearhead The Post and Courier’s digital expansion, bringing forth positive changes for business partners, advertisers, and the Charleston community.

Recognizing the paper’s impact, community connection, and high regard among South Carolinians, Taylor is thrilled to join a platform that embodies his passion for “big-J journalism” and its potential to make a meaningful difference in people’s lives. Taylor’s vision revolves around bolstering The Post and Courier’s digital footprint, attracting new generations of readers who will shape the newspaper’s future.

By capitalizing on the paper’s reputation for producing penetrating and context-rich stories that provide a comprehensive understanding of the interconnected pieces, Taylor intends to offer content that cannot be found elsewhere.

This digital expansion will not only enhance engagement with existing partners but also attract new business and advertising collaborations. Ultimately, the Charleston community stands to benefit from Phillip’s and Taylor’s dedication to elevating journalism and fostering a deeper understanding of local and international issues.

Spotlight: National Headliner and Journalism Awards

A bicyclist passes by The American Theater with the sign reading "Go Away Ian" on Thursday, Sept. 29, 2022 in Charleston | Andrew J. Whitaker, Photojournalist of the Year
A bicyclist passes by The American Theater with the sign reading “Go Away Ian” on Thursday, Sept. 29, 2022 in Charleston | Andrew J. Whitaker, Photojournalist of the Year

Post and Courier staff has received 94 awards from the SC Press association and two National Headliners awards this year.  The Post and Courier prides itself on being a highly credible news source for readers across South Carolina and these awards are a testimony to the extensive qualifications of the publication.  These reporters, photojournalists and editors have amassed extensive audiences that our business partners have been able to reach through various advertising and sponsorship opportunities.  Follow along to learn more about these notable awards and the people behind the stories.

Editor Awards

Avery Wilks, chief investigative reporter for The Post and Courier in Columbia, was named South Carolina’s Journalist of the Year.

Avery Wilks, investigative reporter for The Post and Courier
Avery Wilks, Investigative Reporter for The Post and Courier

Wilks, who joined the newspaper in 2020, had his hands on many of the state’s biggest stories last year. He was the lead reporter on the many-faceted Murdaugh murders saga while also heading coverage of the dozen South Carolinians charged in connection with the Jan. 6, 2021, assault on the Capitol in Washington, D.C.

Wilks also produced numerous investigative stories that exposed rampant misspending at one of the state’s largest school districts, revealed that a small town clerk had given herself a $30,000 raise from a pot of federal money she controls and uncovered a state senator’s mysterious history of sitting on state grant checks owed to charities in his district — to the tune of $600,000. He did this while also producing political profiles, helping lead a new podcast, and coaching high school and college students on the tenets of journalism.

National Headliner Awards

The Post and Courier has received a pair of prestigious journalism honors from the National Headliner Awards.

Jennifer Berry Hawes, Former Special Projects Writer for The Post and Courier
Jennifer Berry Hawes, Former Special Projects Writer for The Post and Courier

Former reporter Jennifer Berry Hawes received a first-place award in the feature writing category for journalists working outside a top 20 media market.  Hawes was honored for a portfolio that included stories about an intellectually disabled man subjected to horrific labor trafficking, an examination of a man long reputed to be the leader of a massive but doomed slave rebellion in Charleston, and a police chief’s battle back from a rare and devastating cancer that cost him a leg and hip.

Hawes and colleague Thad Moore also won a second-place nod for investigative reporting by newspapers not in a top 20 market.

They won for “Danger on the Docks,” which investigated the safety record at Detyens Shipyards Inc., a North Charleston ship-repair business where four men died on the job in three years — more than shipyards many times larger.

The investigation found that the leaders of a Navy command had long harbored safety concerns. Yet it continued to award the shipyard work worth hundreds of millions of dollars, dwarfing fines issued by safety regulators.

The National Headliner Awards were founded in 1934 by the Press Club of Atlantic City. The annual contest is one of the oldest and largest in the country that recognizes journalistic merit in the communications industry.

Newsletter Relaunch – Rising Waters: Climate Stories of the South

The Post and Courier is relaunching their climate and environment newsletter with a new name, Rising Waters: Climate Stories of the South.  This newsletter will focus on the environment and climate issues not only facing the South Carolina Lowcountry, but the entire Southeast region of the United States.

Time for Change

Over the past few years, the environment and climate change newsletter, Tipping Point, has been sending to over 2,000 subscribers, but The Post and Courier has decided it is time for a change that will better reflect their journalism and the everchanging state of the environment.

Environment and Climate Reporter Clare Fieseler joined The Post and Courier last December and expressed an interest in starting this newsletter to better connect with her readers, and make sure that they were receiving the environmental science content that they expect from The Post and Courier.

“Some of the same issues I lived through in North Carolina for many years – storms, rising seas, land development and thorny environmental politics – followed me here to the Lowcountry,” Fieseler continues, “I knew that I wanted to give readers a weekly deep dive into our climate coverage to show how it connects to news happening across the South.”

The 2020 series, Rising Waters, documents how the quickening pace of climate change and sea level rise poses an existential threat to South Carolina.  The series was named as a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in the local reporting category in 2021.

The Post and Courier’s Executive Editor, Autumn Phillips, said, “We wanted this newsletter to continue the paper’s tradition of excellence when covering climate change and the environment.  Bringing back the name ‘Rising Waters’ was a no brainer.”

This newsletter will focus on how climate change interacts with the environment, such as with wildlife, human health, food, housing, migration and more.  Fieseler hopes to share books, trends, scientific insights and more with her readers, and to settle how they can address the environmental changes that are surrounding them today.

Rapidly Growing Audience = Effective Marketing Opportunities

This newsletter is projected to target a highly engaged and specific audience, creating the perfect atmosphere for businesses to capture the attention of these subscribers.  The Post and Courier’s Director of Sales, Wayne Snow, said “The broad insights Clare will bring to our highly engaged audience supports our unending commitment to connecting advertisers that have a desire to capture them.  When it comes to topics like these, we’re excited about the opportunity to marry our customers to ‘Rising Waters’ thoughtful and responsive subscribers.”

Details regarding these sponsorship opportunities will be announced in the coming weeks.  For now, subscribe to the weekly newsletter and donate to support climate and environmental journalism.

Rising Waters: Climate Stories of the South will be sent directly to subscribers emails every Friday at 8 a.m.

The Post and Courier Launches Video Streaming App PC+


The Post and Courier has launched PC+, a new streaming app where the newspaper’s videos are curated to provide an engaging visual experience for viewers using Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV and Roku Services.

Digital Expansion

In its continued digital expansion to provide news to readers across South Carolina and beyond, The Post and Courier is seeking to meet audiences where they are.  Increasingly, that is through social media, including YouTube, and streaming platforms.

Video is an engaging way to reach digital consumers and deliver the latest news and updates, said P.J. Browning, publisher of The Post and Courier.

“We are always evolving and trying to stay up to date with the latest technology,” she said.  “This is an exciting opportunity for us to showcase the important work our photojournalists and videographers provide beyond our regular format.”

The Post and Courier, which is the South’s oldest daily newspaper and the largest based in the Palmetto State, has told stories of Charleston and South Carolina for centuries.  That includes an award-winning track record as a visual storyteller.

The company has expanded statewide with editors and reporters based in Beaufort, Bluffton, Columbia, Florence, Greenville, Hilton Head, Myrtle Beach, Rock Hill and Spartanburg.

OTT Market Takeover

Consumers continue to cut the cord and turn to over-the-top, or OTT, apps to watch videos and other digital content.

Nearly nine out of 10 U.S. households – some 86 percent – have at least one streaming video service, according to a new report from Leichtman Research Group, a New Hampshire-based firm that provides data and analysis on broadband, media and entertainment industries.  That is up from 52 percent in 2015.

Furthermore, half of U.S. households today have at least four streaming services, with Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu being the most popular.  Others include Disney+, HBO Max and YouTubeTV, reports J.D. Power.

“We have been telling the stories of Charleston and South Carolina for more than 220 years, and we are now providing those stories and coverage on more modern platforms,” said Chris Zoeller, chief opportunity and marketing officer at The Post and Courier.  “This is the natural next step as we expand our digital footprint and have already been producing high-quality video storytelling.”

Advertising Opportunities

This new video streaming app venture is good news for businesses who are looking to take advantage of The Post and Courier’s extensive advertising and sponsorship opportunities.  The PC+ app will host a variety of digital advertisements for our audiences to engage with.  For more information, subscribe to the B4B Newsletter and check for regular advertising updates.

Consumers will continue to find video and other digital content on, YouTube, the newspaper’s podcast channels and now streaming.  PC+ is available on app stores available through Amazon Fire TV, AppleTV and Roku.

The Post and Courier is launching new apps for video content on Roku, Amazon Fire TV and Apple TV platforms.
The Post and Courier is launching new apps for video content on Roku, Amazon Fire TV and Apple TV platforms.

Reva Henderson Promoted to Director of Revenue Operations

After nearly nine years with The Post and Courier, Reva Henderson was promoted to Director of Revenue Operations in October 2022.

She started on the ad operation team managing local and extended campaigns and third-party vendor relationships. From there, she became one of the original team members of King & Columbus – a full-service marketing and advertising agency run by Evening Post Industries, the parent company of The Post and Courier. She served as a campaign strategist as well as interim director, and for the past two and a half years, she was the Director of Client Services for King & Columbus.

As Director of Revenue Operations, Reva oversees the advertising department’s day-to-day tasks including campaign implementation, ad design, and production, campaign strategy, and client services and retention.

“Working alongside the new Director of Sales, Wayne Snow, in my new role I am looking forward to getting back to the core of business by finding ways to increase efficiencies and processes for all teams,” Reva said.

Born in Wilmington, North Carolina, and raised in St. Petersburg, Florida, Reva holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Relations from Florida State University.

Reva and her husband, Robert ‘Trey’ Henderson, have been married for eight years. They originally lived in Avondale in West Ashley, but have been in Park Circle for the last five years. “We love to see the area up there expand and grow with restaurants, parks, and shops!” she said.

In 2021, her son, Robert IV, was born. Today Reva stays busy working full-time and keeping up with her very active almost 2-year-old.

Last year, Reva was included on the task force to oversee the transition to NetSuite for the advertising department. The new system allows many departments, such as advertising and finance, to work in one system. The program helps with managing the process of ad order entry and with reporting ads and daily advertising functions. Her hard work during the transition earned her The Post and Courier’s Leadership Award in the fourth quarter of 2022.

Her management style combines no-nonsense problem-solving with effective communication and support. Her knowledge of the company and understanding of how tasks should be accomplished provides those in her department with the tools to properly get their jobs done. This approach creates an open work environment for her team, and a relationship built on trust and mutual respect, proving her to be a competent and reliable director.

Outside of work, Reva enjoys going to the playground with her son, taking her dog on long walks and visiting local breweries with friends and family.

Post and Courier wins Top Honors from S.C. Press Association 2022 News Contest

Congratulations to the Post and Courier team for earning top honors in the S.C. Press Association’s 2022 News Contest! For the third year in a row, Post and Courier photographer Andrew J. Whitaker carries the title of the Photojournalist of the Year. His riveting images captured the aftermath of Hurricane Ian, Recognition Day at The Citadel, and also the aftermath of floodwaters in downtown Charleston. The former photograph won Whitaker first place in the Spot News Photo category.

Latasha Grant steps over a flood fence at the entrance of Green Grocery after rain and a high tide caused flooding in downtown Charleston on Sept. 9, 2022. Andrew J. Whitaker

“To be awarded Photojournalist of the Year is an honor, to be named three consecutive years is special,” Visuals Editor Matthew Fortner said.

Andrew J. Whitaker By Grace Beahm Alford

Our chief investigative reporter in Columbia, Avery Wilks, was named South Carolina’s Journalist of the Year. As the lead reporter on the Murdaugh murders saga, Wilks also handled the coverage of South Carolinians charged in the connection with the assault on the Capitol in Washington, D.C. His investigative stories also brought to light various financial crimes across the state.

“Avery functions best in a whirlwind of activity that sometimes makes him appear to be everywhere at once — at least where South Carolina’s biggest stories are concerned,” Watchdog and Public Service Team Editor Glenn Smith said. “He is one of the most tenacious, focused and productive reporters that you will find anywhere.”

Avery Wilks, investigative reporter for The Post and Courier

Another Post and Courier top honor goes to Tony Bartelme – our three-decade veteran who is the lead reporter on the Watchdog and Public Service Team. Bartelme received the Jay Bender Award for Assertive Journalism. His relentless investigation uncovered a hushed rape allegation against a powerful sheriff in Sumter County, and a codependent relationship between a pharma company and a state regulator.

“These are just a few of the stories that demonstrate Tony’s dogged and relentless drive to expose injustices, give voice to the powerless, and hold officials accountable for their actions,” Smith said.

Among other individual accolades, Post and Courier won first place in Innovation for the South Carolina Schools Explorer – our interactive, easy-to-use online tool that measures the performance of every K-12 public school in South Carolina.

Our staff was also awarded first place in the Reporting-in-Depth category for our Safety Off series highlighting the rampant gun violence in the Lowcountry area.

See the rest of the awards Post and Courier team received from the S.C. Press Association.

SC Press Association 2022 awards

Sunshine Week

Celebrating Sunshine Week 2023

What is Sunshine Week?

Launched in 2005 by the News Leaders Association, Sunshine Week is a national initiative to educate the public about the importance of open government and the dangers of excessive and unnecessary secrecy. This year, Sunshine Week will take place on March 12-18.

Open government is also an important piece U.S. history. The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), signed by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1966, requires the full or partial disclosure of previously unreleased or uncirculated information and documents controlled by the U.S. government.


“Those are your records produced by your people, your elected officials. If there is something going on, those are documents we want to share with you. That’s what makes FOIA important.” – Schuyler Kropf, Editor, State Government & Politics, The Post and Courier


Sunshine Week celebrates the public’s right to know what U.S. government officials are doing and why. It also informs people of how to go about requesting that information through FOIA requests.

While anyone has the right to submit a FOIA request, some may be hesitant or feel discouraged to request them due to the high costs or delays put in place. It’s a reminder of why The Post and Courier launched the “Uncovered” project in February 2021. The continuing series, in partnership with close to 20 community newspapers around the state, aims to fill the void of news deserts and shine a light on corruption in South Carolina. “Uncovered” helps obtain information the public needs to know, especially in small communities where local newspapers have either disappeared or greatly lack the resources to file FOIAs themselves.

Thanks to the support of our readers in South Carolina and beyond, The Post and Courier’s investigative and watchdog team can avoid the delays, costs, and roadblocks to accessing records and shed a light on government activity — because it is your right to know.

This effort to question authority, expose wrong-doings, fight injustice, and get to the heart of the issues that matter is central to The Post and Courier Public Service and Investigative Fund’s mission. This is vital work that can’t be done without your support.


How can you help?

To commemorate Sunshine Week, The Post and Courier will raise donations for our Public Service and Investigative Fund through a two-week campaign. This will allow us to continue to bring important and impactful information to the citizens of South Carolina. Make a tax-deductible donation on behalf of our education, climate, and investigative reporting before midnight on the final day of Sunshine Week (Saturday, March 18th).

With your valuable donation, we’re able to submit as many FOIA requests as it takes to ensure South Carolinians are not in the dark.

Wayne Snow Named Director of Sales

Wayne Snow has a passion for success, but it’s his track record that’s proof of his ability to lead, create solutions, and grow just about anything he touches. His resume reads like a “Who’s Who” of media professionals. Wayne was recruited out of college (Florida State University) by Knight Ridder’s Miami Herald/El Nuevo Herald into their Advertising Management Training Program, and he quickly made his way up the advertising and consulting ladder. He has since worked in various impressive senior management positions at Florida Times-Union, St. Augustine Record, St. Peterburg Times, Louisville Kentucky Courier-Journal, and the Lexington Herald Leader. He even returned to the Miami Herald, as Director of Classified Advertising, during his second stint with Knight Ridder.

Wayne’s journey also encompassed extensive digital advertising experience, including serving as General Manager for, Vice President of Sales for Digital First Media Company, where he was responsible for $1 billion in revenue across 75 markets, and Corporate Vice President of Sales for Oklahoman Media Company.

In 2019, he founded Snow Business Solutions and turned his attention to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI), working as a trainer, facilitator, and strategist for clients ranging from non-profits to the criminal justice system. When asked if he would share one over-arching piece of advice for advancing DEI, Wayne said, “For everyone to have open, respectful, non-judgmental conversations about cultural differences.”

Wayne is now calling Summerville, S.C. home, as the new Director of Sales for The Post and Courier. He hit the ground running in January, and has so inspired the staff with his collaborative enthusiasm that one of his colleagues coined the term “Waynespiration.” His friendly demeanor and authentic desire to build successful relationships are apparent from the moment you make eye contact.

As a family man deeply rooted in his faith, a certain glow washes over Wayne when he talks about his wife of 37 years, Judy, along with their three daughters,  granddaughter, and grandson. Likewise, he speaks reverently about his mother who instilled strong values at an early age and founded a church, and his brother who is the Bishop of that church.

Not surprisingly, Wayne’s first order of business at The Post and Courier is to see 100 customers in 60 days, and then follow up with recommendations from our full suite of media solutions. “I’m excited to meet customers and gain an understanding of what their goals are and what success looks like for them,” he said.

If you don’t meet Wayne in person over the next 60 days (chances are you will), you might want to keep your eye out for him on the fairway. An avid golfer, Wayne has a handicap of 10.

The Post and Courier Celebrates its 220th Anniversary

220 Years of Commitment to the Community

Thanks to the support of countless subscribers and the partnership of local and national businesses over the years, The Post and Courier celebrated its 220th anniversary on Tuesday, January 10, 2023. 

As the South’s oldest daily newspaper, first as The (Charleston) Courier and later The News and Courier, the publication has been a staple of the community here in the Charleston area since 1803. Over the years, the paper’s coverage has included stories about business, politics, food, entertainment and local interests. It also shed light on critical public service and investigative topics, with projects including the 2015 Pulitzer Prize-winning “Till Death Do Us Part”, the Education Lab, and The Greenland Connection. Beginning in 2021, it brought to print the Uncovered series which works in partnership with 18 community newspapers in SC to reveal corruption and misdeeds among public officials.

However, this longstanding commitment to impactful journalism is not the only thing to be celebrated this year. As The Post and Courier enters this 220th year, the paper’s history and success are shared with many of the companies who also call South Carolina home. 

“Readers have relied on The Post and Courier for editorial and advertising content for years,” says President and Publisher PJ Browning. “Because of our commitment to quality journalism and our deep roots in the community, advertising in the newspaper and on our website has become a trusted and reliable investment. Advertising is a valuable piece of the content we provide and helps keep people informed of new businesses in the area, sales, and events.”

The Post and Courier has established itself as a lasting part of people’s daily lives both in the tri-county area and throughout the state. This makes the paper a valuable resource for businesses to reach potential and returning customers.

Chief Opportunity & Marketing Officer, Chris Zoeller, shares that “maintaining a balance of great, meaningful journalism alongside long-term partnerships with advertisers makes The Post and Courier an important source of value for readers and businesses alike.”

It’s a special thing to see advertisers in previous editions of The News and Courier still within the pages of The Post and Courier. Zoeller continues, “We want to take this time to not only celebrate our anniversary but also what it means for our partners.” 

What does it mean for a newspaper to last well over 200 years? This longevity represents the intertwined success of the paper and its advertisers because of the dedication to and loyalty from the public.

While the achievement of the 220-year milestone is one to be proud of, it would not have been possible without the continuing relationships between subscribers and advertising partners. For that, there is a lot of gratitude to go around – but, more importantly, an even stronger conviction of the commitment and public service to South Carolina. 

This mission will take The Post and Courier well into the next 200+ years.


Croghan’s Valentine’s Day ad in The News and Courier, Thursday, February 13, 1958


Croghan’s Mother’s Day ad in The News and Courier, Friday, May 11, 1951


Southeastern Galleries ad in The News and Courier, Friday, August 6, 1976