New reporter joins Daily News staff

Published 8:07 pm Friday, March 2, 2018

The Washington Daily News welcomes Matt Debnam as the paper’s newest reporter.

Debnam comes to Washington from Crossnore, North Carolina, where he wrote for the Avery Journal-Times.

Hiring on with the Daily News is a logical next step in his career, he said.

“The pace of a daily newspaper seemed to be a good step forward towards eventually becoming an editor of a newspaper one day,” Debnam said.

At the Avery Journal-Times, Debnam covered local government, education, crime, as well as spearheaded an arts and entertainment page for the weekly newspaper. He said he covered “anything and everything happening in that little county.”

Originally from Louisburg, Debnam is an Appalachian State graduate, and earned a bachelor’s degree in history with a concentration in journalism. He decided to pursue journalism.

“I first discovered journalism in high school, working for the school newspaper and yearbook, and I was inspired by a teacher there. After a long, winding road through college, I found this to be a career that I could enjoy and really sink my teeth into,” Debnam said.

Though Debnam has made the transition from mountains to the coastal plain, he’s no stranger to the area.

“I actually grew up attending summer camp on the Neuse River. I worked there for a number of years in college, so I’m used to the coastal way of living. I’m really excited to be back down in this area,” he said.

As one of his hobbies is sailing, he said he’ll be spending plenty of time on the water once the weather warms up.