WAUSAU — Reports from the police, the news, bystanders or even our own observations don’t always match up. How do we know what is the truth? How can we stay informed about what’s happening in our neighborhood?

Wausau Pilot and Review is proud to partner with the Wisconsin Institute for Public Policy and Service, local law enforcement professionals, community leaders, and local media outlets for Beyond the Headlines, a series of panel discussions on building public trust.

The first discussion, “Beyond the Headlines – Building Trust: Law Enforcement, the Media, and You,” happens at 7 p.m. today at Northcentral Technical College Auditorium (Health Sciences Center), 1000 West Campus Drive, in Wausau.

This free kickoff event brings the national discussion of law enforcement and media coverage home to Wausau.


  • Sue Riseling, executive director of the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators and former UW-Madison police chief
  • Mike Leary, editor of the San Antonio Express–News, Pulitzer Prize winner for coverage of crime in schools for the Philadelphia Inquirer
  • Ben Bliven, chief of police, Wausau Police Department
  • Scott Parks, Marathon County sheriff
  • Sarah Gray, news director of WSAW Channel 7
  • Glen Moberg, distinguished broadcast specialist, Wisconsin Public Radio

Serving as moderator is Professor Kathleen Culver, UW-Madison director of the Center for Journalism Ethics.

Space is limited. To register, click here.

More extended community discussions with local law enforcement, media and community members will follow in June, September, October and November – in Wausau, Eau Claire, Milwaukee and Superior – and will discuss:

  • What is news
  • Credibility of law enforcement and media
  • Impact of race on media coverage and policing
  • Role of journalism in a democracy
  • How to hold government accountable

To register for this free event, learn more about the full slate of speakers, sponsors and additional events around the state, go to beyondtheheadlineswisconsin.org/wausau/kickoff.

“All public life depends upon the public having sources of news that we can turn to for information that we trust,” said Dena Wortzel, executive director of the Wisconsin Humanities Council. “In Wisconsin today, newspapers are struggling financially. People are getting less local news, and to make matters worse, many people fear that the news that they do receive – whether from social media or traditional media sources – may not be trustworthy. We launched Beyond the Headlines so that the public can meet members of the media face-to-face, and talk with journalists who work every day to bring information to the public on issues that affect our lives right here in Wisconsin.”

Beyond the Headlines is a project of the Wisconsin Humanities Council, in partnership with Wisconsin Institute for Public Policy and Service, and other local media, law enforcement and citizen representatives in Wausau. It is funded in part by a grant from the Mellon Foundation, in partnership with the Pulitzer Prizes.

Wausau Pilot and Review Publisher Shereen Siewert will serve as a panelist in an event planned for September.