INFLUENCER: Antonia Ayres-Brown

The Newport Bureau Reporter for The Public’s Radio talks about the importance of telling local stories, browsing books, and beachside runs

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Have you always lived in Rhode Island?  If not, what brought you here?

I grew up in Connecticut, so not too far away. I didn’t move to Rhode Island until the summer of 2020, when I joined The Public’s Radio. Before that, I had been living in Illinois and reporting for a newspaper there.

What are your favorite Rhody things to do?

I really enjoy spending time by the water and walking around Newport’s outdoor spaces. I also love picking up fresh seafood from the local farmers market on the weekends.

What led you to pursue a career in journalism/broadcasting?

I’ve always enjoyed talking with people and listening to their stories. I love radio specifically because our listeners can hear people’s voices exactly as I heard them. Audio is a powerful medium because you can convey so much through the sounds and small details of a story.

What do you like best about covering the Newport beat?

It means a lot to me to be based in Newport and be a part of this community that I cover. Newport is home to so many people who are doing inspiring work to make Aquidneck Island a more equitable, healthy, and vibrant place to live, especially for year-round residents. As a reporter, I’m grateful to be able to assist in telling these important stories that help people stay connected and engaged.

Where are your go-to spots around Aquidneck Island?

I love picking up food at Leo’s Market and Restaurant on Broadway and CurryLand on Connell Highway! I’ll also often swing by Harvest Market on Carroll Avenue for breakfast sandwiches, and for fun, I like to browse bookstores in the area, like the newly opened Charter Books on Broadway and Island Books in Middletown.

When you’re not writing/reporting, what are your interests?

During my free time, I play the guitar and write music. I also love running — especially now that my route passes by the beach!

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