Influencer: Meet The Public’s Radio’s Newport Bureau Reporter Cheryl Hatch

Whether Afghanistan or Aquidneck Island, The Public’s Radio’s Newport Bureau reporter loves telling stories


You’ve enjoyed a career as an international journalist. How does that differ (or not) from telling local stories?

In Africa, the Middle East, or on Aquidneck Island, I have the same principles and practices that guide my approach to reporting and telling local stories. I am over the moon to be the Newport Bureau Reporter for The Public’s Radio. I have joined a group of big-hearted, talented, dedicated staff and journalists. We’re on a mission. I’m happy and honored to be a part of it.


Have you always lived in Rhode Island?

I did not grow up here but both sides of my family go back generations on this island. My mother and father grew up about one and a half miles from each other and went to URI. My dad was a career Army officer, so we moved 20-plus times before I graduated high school; we often came home for Christmas and summer vacations. My father taught me to body surf at Sachuest Beach and to drive in the parking lot! I moved here four and a half years ago with the intention to make this my home.


What are your favorite small businesses to eat, shop, and visit across the East Bay?

I love to break bread with people, so this is a question after my own heart. In Newport: Bar ‘Cino, the Black Pearl, and Hummingbird Cafe (the jerk chicken with plantains is my fave). Over in Middletown: Anthony’s for seafood, Bangkok City, Chelsea’s, and Island Books; Le Bec Sucré and Le Bec Salé are my new favorite additions. The Boathouse in Tiverton is a perennial favorite, Beehive Cafe in Bristol, and if I leave the island, I like BEECH in Jamestown for lunch and dinner.


When you’re not working on a story, where can we find you?

By, in, or on the ocean. Body surfing at Second Beach. Walking Sachuest Point. Swimming with friends in Potter Cove in Jamestown. For years, even before I lived here, I’ve joined my friend Elizabeth Gibbs on her monthly beach clean-up at Sachuest Point for Clean Ocean Access. Also find me at the post office. I still write letters and postcards and send them to my friends and family all over the world. Or at home: I am gently caring for the house where my mom grew up. And I love to bake, so when I’m not in the yard working or reading a book, I’d be in the kitchen baking pies and cookies. Read Hatch’s article about the closing of Gary’s Handy Lunch on page 14.


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