Tegna names hosts for national Verify franchise reports

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Tegna’s Verify brand, which helps the public distinguish between true and false information, has named the hosts for its national version.

Reporting to Lindsay Claiborn, deputy editor, video, Gabe Cohen, Ariane Datil and Brandon Lewis, will serve as hosts, and will write stories and produce content across multiple platforms.

Earlier this year, Tegna debuted its national Verify brand, building on the substantial growth of Verify content on its local media properties. The Verify team, with help from questions submitted by our audience, tracks the spread of stories or claims that need clarification or correction.

Sources are always provided, allowing our audience to see exactly how the Verify team determines the veracity of any claims. In addition to its daily broadcast presence and newly launched website, consumers can now text Verify to submit a story they want verified and sign up for daily “Fast Facts” sent straight to their mobile devices.

“Gabe, Ariane and Brandon along with our top-notch editorial team will ensure we are providing our audience with trustworthy and transparent information to help stop the spread of misinformation and disinformation,” said Jonathan Forsythe, Verify managing editor in a statement.

Cohen is an Emmy and Murrow award-winning journalist who joined Verify in 2020, telling insightful stories that impact viewers across the country and in the D.C. metro area.

Before joining Tegna, Cohen spent more than four years at KOMO News in Seattle, where he worked as a general assignment reporter and weekend anchor. Prior to that, he worked as a reporter at KHQ News in Spokane. Cohen grew up in New York and has a degree from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.

Ariane Datil is also the lead host for Verify’s popular weekly Snapchat Discover show.

Prior to joining the Verify team, Datil worked at WUSA9 where she helped launch #TheQandA, covered social justice protests, the Capitol insurrection, and a series on earthquakes in Puerto Rico, which earned her Regional Edward R. Murrow and Emmy Awards. She is a graduate of Wake Forest University and studied International Fashion Merchandising at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York. Datil is based in Washington, D.C.

Before joining Verify,  Lewis worked at KFMB in San Diego where he won two Emmy Awards for his coverage of immigration and public safety along the U.S.-Mexico border. Lewis has received multiple Emmy Awards for his reporting on some of Southern California’s biggest stories.

During his career, he has covered the Boston Marathon bombings, the death of Kobe Bryant, numerous California wildfires and corruption in New York state politics. Lewis previously reported in San Diego, Albany, N.Y., South Bend, Ind. and Columbia, Mo. He is known for his versatility and compelling, data-driven storytelling.

From January through May 2021, Verify content on Tegna’s local station sites and www.verifythis.com delivered 27.2 million total visitors and 6.7 million total video plays, a 155% and 44% increase, respectively, over the same period in 2020 according to Google Analytics.

Verify weekly Snapchat Discover show more than 171,000 subscribers and 2.2 million unique visitors year-to-date.