As Christal Gaines-Emory finishes up her second year at Long Beach State, she has high hopes to create better connections with the Beach community and build positive structures in the Daily Forty-Niner newsroom that will last for years.
Before starting her journalism career at the Beach in August 2021, Gaines-Emory was at her hometown’s newspaper, Fallbrook & Bonsall Village News holding the positions of social media manager, editorial assistant, and staff writer during her time there.
“I finished up my senior year of high school working [at Village News]. And at the same time I was also working three other jobs,” said Gaines-Emory. “Working three jobs at once really helped to teach me about time management, organization and self motivation. I was busy all of the time, but I felt really grateful for the opportunity to learn more about myself.”
In fall 2021, Gaines-Emory joined the Daily Forty-Niner editorial team as the Arts and Life Editor and was always reliable, especially with quick deadlines. During her time as the Arts and Life Editor, she improved the section by giving a spotlight to local artists and providing eye-catching visuals.
“I’ve always loved arts,” said Gaines-Emory. “I’ve always gravitated towards arts. Just because I’ve always liked learning about all the artist and I liked learning about the culture and the community.”
Gaines-Emory applied to be Editor in Chief because she felt her personality embodies what it takes to be a good leader. She can take criticism, is straightforward, on top of deadlines, confident and has been a team leader in other groups.
Lenila Batali, the Executive Director at D’vine Path and Gaines-Emory pervious boss, stands by her passion and work ethic.
“Christal is probably the hardest working, most dedicated person I have ever met,” said Batali. “Not only is her work ethic outstanding, she is also a genuine person with a huge heart.”
As the newly hired Editor in Chief, Gaines-Emory hopes to create a team that is diverse and understands when it’s okay to be friends with each other and when it’s time to work. She also wants to make the 49er more accessible to the community.
“I feel a lot of people on campus have this idea of who the Daily Forty-Niner is and what our organization represents,” she said. “I’m hoping to stray away from that a little bit because there’s been a lot of judgment of that in the past.”
Outside of being a fantastic journalist, Gaines-Emory loves to bake or give people food she says that’s her “love language.” She also loves just being at the beach (her favorite beach around LB is Bolsa Chica) and hanging out with her cats or friends. She loves ramen and boba and is a “plant nerd” who also loves floral designing.
One year from now, Gaines-Emory hopes to apply to some bigger internships and be proud of the work she has done at the 49er.
“We are a publication doing our best and trying to inform the people around us because we are journalists and that is what we do and like everyone we make mistakes sometimes.,” Gaines-Emory said. “Overall I want people to see that we are people too.”