Journalism student named Newman Civic Fellow

Lelah Byron, a sophomore journalism major in the Diederich College of Communication, was one of 290 students named a Newman Civic Fellow by the Boston-based nonprofit group Campus Compact.

In her roles as a journalist and community volunteer, Byron pursues activism, catalyzing public discussion and contributing to structural change. In her role as an investigative reporter for student paper the Marquette Tribune, she has covered such topics as health care access in the transgender community, human trafficking and financial struggles of low-income students. In 2019, she was named Reporter of the Year from the Marquette Wire, the university’s student media organization. She also serves as a program assistant in the Center for Community Service, supporting community engaged campus programming and volunteerism.

“Lelah represents our institutional commitment to social justice and community engagement with her passionate pursuit of justice and truth,” nominator President Michael R. Lovell said. “Her particular gifts and passions lead her to using journalism as her form of activism. She sees people, their stories and deep issues of justice as woven together. As a journalist she is telling these stories to encourage public discussion and contribute to structural change. She sees the tremendous potential of critical analysis and storytelling to impact the world.”

The Newman Civic Fellowship is a one-year experience emphasizing personal, professional and civic growth for students who have demonstrated a capacity for leadership and an investment in solving public problems. Through the fellowship, Campus Compact provides a variety of learning and networking opportunities, including a national conference of Newman Civic Fellows in partnership with the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate.

The Newman Civic Fellowship is supported by the KPMG Foundation and Newman’s Own Foundation. Learn more at