Jodie Valade

Editor, Digital News and Engagement

Jodie Valade is a Digital News and Engagement Editor for WFAE. Since moving to Charlotte in 2015, she has worked as a digital content producer for and a freelance writer for publications ranging from Charlotte magazine to The Washington Post and New York Times. Before that, Jodie was an award-winning sports features and enterprise reporter at The Plain Dealer in Cleveland, Ohio. She also worked at The Dallas Morning News covering the Dallas Mavericks -- where she became Mark Cuban's lifelong email pen pal -- and at The Kansas City Star.

She has a Bachelor of Science in Journalism from Northwestern University and a Master of Education from John Carroll University. She is originally from Rochester Hills, Michigan.

Ways to Connect


The North Carolina Restaurant and Lodging Association on Tuesday evening released a document providing "interim guidance" from the NC Department of Health and Human Services that indicates the state will begin Phase 2 of its reopening Friday -- and allow dine-in service for 50% of the building capacity.

Courtesy Alvin C. Jacobs Jr.

Two months ago, Alvin C. Jacobs Jr. was still recovering from a devastating car accident in November that left the Charlotte photographer with lasting physical injuries and plenty of bills.

South Carolina will allow dine-in service at restaurants beginning Monday, limiting the number of people to 50% of the building capacity and still enforcing social distancing measures that require tables to be spaced 6-8 feet apart.

South Carolina will begin a four-part coronavirus testing program that focuses on identifying how much of the state’s population has been infected by the virus, starting with testing all residents and staff members of nursing homes in the state.

Henry McMaster
South Carolina ETV

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster announced on Friday that he will lift the state “work-or-home” order and will allow outdoor dining at restaurants that practice social distancing, effective Monday.

Erin Keever / WFAE

Mecklenburg County, the city of Charlotte and six county towns agreed Tuesday to transition from the county stay-at-home order to the statewide order issued by Gov. Roy Cooper that now extends to May 8.

The slightly more lenient North Carolina order deems more businesses as "essential."


Sharon Gaber, the current president of the University of Toledo in Ohio, has been named UNC Charlotte’s newest chancellor.

Gaber’s appointment was approved Tuesday in a Board of Governors meeting. She will begin July 1 with a salary of $525,000.

Blumenthal Performing Arts
Joe O'Connor / WFAE

Whenever we’re allowed to – and want to – return to the theater in Charlotte to see performances at any of the Blumenthal Performing Arts’ venues, it might look very different from what we’re accustomed to. If it’s not already abundantly evident, the coronavirus pandemic has altered everything in life.

Steve Harrison / WFAE

Former election campaign consultant Leslie McCrae Dowless, who was at the center of a voter fraud scandal in the 9th Congressional District in 2018, has been indicted on charges of social security fraud, the U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina announced Tuesday.


Courtesy Jersey Roche

Among the things that Sarah “Jersey” Roche has learned in the past few weeks are:

  • Her bedroom has the best acoustics at her house, probably because of all the bedding and pillows;
  • She misses her friends at Opera Carolina desperately and can’t wait until they are able to perform together again;
  • Music really does have the power to heal.

hospital beds

Atrium and Novant health systems now say that a field hospital is not needed in Charlotte, as social distancing measures in Mecklenburg County have helped slow a projected surge of coronavirus patients.

Charlotte Museum of History

Spring is typically the busiest time of year for the Charlotte Museum of History. That’s when school field trips come filing through the museum and grounds, as students throughout the area get their first glimpse of Mecklenburg County’s oldest home, the 1774 Hezekiah Alexander Homesite.

Roy Cooper

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper on Thursday issued an executive order further restricting the number of people in retail and grocery stores and preventing group gatherings in nursing homes in an effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus.

A third part of the order aims to make filing for unemployment easier.

police tape

CMPD is investigating two homicides in Charlotte in the past 12 hours. They are the 30th and 31st homicides of the year.

Google Maps

About 60 homes were damaged from an explosion at a hydrogen fuel plant near Hickory on Tuesday, Catawba County officials said.

@britdrozda / Instagram

Last month, Brit Drozda had to cancel her show scheduled for Amos’ Southend. The singer-songwriter was sick – not COVID-19, don’t worry – and she says it was the first time she’s ever had to back out of a show for health reasons.

She rescheduled for the end of March. But, as you undoubtedly know, the world sort of fell apart before that show could happen. 

So Drozda had an idea.

@heyitscalla / Twitter

Police issued a dozen citations and made eight arrests outside a women’s clinic in southeast Charlotte Saturday after they say protesters were violating North Carolina's statewide order banning mass gatherings amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Roy Cooper

Gov. Roy Cooper urged North Carolina residents to heed his stay-at-home order during the coming first weekend it is in effect, warning that “these interventions we put in place can be tightened even more if necessary” because a surge of coronavirus cases is coming, according to predictive modeling.

UNC Charlotte

Atrium and Novant Health systems are working with Mecklenburg County and the city of Charlotte to set up a field hospital for coronavirus patients in “a matter of weeks,” Atrium CEO Gene Woods said in a teleconference board meeting Thursday. 

South Carolina/ETV

South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster on Tuesday issued his strictest orders for the state yet amid the coronavirus outbreak, declaring that all nonessential businesses must close down.