Santiago is an 18-time Emmy Award watcher and a reporter covering the Lynchburg area.
He grew up in Haymarket, VA and graduated from Rutgers University with a degree in Journalism & Media Studies. He began his career as a freelance reporter in D.C. for the Washington Blade. In D.C., Santiago had two roommates and attended panel discussions for the free food. He then went on to earn his Master’s degree in Journalism from Columbia University.
At Columbia, Santiago focused on international reporting under Howard French. Some stories Santiago reported on included the Iran nuclear agreement and the new Argentinean President’s mission to end currency controls. He was also part of a reporting team covering the refugee crisis in Italy and traveled to Rome and Turin to cover stories of migrants. And yes, he did make lame “When in Rome” jokes the entire time, even in Turin. His Master’s thesis was a long-form story on the unique challenges gay and lesbian asylum seekers face when navigating the U.S. asylum system.
He was most recently a reporter in Garden City, Kansas, where he covered agriculture, health care, and immigration news. His brother has still not stopped making lame “You’re not in Kansas anymore” jokes.
There, he extensively covered the local Somali community, including the long-term impact of a white nationalist bomb plot, which targeted the mosque and apartment complex of more than 100 Somali refugees. His reporting also focused on how national health policy impacts rural communities and the effects that both climate and international trade agreements have on the agriculture industry.
Santiago is an At-Large Board Member of NLGJA: The Association of LGBTQ Journalists and a member of NAHJ, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists.
Santiago is single and childless. In his spare time, he watches Netflix and avoids the gym.