Freelance journalist/CASW board member/KSJ alumni (Costa Rica)
Debbie Ponchner is a bilingual science journalist with over 15 year of experience in print and digital media, and newsroom management. She is based in her home country Costa Rica where she works as a freelancer. She started out as a science reporter for La Nación, the newspaper of record for this Central American country. In 2005 she founded and served as editor of the first daily science and health section of La Nación. Later on, she was the newspaper's managing editor and wrote its weekly science column. She left La Nación in 2014, and moved to New York to create and lead the Spanish Language website of Scientific American, a project that ran until April of 2017. She has won several journalism awards, including Costa Rica's National Journalism Prize, the Jorge Vargas-Gené Award, in 2002 and 2005 as well as the National Scientific Journalism Prize, given by the National Council for Science and Technology of Costa Rica, in 2002, 2005 and 2008. She studied mass communication at the University of Costa Rica, specializing in science and medical communication at Pompeu Fabra University in Barcelona, Spain. In 2003–04 she spent the academic year as a Knight Science Journalism Fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. She serves as a board member of CASW.