The San Francisco Chronicle recruits three more award-winning photojournalists

We are thrilled to announce three new additions to The Chronicle: Salgu Wissmath, Alvin AH Jornada and Ash Adams. Each brings a diverse perspective and experience to the visuals team and has a proven track record as photojournalists committed to documenting their communities and important social issues.

Hearst Fellow Salgu Wissmath

Courtesy of Marissa Leshnov

Salgu Wissmath, a non-binary Korean American photographer, joins the newsroom as part of the Hearst Journalism Fellowship on August 15. Wissmath will spend the Fellowship’s first year at The Chronicle, then join the San Antonio Express-News photography team from 2023-2024.

Prior to joining The Chronicle, Wissmath was a freelance photographer in Sacramento. Their work has appeared in The Chronicle, The New York Times, CalMatters, NPR, The Wall Street Journal and High Country News, among others. Their photo and video essays explore the intersections of mental health, queer identity and faith using a documentary approach.

Wissmath studied linguistics at UC Berkeley and earned a master’s degree in photojournalism at Ohio University. They are 2022 Gwen Ifill Fellows, 2021 California Arts Council Emerging Artist Fellow, and 2017 Women Photograph Mentee, as well as an alumnus of the National Lesbian Gay Journalists Association’s Chips Quinn Scholar, Eddie Adams Workshop XXXI, and Connect Student Journalism Project program. are active in several photojournalism organizations, serving as Director of Communications for Diversify Photo and a member of the Asian American Journalists Association, Women Photographer, Native Agency and Authority Collective.

“I am honored to join a photography department that has distinguished itself as one of the most diverse photography staffs in the country,” said Wissmath. “I’m really looking forward to learning from some great mentors, getting to know the Bay Area, and telling in-depth stories about my home state of California.”

San Francisco Chronicle Photo Editor Alvin Jornada

San Francisco Chronicle Photo Editor Alvin Jornada

Russell Yip / Special for The Chronicle

Alvin AH Jornada has worked with the photo bureau since 2011 as a collaborating photographer and periodically as a contract photo editor. In June, he officially assumed the role of Lead Sports and Night Photo Editor. Before officially joining The Chronicle full-time, he was a photojournalist at The Press Democrat newspaper. He was part of the team that received the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for News Reporting for its coverage of the Tubbs and Nuns fires that devastated large areas of Santa Rosa and Sonoma County. His photographs have also been recognized by California News Publishers and National Press Photographers.

“During my past experiences working with The Chronicle, I have frequently observed staff members, from photographers to editors, go to great lengths to ensure that the pieces of history they have documented and published were as accurate as possible,” Jornada said. “I am very honored to officially be part of this team.”

Ash Adams with his children, Ellis and Elliott Adams, in Aspen, Colorado.

Ash Adams with his children, Ellis and Elliott Adams, in Aspen, Colorado.

Courtesy of Jackie Molloy

Ash Adams joins us as a part-time photo editor. She has worked as a photojournalist and documentary photographer for over a decade. Adams’ work has been featured in The New York Times, New York Times Magazine, National Geographic, The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, ESPN, Mother Jones, Rolling Stone, TIME and other national publications and international. She is the recipient of a grant from the National Geographic Society. In 2019, Adams received one of six Sony Alpha Female Creator-in-Residence Awards. And in 2020, Adams co-founded a program to mentor photographers who identify as BIPOC, LGBTQIA, and women.

“I am thrilled to join the San Francisco Chronicle this year as a photo editor to both contribute and learn from the wealth of newsroom experience,” says Adams. “I have followed San Francisco’s exemplary photo work for years and am happy to be part of such a dedicated team.”

The Chronicle’s photo team is a nationally recognized industry head of staff diversity, world-class photojournalism and in-depth documentary photography. Staff photographer Gabrielle Lurie is a Pulitzer Prize finalist and twice named Local Photographer of the Year by Pictures of the Year International. The California News Publishers Association awarded the team top honors for its 2020 portfolio, and the photo bureau was twice named photo editing team of the year by the National Press Photographers Best of Photojournalism competition.

About the San Francisco Chronicle
The San Francisco Chronicle (sfchronicle.com) is Northern California’s largest newspaper and the second largest on the West Coast. Acquired by Hearst Corporation in 2000, The San Francisco Chronicle was founded in 1865 by Charles and Michael de Young and received six Pulitzer Prizes for journalistic excellence. Follow us on Twitter at @SFChronicle.