The Detroit Free Press reporting team covering the 2023 United Auto Workers strike has decades of combined reporting experience in auto, finance, business and more .
Here are the top five journalists covering the UAW strike. Click on their names in the descriptions to learn more about their work.
Jamie L. LaReau
Jamie L. LaReau has been a journalist for 32 years. She began her career in newspapers and magazines, then moved to television and radio, eventually returning to print media. She is an award-winning journalist who joined the Detroit Free Press in June 2018 as a business editor covering General Motors. Previously, she spent 13 years writing for Automotive News. She has a total of 19 years of experience in the automotive industry with several manufacturers and in the context of the economic, political and environmental impact of the industry on the country.
Before covering the auto industry, Jamie covered Wall Street in New York for Money Media and Reuters and in Chicago for the Bridge News wire service. Originally from Detroit, Jamie loves running, cooking and spending time with his dogs. Jamie graduated Magna Cum Laude from Michigan State University in 1991 with a BA in Communications.
Phoebe Wall Howard
Phoebe Wall Howard has experience in national magazines, newspapers, radio and television, with a focus on business, politics, government regulation, consumer behavior and labor affairs. In 2017, she returned to Detroit to cover Ford Motor Co. on the Detroit Free Press auto team. His award-winning work has changed public policy and exposed corporate wrongdoing.
His family history in Detroit dates back to the 1860s. His great-grandfather, grandfather and father operated the TJ Wall & Sons paint shop in Corktown. His other grandfather was a tram conductor. And her great-uncle, Malcolm Bingay, was editorial director and columnist at the Free Press until 1953. Phoebe earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri. She is married to a master electrician who has the patience of a saint. When she’s not writing, Phoebe can be found on a lake sailing or paddleboarding, snorkeling in the ocean, or trying to improve her running time .
Eric D. Lawrence
Eric D. Lawrence covers Stellantis, parent company of Jeep and Chrysler, as a member of the Detroit Free Press auto team. In addition to general auto news, the ongoing UAW strike, and related labor issues covered by the team, Eric writes on topics like mass transit challenges and growing pedestrian numbers You are. Eric began his work at Free Press in 2008 and has held a variety of positions, covering everything from breaking news and local information to county government and transportation.
Eric has worked as a journalist in many states since graduating from West Virginia University, where he served as editor of the Daily Athenaeum. Eric is married to a fellow journalist and they are parents to a wonderful 11-year-old son. Eric enjoys playing his guitar and running in his free time. He thinks he might do a full marathon one of these days.
Susan Tompo, personal finance columnist for the Detroit Free Press and the USA Today Network, writes about changes in financial conditions facing households, including those associated with the 2023 UAW strike against the Detroit Three. She has written extensively on the economy, taxes, the student loan crisis, the credit crisis and the Great Recession, and the bankruptcy of the city of Detroit. She also tracked down scams and hidden fees.
A journalism graduate of Michigan State University, her first job was in Louisville, Kentucky, in the labor field. As a member of a Free Press team, Susan received an honorable mention for the 2008 Gerald Loeb Awards for her news coverage and was later a Loeb Finalist in 2014 for her news coverage. Susan received the 2015 Gerald Loeb Award for her personal financial coverage of the Detroit bankruptcy and its impact on retirees. Susan lives in Pleasant Ridge with her husband. Their son is now a CPA. They lost their beloved corgi Phoenix in 2022, but new corgi puppy Nigel Drake happily shows up for work.
Auto critic and Free Press columnist Marc Phélan has covered the automotive industry since the 1980s. Phelan wrote for various newspapers, magazines and online sites before joining the Free Press in 2002. He has covered the automotive industry around the world, including living in Europe and working in Asia, in Australia, South America and Africa.
Phelan has contributed to numerous publications, including the New York Times, Road & Track, and Ward’s Auto. He is a regular guest on television and radio to discuss the trends shaping the automotive industry. He owns a dog and travels a lot for pleasure, often to music festivals. A recipient of numerous awards, Phelan is the past president of the Automotive Press Association and the North American Car and Truck of the Year awards. Phelan was born in Thomasville, Georgia to Irish parents.