Duluth News Tribune welcomes 2 journalists to staff

Wyatt Buckner is a digital producer and Brielle Bredsten is a business reporter.

headshots of two journalists
Wyatt Buckner, left, and Brielle Bredsten
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DULUTH — Two new journalists started at the News Tribune this week. Brielle Bredsten is the new business reporter and Wyatt Buckner is a new digital producer.

Digital producer Wyatt Buckner has lived in Duluth since he was 3 years old and has worked as a photojournalist for about five years. He most recently was the chief photojournalist at KBJR 6 in Duluth and also worked as a production assistant at WDIO.

Buckner attended the College of St. Scholastica, where he earned a degree in communication and film studies with a minor in philosophy in 2018. He graduated from Harbor City International School in Duluth.

During his time at KBJR, Buckner covered several major and memorable events, including the coronavirus pandemic, the 2020 election, the Greenwood Fire in 2021 and the recent flooding in St. Louis County. One of his favorite events to cover is the John Beargrease Sled Dog Marathon.

“That’s just an example of something I didn’t really know about before and I got hooked into with photojournalism,” he said. "It was during the 2019 polar vortex, but I still got hooked and I’ve covered the Beargrease every year since then.”


At the News Tribune, Buckner will work with digital producer Dan Williamson to create video news stories and social media content. He is also excited to learn more about podcasting with the production of the " Duluth News Tribune Minute" podcast .

“I’ve enjoyed all my manager responsibilities and I’m proud of the work I’ve done, but it’s nice to kind of step back and focus more on the storytelling aspect,” Buckner said. "I’m excited to keep making news video content. It’s the same region I was covering before, but just a different avenue, and DNT puts out great content."

Buckner and his wife, Adrianna, own a side videography business, Infinite Film Production, where they do private event and drone videography. The couple also wrote, filmed and produced a movie in 2019. The film, "Blind Truth," was created with local talent and crews, and is available on Amazon Prime.

The Buckners live in Proctor with their two dogs: a Samoyed named Legolas and a Shih Tzu named Gimli. In his free time, he enjoys watching movies and going for hikes on the area's trails.

Buckner replaces digital producer Samantha Erkkila, who left the News Tribune in March for a position at the Entrepreneur Fund.

Business reporter Brielle Bredsten has about a decade of journalism experience, most recently working as a freelance writer. She previously was the editor of the Aitkin Independent Age and was executive director of the Cuyuna Lakes Chamber of Commerce from 2019-2021. She also worked as a reporter for the Isanti County News, Mille Lacs County Times, Mille Lacs Messenger and the Metropolitan State University student newspaper, the Metropolitan.

Bredsten is from St. Francis, Minnesota, and has lived in the Twin Cities metro and Aitkin. She has a degree in professional writing and technical communication from Metropolitan State University, with minors in advertising and creative writing.

"I feel like my strength is storytelling and getting information out there. That was what I utilized to help me with my job at the chamber,” Bredsten said. "I think that getting back into journalism was definitely because writing was my strength, and business reporting was also my interest because of my background and knowledge on how communities work and what contributes. I’m getting back into journalism, and am able to apply that knowledge that I’ve gained through my different community involvement.”


She looks forward to learning more about Duluth and building connections with area business leaders.

“I think that there’s a lot going on in Duluth and there’s so much to learn, so I’m just open to taking it all in like a sponge,” she said.

Peyton Haug is a journalism and international studies major at the University of Minnesota Duluth.

Bredsten and her family moved to the area earlier this year. She and her husband have two daughters, age 2 and 5, and are expecting another child. They have enjoyed vacationing in Duluth, and look forward to getting to know the area even more by spending time at parks and hiking trails. In her free time, Bredsten enjoys hunting, fishing and riding ATVs, as well as painting, yoga and reading.

Business news was previously covered by reporter Laura Butterbrodt, who also had the health beat. Butterbrodt now focuses only on health news coverage.

"Our newsroom is excited to add two experienced journalists in Brielle and Wyatt," said Rick Lubbers, News Tribune executive editor. "Brielle's business reporting experience will immediately be evident to our readers as she dives into the Duluth and Northland business scene. And Wyatt's TV journalism experience will help sharpen our digital content efforts and enable us to tell stories in multiple ways."

Laura Butterbrodt covers health for the Duluth News Tribune. She has a bachelor of arts in journalism from South Dakota State University and has been working as a reporter in Minnesota and South Dakota since 2014.
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