New job!

Just started, but not wasting time. This first-person package got mad play online and picked up by NBC affiliates across the country. A quirky presidential primary story for Presidents’ Day – just what the station ordered! And I didn’t fall off the roof. Here’s how NowThis (an NBC News partner) cut it:

Doing double duty on DARPA Robots

Under certain circumstances, I can clone myself and produce two stories at once — a video package plus a print story. Robots compete in response to California disaster simulation RAQUEL MARIA DILLON, ASSOCIATED PRESS http://www.salon.com/2015/06/05/robots_compete_in_response_to_california_disaster_simulation/

Straight Outta Compton: Suge Knight arrested

Soon after Suge Knight was involved in a fatal hit-and-run, I found myself hanging on a corner in Compton. I did double duty for both wire and video and earned the byline. This despite the fact that my hip-hop generation membership card expired soon after the release of Missy Elliot’s second album.

High-tech cargo airship under construction in SoCal

Getting everyone on board for a cross-format package is no small feat. I spotted this story, pitched it to powers-that-be in Video and to the local editors in Los Angeles. The result was worth it and got great play in print and in video. High-tech cargo airship under construction in California By RAQUEL MARIA DILLON  January 30, 2013 […]

Tucson Shooting: Ron Barber tours memorial

I was sent to Tucson to cover the Gabrielle Giffords shooting. This is one of a handful of packages I turned that week. I also contributed to multiple text stories, including the first account from the intern who staunched the congresswoman’s blood and helped save her life.  

Bilingual black church in LA puts the ‘hola’ in holy

Blacks, Latinos pray together at traditionally African American Pentecostal church in changing LA neighborhood By RAQUEL MARIA DILLON | Associated Press Writer LOS ANGELES – The black choir clapped and swayed, propelled by the organ’s groove and drums’ beat as gospel music filled the tiny New Life in Christ Church on Compton Avenue. The rhythm […]

Los Globos de Oro y los Latin Grammys

I help out the Entertainment vertical in the AP’s LA bureau when I can. Below is a story I wrote for the Spanish-language wire.  Every November I cover the Latin Grammys for an English-speaking audience. I try to focus on acts that would interest someone who prefers to read in English but still follows rock en espanol, reggaeton, cantautores, as well as the usual suspects.  My favorite […]

‘All hell broke loose’: 30,000 flee California wildfire

‘All hell broke loose’: 30,000 flee Santa Barbara wildfire By Raquel Maria Dillon | ASSOCIATED PRESS SANTA BARBARA, Calif. (AP) _ Turning the horizon a lurid orange and raining embers on roofs as it advanced, a wildfire that has destroyed scores of homes in the hills menaced the celebrity enclave of Santa Barbara and other […]

Grandma: Octuplets mom ‘obsessed’ with babies

Octuplets’ grandma: Unmarried mom conceived all 14 babies in vitro, ‘obsessed’ with having kids (Nadya Suleman’s mother sounded exhausted and exasperated when I reached her on the phone only days after the octuplets were born, but she shared a few emotional details before hanging up abruptly. This story went unmatched and kept my byline throughout […]