James Brown


Before coming to WXXI News, James spent a decade in marketing communications, while freelance writing for Rochester City Newspaper. While at City, his reporting focused primarily on arts and entertainment.

James cut his teeth in journalism as an associate producer and weekend assignment editor at WHEC-TV.

A Rochester native and an East High School graduate, James earned a Bachelor of Communications degree from Niagara University where he won awards for his poetry and resurrected the school’s radio station.


Local officials took part in a ceremony on Monday for a War on Terror Memorial to be built in Rochester.

In his remarks before the groundbreaking, Monroe County Executive Adam Bello said the structure, which is being built near the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Highland Park, will honor the lives of those who have died in overseas conflicts since 1990. 

“This is an important and emotional day for the countless people who worked tirelessly to make this day possible,” said Bello.

Max Schulte / WXXI News

Cars were backed up a block at times as people came to the Boys and Girls Club Thursday to pick up food. 

Most people came by car, while others walked with laundry or shopping carts. Three hundred people were registered for this one and hundreds more for similar events around the area.

Max Schulte / WXXI News

Members of Rochester City Council and concerned community members are calling for a deeper look into the incident between a 10-year-old girl and city police. 

Rochester police arrested three people during a traffic stop on Route 104 Sunday. , Rochester Police Chief La’Ron Singletary says during that stop, officers handcuffed a 10-year-old girl who was in the car to assist in “controlling her actions and for the safety of everyone involved."

Max Schulte / WXXI News

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said this week that groups of 10 or less people will be allowed to gather for the Memorial Day holiday. But Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren wants city residents to be careful when they do so.

“We understand it’s getting warm. You want to see your friends. You want to see your family. Be safe. But also be smart,” Warren said. “Protect your circle.”


Data from the Monroe County Health Department say hospitalizations for the coronavirus have reached a new high. As of Sunday night, 124 people were hospitalized. 

There were 46 new confirmed cases and one person died bringing the total of COVID-19 deaths in the county to 172. 

Foodlink’s emergency food box distributions are going on throughout the Finger Lakes region. 

There are three distributions in Monroe County this week, two in the city of Rochester, and the other at the East Rochester Municipal building. 

But distributions are also taking place in Genesee, Ontario, Livingston, Seneca, Wayne, and Wyoming counties. 

Foodlink said a typical box includes pasta, canned goods, cereal, among other items.

All distributions will take place in large, open spaces like parking lots in order to maintain social distancing. 


Pediatric Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome (PMIS) is a new illness associated with COVID-19 that doctors in Rochester are trying to understand.

There have been more than 100 cases of PMIS in New York state, mainly pre-teens and younger children.

“We’re working with multiple federal and state agencies to document and try to identify all the symptoms and signs that bring kids to us with PMIS,” said Dr. Patrick Brophy from the University of Rochester Medical Center.


The pandemic is forcing small businesses everywhere to reimagine how they operate, and Laughing Gull Chocolates in Rochester is no different. 

The East Main Street shop is owned by three young moms: Karla Boyle, Allison Zukoski and Lindsay Tarnoff. Tarnoff said the business relied heavily on in-store chocolate- and truffle-making workshops, which had to end when the pandemic hit.

James Brown / WXXI

Assemblyman Harry Bronson and his primary challenger for the 138th District seat, Alex Yudelson, have nothing but good things to say about incoming Rochester City School District Superintendent Lesli Myers-Small. Multiple sources tell WXXI News that she is the board’s choice for the role. 

Bronson said he knew for a while that Myers-Small was in the mix for the top job at the district. He’s discussed her resume with education experts. 

James Brown

The Rochester City School Board adopted a budget Thursday night for the upcoming school year. The plan was designed to bridge an $87 million budget gap. It passed by a 6-1 vote with Commissioner Beatriz LeBron voting no. 

The plan cuts more than 300 teaching and staffing positions, and closes five elementary schools. One of those school will be converted into a Pre-K center and another into a middle school, among numerous other changes.