Author

Robert Zullo

Robert Zullo

Robert spent 13 years as a reporter and editor at weekly and daily newspapers before becoming editor of the Virginia Mercury in 2018. He was a staff writer and managing editor at Worrall Community Newspapers in Union, N.J., before spending five years in south Louisiana covering hurricanes, oil spills and Good Friday crawfish boils as a reporter and city editor for the The Courier and the Daily Comet newspapers in Houma and Thibodaux. He covered Richmond city hall for the Richmond Times-Dispatch from 2012 to 2013 and worked as a general assignment and city hall reporter for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette from 2013 to 2016. He returned to Richmond in 2016 to cover energy, environment and transportation for the Richmond Times-Dispatch. He grew up in Miami, Fla., and central New Jersey. A former waiter, armored car guard and appliance deliveryman, he is a graduate of the College of William and Mary. Contact him at [email protected]com

Four major new vaccination centers to open, a Democratic gubernatorial debate, an uptick in public participation at virtual meetings, and more headlines

By: - March 17, 2021

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere. • Four major vaccination centers are opening across Virginia: Danville, Portsmouth, South Chesterfield near Petersburg and Prince William, chosen via an “equity analysis” from the Virginia Department of Emergency Management because of high COVID-19 rates.—Richmond Times-Dispatch • “I think that if I had to […]

Yes, those CDC vaccine appointment emails are real, COVID among Henrico schools and Lynchburg police, McGuireWoods faces scrutiny over Open Technology Fund dispute, and more headlines

By: - March 16, 2021

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere. •  A former Old Dominion University student was sentenced to three years in prison Monday for his role in a White supremacists’ swatting conspiracy that targeted a Black church, his own university and a cabinet officer, among others.—Associated Press • Those vaccine appointment emails […]

Virginia tops 10,000 COVID deaths, nearly 1 million Virginians fully vaccinated, two more cities pull inmates from Hampton Roads Regional Jail, and more headlines

By: - March 15, 2021

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere. • The surrogate grandmother of a murder victim said she was stunned when the Virginia Parole Board, beset by a scandal over its failure to follow state law and its own regulations in releasing inmates, opted to release the killer just one month […]

COMMENTARY
A storm passes over the Capitol. (Ned Oliver/Virginia Mercury - Sept. 11, 2018)

It never seems to be the right time for campaign finance reform in Virginia

By: - March 5, 2021

St. Augustine — who famously longed for chastity and continence, but not just yet — would recognize a similar spiritual conundrum in Virginia senators on campaign finance reform. Sure thing. Just not right now. Last month, in the waning days of the 2021 General Assembly session, the Senate, on a voice vote, (which means there […]

Virginia Mercury

Flags flown at half mast to honor slain Stanley police officer, lawmakers approve affordable housing tax credits, one really big fish, and more headlines

By: - March 4, 2021

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere • Gov. Ralph Northam ordered state flags to fly at half mast in honor of Stanley police officer Dominic Winum, who was shot and killed during a traffic stop last week.—WDBJ • The General Assembly approved a new tax-credit program to incentivize affordable […]

Virginia Mercury

Virginia senator walks back threat to withhold Metro funding, Jill Biden visits VCU cancer center, swimming while handcuffed, and more headlines

By: - February 25, 2021

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere. • State Sen. Janet Howell, D-Fairfax, backed off a threat to withhold millions in Virginia funding for Metro if WMATA didn’t agree to put Capital One’s name on a station. “Obviously I was not seriously going to cut [Metro funding] by millions,” Howell […]

COMMENTARY

Yes Virginia, four of your congressmen voted to overturn the will of voters

By: - January 8, 2021

Few living have seen a more disgraceful day at the U.S. Capitol than Wednesday, when thousands of supporters of President Donald Trump, whipped into a frenzy beyond reason after months of lies about the election, bashed their way into the building in a deadly spectacle that will live in infamy. But in a way, the […]

COMMENTARY

‘Not a happy story’: But how does it end?

By: - January 5, 2021

Already the first days of 2021 feel less like the darkness before the dawn and more like a deeper plunge into our bitter polarization and the ceaseless ravages of the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite the arrival of vaccines, the initial batches have been slow to be doled out amid a morass of confusion at the state […]

Virginia state senator dies of COVID-19 complications

By: - January 1, 2021

Virginia State Sen. A. Benton “Ben” Chafin Jr., R-Russell, has died of COVID-19, the Senate Republican leadership announced Friday evening. “Tonight, as the Senate of Virginia comes to grips with this tremendous and untimely loss caused by COVID-19, our sympathy and prayers are with Ben’s wife, Lora Lee, their children and grandchildren, and Ben’s mother […]

COMMENTARY

2020 in review: Top 10 most-viewed Mercury stories of the year

By: - January 1, 2021

Journalism, of course, isn’t a popularity contest. The value of the work isn’t meant to be judged by how many people click on a given story. Indeed, wise reporters and editors stop questioning early in their careers why some stories, especially those that might seem more trivial, take flight while others of equal or greater […]

Virginia Mercury

Virginia averaging more than 3,500 new COVID cases a day, first-time unemployment claims fall, Tuskegee airman turns 100, and more headlines

By: - December 18, 2020

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere. • Virginia is averaging more than 3,500 coronavirus cases per day as the holidays approach and officials are urging people to stay home and get tested if they will travel.—Richmond Times-Dispatch • The number of Virginians filing first-time unemployment claims fell 13 percent […]

Virginia Mercury

Roanoke region sees major spike in COVID-19, Herring announces re-election campaign, birthday acts of kindness, and more headlines

By: - December 17, 2020

NEWS TO KNOW Our daily roundup of headlines from Virginia and elsewhere. • The Roanoke region has seen a major spike in COVID-19 cases. “This is very likely due to the Thanksgiving surge that we were expecting,” one health official said.—WVTF • Attorney General Mark Herring formally launched his re-election bid, though he faces Democratic […]