Kelsey Harkness is senior news producer at The Daily Signal, covering education reform and social issues such as abortion, religious liberty, and same-sex marriage.
Harkness produces videos in addition to writing news stories and in-depth investigative features for The Daily Signal, which she joined for its launch in Washington in June 2014. Her work includes on-camera interviews, information graphics, and documentaries.
In 2015, she garnered more than 4 million views with a short, documentary-style video featuring Aaron and Melissa Klein, the Oregon bakers whom the state ordered to pay $135,000 for declining to make a wedding cake for a same-sex couple. Fox News Channel’s “The O’Reilly Factor” played the video, prompting news organizations nationwide to pick up her work.
Harkness was one of a few Washington-based reporters to shed light on the Justice Department’s secretive Operation Choke Point, which critics said put financial pressure on pawn shops, gun stores and other businesses that were out of favor with the Obama administration. Her stories helped spark hearings and legislation in Congress and drew the attention of media across the nation.
Her work has been featured by Drudge Report, The Federalist, Breitbart, Newsweek, and Fox News Channel, among others. She also has appeared on The Blaze’s “The Dana Show,” One America News, and regional and national radio shows, including those of hosts Lars Larson, Steve Deace, and Sam Sorbo.
Harkness was named senior news producer in March 2016. Before joining The Daily Signal, the multimedia news organization of The Heritage Foundation, as a news producer, she worked at Fox News Channel in New York City. She was a production assistant there before writing and producing videos for Fox News Magazine, a lifestyle website.
Harkness’s production background began when she interned for a Connecticut filmmaker at Pyewackitt Productions, LLC, and rose to a senior assistant there. She credits the independent production company with inspiring her passion for putting a face to complicated, policy-based issues.
She graduated from Lafayette College in Easton, Pa., with a self-designed double major in international affairs and film and media in politics.
Harkness, who grew up in Wilton, Conn., currently resides in Washington, D.C. She balances her passion for politics with an affinity for yoga, running a blog called Capital Yoga Girl.