Journalist Ben Rappaport joins Border Belt Independent

The Border Belt Independent is proud to announce Ben Rappaport has joined the staff as a full-time reporter.

Rappaport comes from the Chatham News + Record, where he spent the past year and a half reporting on education, local government and more in Chatham County. His experience also includes a three-month stint as a reporter and host for Bush Radio in Cape Town, South Africa, where he hosted a radio show about local transportation and infrastructure issues in the Western Cape.

Prior to graduating from the UNC-Chapel Hill Hussman School of Journalism & Media in December 2021, Rappaport wrote for the Daily Tar Heel and served as its assistant opinion editor. He also reported on local issues in and around Chapel Hill as a part-time reporter for WCHL and

“I am excited to dig deep on the issues affecting rural communities in southeast N.C. with Border Belt,” Rappaport said. “I have a passion for serving my community through storytelling, and I believe the mission of BBI aligns with those goals.”

When not reporting the news, Rappaport can be found waxing poetic about his beloved L.A. Dodgers, listening to podcasts on long nature walks or attending concerts for indie folk bands.

Rappaport, who started with the Border Belt Independent on June 19, will write stories that affect the lives of residents in Bladen, Columbus, Robeson and Scotland counties. Email him at and follow him on Twitter @b_rappaport