Spotlight Q&A with member David Wahlberg, Wisconsin State Journal

David Wahlberg

Where are you from/how far did you travel?

So I sort of had to travel from Madison, Wis., although I was actually at a different seminar the first part of this week in D.C. so I kind of came from there.

How many AHCJ conferences have you been to?

I don’t know for sure, but I would say about 10. I think my first one was in 2002 or 2003.

What’s been your favorite thing about the conference?

Can I pick two? So a panel today [Saturday] about stem cells was really interesting. Stem cell research is a big thing in Madison at the university there. So it’s a really important topic for me, and it’s been confusing how to cover these sort of retail stem cell clinics that are popping up, and we heard from some really good experts, including someone from the FDA who really addressed that and gave me some more information about that. And then I also thought the field trip I did on Thursday was good.

What did you enjoy doing in Baltimore?

I have severely minimized my ventures out because I’ve had really bad allergies this week. So I haven’t done as much as I would normally do, but I did walk down and see the harbor yesterday.

What draws you to health journalism?

I think especially at a general newspaper where I cover all aspects of health, I like the variety of science, health policy, consumer health, the business of health care. It sort of uses every part of your brain.

What do you think is the biggest asset of AHCJ?

I think it’s a really great professional home for health journalists, regardless of whether they’re working in an organization or they’re a freelancer. It’s a great mix of minds who have a lot of experience, and they’re very willing to share their insight, and it’s a fun group of people.

What’s the last book you read?

Wolf Pack” by C.J. Box

Who/what do you think everyone should be reading?

La sombra del viento” (“The Shadow of the Wind”) by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

What’s your favorite pet?

Well I have to say black lab mix dogs because I have two of them. If they heard me say anything else, they would disown me.

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