Matt Erickson is the editor of the Brainerd Dispatch. He has been with the Brainerd Dispatch for 17 years, starting as a reporter in 2000 covering the city government and crime beats. In 2011, he took the position of night editor and was named editor in 2014. Erickson graduated from the University of North Dakota with a degree in communications. Reach him at

Gabriel Lagarde is a governmental affairs reporter at the Brainerd Dispatch, covering the city of Brainerd and education, along with breaking news and features. He joined the Dispatch in 2017. He grew up in Shell Lake, Wis., and graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire with a journalism degree in May of 2017. Prior to joining the Dispatch, he worked as a student journalist at the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram as a part-time reporter. Reach him at

Frank Lee is a features writer and government affairs reporter for the Brainerd Dispatch, covering Crow Wing County. He joined the Dispatch in 2017. He attended the University of Michigan, where he studied mass communication and philosophy. After graduation he worked at the St. Cloud Times/Times Media as a reporter and assistant editor and at Leighton Broadcasting as a journalist. Reach him at

Jennifer Kraus has been a reporter at the Brainerd Dispatch since January 2000 and has covered pretty much every beat there is. Currently, her main coverage area is breaking news, public safety and the courts. She is also the entertainment editor. Stockinger grew up in the St. Cloud area and earned an associate's degree from Brainerd Community College, now called Central Lakes College. She then earned her bachelor's degree from Moorhead State University in mass communication and journalism. Reach her at

Chelsey Perkins is the Brainerd Dispatch's community editor, also contributing to a regular food column "Puttin' on The Mitts" and hosting the DispatchCast. A lakes area native, Perkins graduated from the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities, with a bachelor's degree in professional journalism and a minor in social justice. Before joining the Dispatch in 2014 as a staff writer, she was a staff writer at the Echo Journal in Pequot Lakes and was the research editor at Utne Reader magazine. Reach her at

Renee Richardson began her Brainerd Dispatch reporting career in 1996. She was named senior reporter a couple of years later, the second in the paper's history, and became managing editor in February 2015. She continues to cover business, the Baxter City Council and produces a weekly health section, Monday Motivator, and writes feature stories. Richardson graduated from St. Cloud State University with a bachelor's degree in mass communications. She interned at the St. Cloud Times working on business stories. Reach her at


Past Contributors

Spenser Bickett formerly covered the Brainerd City Council and education for the Dispatch. A native of the Twin Cities, Bickett attended the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, where he majored in journalism with a minor in political science. After graduation, he worked for the International Falls Journal as a staff writer before coming to Brainerd. He now works in the Twin Cities.

Zach Kayser was formerly the politics and government reporter at the Brainerd Dispatch. He also covered a hodgepodge of other topics, most importantly feature stories on veterans. Kayser is a 2012 graduate of the University of Minnesota, Morris. He now works in the Twin Cities.