Editor-in-Chief Farewell: Bella Roesler

Isabella Roesler

“An interview isn’t a game of 20 questions,” Ms. Schneider said on my first day of Bark. I soon learned what she meant by that statement—the statement I then swore by throughout my journalistic career and eventually taught my peers.

Witnessing the power of mutual vulnerability in the interview process inspired me to teach it as a tool to my beloved Advanced Journalism class; I urged my fellow Barkies to establish it in their own journalistic work outside of our classroom interactions. I observed the impact of leading by example to encourage presence without artifice or pretense. Other than being an approachable and relatable leader, that was my main goal as an Editor-in-Chief: to share my communication style and affection for journalism to inspire. 

Reading next year’s Bark applications reassured me that I accomplished my goal. I realized how similar we Barkies are; we all share common feelings toward the Bark, feelings of pride, strength and vulnerability.


I have struggled with academic self-confidence since elementary school. I might not be a math or science person, but at the end of the day, I am my authentic self. My younger self would be very proud (and probably shocked) to know that I am an Editor-In-Chief of a nationally-recognized high school newspaper, and that, despite being subject to performance anxiety, I stood in front of and directed a class of 30 students to create a thoughtful, informative publication. Despite the notion in my head that I was the least academic Roesler sister, I actually discovered that I am just different, not insufficient. I have learned to embrace my differences and recognize their beauty.


When I was first handed my Redwood High School press pass in sophomore year, it felt like armor to protect me under the First Amendment and to benefit others.

Junior year, I gained a deep understanding of the title “reporter.” While the word is a topic of controversy and criticism, especially in the U.S., I spent my junior year storytelling and seeking out varieties of individuals—atheists, devout Catholics, LGBTQ members, anti-feminists, feminists, big mountain skiers, artists, victims of bullies and self harm, therapists and much more—to add genuine diversity to our reporting. I found that this title of “reporter” gave me a superpower: giving unheard people a curated megaphone.


Through my interviewing experiences, I learned that our mindsets and beliefs are based on what we’re surrounded by, but learning to interview with an open mind has inherent gifts. Empathizing with human journeys that may be vastly different to mine has brought a richer experience to my time on this earth. Something that became apparent to me was that when I truly connected to my sources and encouraged them to open up, their vulnerability allowed me to tell a story to which others connected. Asking questions can lead to unexpected, yet superior destinations, and I learned that it’s always worth a shot. Everyone in my life is welcome to share their story and I look forward to learning from it.