Rebecca Kiger

Rebecca Kiger
An aerial view of the train derailment site 11 days after the accident at the edge of town in East Palestine, OH.
(Photograph by Sean McCallister and Tolu Olasoji/Center for Contemporary Documentation)
Rebecca Kiger
Rebecca Kiger is working in Ohio as a Documentary Fellow. Visit fellow's website

Rebecca Kiger is a documentary photographer and native of central Appalachia.

She is also an educator and artist-in-residence through the Ohio Arts Council, teaching photography in high schools in the Rust Belt of Appalachian Ohio.

In collaboration with Bellaire High School art teacher Megan Ritchea, Kiger initiated a photography program, supported by the Center for Contemporary Documentation, to educate students about environmental issues in their own community by meeting and photographing activists, scientists, journalists, and everyday citizens. Their stories were exhibited in the community in May 2023.

As a photojournalist, Rebecca is a regular contributor to TIME, The New York Times, The Washington Post, NPR, and VOX, among other publications.

Bellaire High photography students
Front row from left Ana Arroyo, Miracle Smallwood Honeycutt, Brooklyn Zonker, Jenna Soland, Elizabeth Rogerson, artist-in-residence Rebecca Kiger and Maddie Miller. Pictured in the back row from left are Konnor Cruise, Dane D’Aquila, Raven Pettigrew, Heather Bennington, Torrey Klempa, Abby Craig, Gracelyn Maupin, Lyndzey Crupe and art teacher Megan Ritchea. Not pictured are Jocelyn Blon, Tauni Bleau Huntsman and Taylor Rife.
Boots from a former worker at Austin Masters, a fracking waste processing plant, were tested for radioactivity and "revealed radium levels roughly 15 times EPA levels for soil at Superfund sites." In 1980 Congress deemed fracking waste as non-hazardous and therefore exempt from federal rules. (Photograph by Dane D’Aquila. Assisted by: Abby Craig and Lyndzey Crupe)
Erin Smith, a resident of Bridgeport stands in her kitchen. Even though Bridegport's water supply now comes from Martins Ferry, which is safe to drink, Erin primarily uses bottled water. In a online poll taken by the Wheeling Intelligencer in November of 2022, only 46% of people believe that the water in the region is safe to drink. (Photograph by Maddie Miller)
Doug Potts, a retired school librarian, spends four hours every day picking up trash in town. (Photograph by Raven Pettigrew)
Maddie Miller, a photo student at Bellaire High School, and Professor Loughman use a net to collect aquatic wildlife in McMahon Creek in Ohio. (Photograph by Dane D’Aquila)
Crayfish specimen in the lab at West Liberty University. (Photograph by Taylor Rife)
Trucks deliver frac sand to the well pad. A single frac pad may use up to 10,000 tons of sand and 4 million gallons of water. (Photograph by Lyndzey Crupe)
Susan stands in her living room which overlooks the hydraulic fracking operation behind her home. "It's pretty loud. I'm up constantly. I have a sound machine to try and drown it out, but it can't really be drowned out, " said Susan referring to the fracking operation behind her home. "Ironically, I work in a sleep center." (Photograph by Raven Pettigrew)
A coal slurry pond in front of Susan's home. Resource extraction has surrounded her. "We're transitioning away from steel and coal, but are heavily invested in petrochemical production in our area. (Photograph by Connor Cruze)
A student at Bellaire High School holds a phone with an app that allows her to track air quality from small low-cost air monitors that Yuri Gorby helped install across the Ohio Valley. (Photograph by Abby Craig)