Julián Aguilar reports on politics and border affairs from the Texas-Mexico border. His focuses include immigration reform and enforcement, voter ID, international trade, border security, and the drug trade. His political coverage has included local, legislative and congressional races in Texas, as well as local and national elections in Mexico. Before joining the Tribune, he was a freelance writer for the Fort Worth Weekly; a government and crime reporter for the Laredo Morning Times; and a political writer for the Rio Grande Guardian. A native of El Paso, he has a bachelor's degree in English from the University of Texas and a master's degree in journalism from the Frank W. Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism at the University of North Texas. Read Articles by Julián Aguilar
Jennifer Ajluni is the Development Officer at The Texas Tribune. Before joining the Tribune in June of 2018, she worked in politics at the statewide and national levels. She is a graduate of American University.
Emily Albracht is a designer at The Texas Tribune. She creates all materials for the Texas Tribune Events series and collaborates with the editorial staff and news apps team to visualize investigative stories in a meaningful way. Before joining the Tribune’s creative team in the spring of 2014, she worked as a freelance designer with the Austin music and festival scene.
Claire Allbright is the media relations fellow at The Texas Tribune. She was the Tribune's first reporting fellow in Washington, D.C. and also worked with the Tribune as an investigative reporting fellow. She is a senior at The University of Texas at Austin, where she studies journalism and government. She is a member of the Liberal Arts Honors Program and is minoring in Arabic. During the fall of 2017, Claire was chosen as an Archer Fellow, and had the opportunity to study and intern in Washington. She currently serves as The Daily Texan's news editor, and previously reported on the 85th Texas Legislature for the student-run campus newspaper. Claire loves spending time with her family and listening to the boss, Bruce Springsteen. Read Articles by Claire Allbright
Carlos Anchondo is the water fellow at The Texas Tribune. He is a second-year master’s candidate in the journalism program at The University of Texas at Austin, where he also serves as a teaching assistant. Carlos has previously reported for The Austin American-Statesman and Catholic Spirit, the newspaper for the Diocese of Austin. Carlos is an avid runner and enjoys time spent on Austin’s Greenbelt. Read Articles by Carlos Anchondo
Liam Andrew ensures that The Texas Tribune's systems for content management, distribution, and analysis align with organizational priorities and user needs. He joined the Tribune in 2015 after completing a master's degree in MIT’s Comparative Media Studies program, where he worked with a variety of research groups including the Nieman Journalism Lab, Center for Civic Media, and HyperStudio. An Iowa native, Liam earned his bachelors studying literature and music at Yale University.
Val Asensio is a Magna Cum Laude graduate of the University of Florida. She's been awarded patents for firmware inventions while at Kodak, and developed embedded CAN controller software for automotive traction control systems for Motorola. Then, she took a detour and co-founded a motorcycle travel magazine, which went on to win eight Dallas and Houston Press Club awards, including one for Val for "Best Column in a Magazine." During that time, she authored columns in two national magazines. After Ride Texas was acquired by Emmis Communications, she turned her attention towards creating technology for good, which brought her to the Texas Tribune engineering team in 2018.
Aman Batheja worked for eight years at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, most of that time covering state and local politics. A native of Cedarhurst, New York, he has an undergraduate degree in journalism and psychology from New York University and a master's in economics from the University of Texas at Arlington. Read Articles by Aman Batheja
Bobby Blanchard runs the Tribune’s social media efforts. He also spearheads "This Is Your Texas: Campus Correspondents," an online community for college students who want to discuss higher education policy and news. A graduate of UT-Austin, Bobby spent his first year out of college at The Dallas Morning News as a reporting fellow, covering Texas politics and breaking news. He got his start in journalism in the poorly lit basement of The Daily Texan, followed by internships at the Houston Chronicle, KUT News and yes, the Tribune. Born and raised in the Houston area, Bobby is a native Texan. He relies on a steady supply of Tex-Mex and Red Bull to survive. Read Articles by Bobby Blanchard
Ty Brockhoeft joined The Texas Tribune in 2017. He builds and maintains The Texas Tribune's publishing systems, tends to the website’s performance and user experience. Ty has lived in Austin, TX for over 20 years and has a bachelor's degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Texas.
Christian Burno is the first events fellow at The Texas Tribune. She is a public relations senior at The University of Texas at Arlington and a member of the Public Relations Student Society of America. Christian previously worked at UTA’s student-run newspaper as social media editor, life and entertainment editor and reporter.
Elizabeth Byrne is a reporting fellow at The Texas Tribune, where she covers health and human services issues. She is a junior at Northwestern University, where she studies journalism and sociology. Elizabeth previously served as the Summer Editor in Chief and Campus Editor for The Daily Northwestern, where she covered local and campus news. If she's not in the newsroom, then she's enjoying the outdoors or searching for the perfect mac and cheese. Read Articles by Elizabeth Byrne
Darla Cameron is the data visuals editor at The Texas Tribune in Austin, where she leads a team of developers at the intersection of graphics and news applications. She loves to use data to hold public officials accountable and create more transparency in the murky world of state politics. Her team's visualizations help readers understand Texas better. Previously, she was a graphics editor at The Washington Post. She began her career in Florida at the Tampa Bay Times after completing a fellowship at the Poynter Institute. Darla is a Colorado native with a degree in journalism from the University of Missouri Read Articles by Darla Cameron
Shiying Cheng is a fellow on the data visuals team at The Texas Tribune. She studied Computational Data Journalism for her Post-Baccalaureate at Columbia Graduate School of Journalism and Political Science for her Bachelor’s at Colorado College. In the past, Shiying has interned at The Wall Street Journal, where she pitched and produced enterprise interactive visual and data stories about politics and business. Shiying is excited to cover the 86th session of the Texas Legislature at the Tribune. Read Articles by Shiying Cheng
Natalie Choate has a long history in Texas politics and media. In a previous life she worked two legislative sessions in the Texas Capitol, served as government relations coordinator for Trinity Industries, completed Annie's List Campaign School and was both a political fundraiser and campaign consultant. Natalie started with The Texas Tribune in January 2011 and today is the director of media relations and partnerships for the largest statehouse newsroom in the country. She is a University of Texas alumna, a Leadership Austin graduate and an unapologetic news junkie.
Kiah Collier reports on energy and the environment for the Tribune. Since graduating from the University of Texas at Austin with degrees in philosophy and multimedia journalism, Kiah has reported on state and local government and politics for publications across the state, including the Austin-American Statesman and the Houston Chronicle. Kiah began her career at the San Angelo Standard-Times in West Texas, where she chronicled a burgeoning oil-and-gas boom and broke news about energy companies' voluminous water use during a prolific drought. The high point of Kiah's Tribune tenure so far came in early 2017 when she won a Peabody Award for her work on a project that examined research into a specific type of hurricane scientists say will eventually devastate the city of Houston. Read Articles by Kiah Collier
Acacia Coronado is the investigative fellow for the Texas Tribune. She is a junior at the University of Texas at Austin, where she is seeking a degree in journalism with a certification in human rights and social justice. Previously, she has worked with The Daily Texan, where she wrote for the Life and Arts department, written for The Austin Chronicle and produced radio features for The Texas Standard. She has also interned with the Teresa Lozano Long Institute of Latin American Studies and the Human Rights Clinic at the University of Texas School of Law. As a member of the UT chapter of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, she has also produced investigative work with a focus on the borderlands and immigration in partnership with the Austin American-Statesman. This semester, she will also be working on launching a Spanish-language online media resource for the Central Texas area. Read Articles by Acacia Coronado
Daniel Craigmile previously worked at Mutual Mobile, The University of Texas at Austin, Electronic Data Systems and PricewaterhouseCoopers. He grew up in San Antonio and holds a degree in Computer Science from Texas A&M University.
Justin Dehn is a multimedia producer at the Tribune whose focus is video and television production. He's been shooting and producing TV news for more than a decade, most recently as a staff photojournalist at Austin's KVUE-TV from 2006 to 2010. At the Tribune, Dehn has been behind the camera for Tribune special projects God and Governing, Hurting for Work and Paid to Prosecute, as well the stories we produce each week for our dozen TV partners around the state and segments for social media. Read Articles by Justin Dehn
Michael Rey de Leon
Michael Rey de Leon serves as Technical Director & A/V engineer for Studio 919, as well as providing on-location support for Tribune’s remote event series. Michael Rey joined the Texas Tribune in 2018 after spending years in the field working for organizations including MTV, SXSW, CBS & The University of Texas at Austin. A sixth-generation Texan, with familial roots in the Rio Grande Valley, Michael Rey is also an accomplished multi-instrumentalist, who has worked with a myriad of recording artists. When he’s not wrapping cables, Michael Rey dedicates his time to his family, cooking and curating an extensive collection of musical instruments. Read Articles by Michael Rey de Leon
Chris Essig builds data visualizations and news apps at the Texas Tribune. Before joining the team in February 2017, Chris spent almost six years in Iowa, including two and a half years as a developer at The Gazette in Cedar Rapids and three years as an online editor at the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier. He is originally from Illinois and will never complain about the winter weather here in Texas. Read Articles by Chris Essig
Juan Figueroa is a photography fellow at the Tribune. He is a journalism and Latin American studies senior at the University of Texas at Austin, where he is also a multimedia intern at KUT/KUTX. He previously worked as the photo editor at The Daily Texan, UT’s student newspaper. Originally from Dalhart, he misses the wide open spaces. Read Articles by Juan Figueroa
Brandon Formby writes about the challenges facing Texas’ largest metro areas as they experience unbridled growth. He joined the Tribune in October 2016 and is the organization’s first reporter based in Dallas. The Texas Tech University graduate spent more than 13 years at The Dallas Morning News, where he covered transportation, local government and politics. Read Articles by Brandon Formby
Rodney Gibbs is chief product officer of The Texas Tribune, where he is responsible for defining the Tribune's digital roadmap and strategy. Leading collaborations between editorial, engineering and design, he oversees a portfolio of products that bolster the Tribune’s position as a leader in journalism, user engagement and innovation. Over his 25-year career, he has helped broadcast and digital media companies navigate disruptive transitions and adapt to new platforms and audiences. Rodney founded and sold two digital media companies and has served on a number of boards—including KLRU, KUT/KUTX, Austin Film Society, The International Game Developers Association and Big Brothers Big Sisters. Outside of work, he’s passionate about travel, film, record collecting and swimming holes. Rodney has a BA from Rice University and a MFA from The University of Texas at Austin. Read Articles by Rodney Gibbs
Andrew Gibson joined The Texas Tribune in 2016. Before that, he worked for more than two years at the Orlando Sentinel, building data visualizations, news apps and interactive projects. He also contributed to the Sentinel's coverage of the Pulse nightclub shooting. Andrew is originally from Denver (go Broncos) and graduated from the University of Missouri in 2014. At the Tribune, he helps make the website move fast and look pretty.
Sarah Glen manages the Tribune’s membership program and paid newsletters. She joined the Tribune team in 2018 after spending four years as a product manager at Chalkbeat, a nonprofit education news network focused on equity issues. Originally from North Carolina, she's happy to be back in a warmer climate and excited to help loyal readers get more deeply involved in the Tribune's reporting. Sarah first fell in love with journalism while working at The Daily Tar Heel and earning her bachelors degrees in journalism and political science at UNC-Chapel Hill.
Emily Goldstein is the copy editing fellow at The Texas Tribune. She is a doctoral student at The University of Texas at Austin, where she researches media coverage of mental health. Emily previously worked as a copy editor at The Dallas Morning News and the Dallas Observer. She has bachelor's degree from the University of Missouri and a master's degree from the University of North Texas, both in journalism.
Catherine Grooms manages advertising operations at The Texas Tribune. Before joining the Tribune in the fall of 2017, she worked as a clothing designer in New York where she also attended Parson's School of Design. As a native Austinite she is glad to be back in her hometown.
Miguel Gutierrez Jr.
Miguel Gutierrez Jr. is the Tribune's photographer/photo editor. He oversees our photography operation, thinking strategically about how to tell visually rich stories about Texas government and politics with the help of our network of talented freelance photographers across the state. Gutierrez, an Illinois native who is fluent in Spanish, came to us from New York, where he was working as a multimedia producer for the state attorney general’s office. But he knows Texas well. He received two master’s degrees from the University of Texas at Austin — in journalism and Latin American studies — and worked as a multimedia producer at KUT. Gutierrez has a bachelor’s degree in Latin American and Latino studies from the University of Illinois at Chicago. He has also worked in film production in Los Angeles. Read Articles by Miguel Gutierrez Jr.
Dave Harmon joined the Tribune in January 2017 as the editor for the investigative and projects team. After graduating from the University of Texas with a journalism degree, he started his reporting career in the Rio Grande Valley at The (McAllen) Monitor, covering health care and the environment. After a short stint at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, he returned to Austin and spent 18 years at the Austin American-Statesman as a reporter, assistant metro editor and finally a member of the investigative team. Read Articles by Dave Harmon
Ben Hasson previously worked at RMM Online Advertising and interned at media company Super!Alright! He has also worked as a freelance designer for print and the web, mostly for the Austin independent music and film scene. He grew up in Tucson and graduated from the University of Texas with a bachelor's degree in design. Read Articles by Ben Hasson
Ashley Hebler is on the engineering team at The Texas Tribune and enjoys implementing engaging and meaningful experiences for users on the web. She received a bachelor's degree in Agricultural Economics at Texas A&M University and attended Texas State University to receive a master's degree in Mass Communication with a focus on digital media. Ashley is a native Texan from Galveston and enjoys navigating the beautiful rivers of the Texas Hill Country.
April Hinkle spent more than 20 years at Texas Monthly, stepping down as publisher in May 2010. During her tenure, she positioned the publication as one of the top 10 monthly publications in the country based on total advertising pages and was also instrumental in the launch of texasmonthly.com and its ongoing development. Hinkle, who holds an advertising degree from the University of Texas, served on the national marketing board for the National Retail Federation and was the founding chairwoman of its Retail Advertising and Marketing Association Southwest Advisory Committee. She also served on the Austin Society Board-Philanthropy Chair, Club Corporation of America and is a founding board member of Lake Travis Young Life and past board member of Young Life Austin West. Recently, she received the Media Star Award from the Human Development and Consumer Sciences Department in the College of Technology at the University of Houston. She is married and has four children. As a family, they have been featured in marketing campaigns for Southwest Airlines and Chevrolet.
John Jordan does a little bit of everything at The Texas Tribune. In addition working with our great photographers to editing our Directory of elected officials, John manages the day-to-day operations at the Tribune and makes sure we have good coffee to drink. Before coming to work at the Tribune, John spent several decades as a touring and recording musician. In 2005, he left the road to join a statewide political campaign. After that, John worked for an Austin-based nonprofit, then joined the Austin Bureau of The Dallas Morning News, where he worked for four years before joining the staff at The Texas Tribune. Read Articles by John Jordan
Abby Livingston joined the Tribune in 2014 as the publication's first Washington Bureau Chief. In this role, she won the 2017 National Press Club Award for Washington Regional Reporting. Previously, she covered political campaigns, House leadership and Congress for Roll Call, the Capitol Hill newspaper. A seventh-generation Texan, Abby graduated from the University of Texas at Austin. She grew up in Fort Worth and has appeared in an episode of "The Bold and The Beautiful." Abby pitched and produced political segments for CNN and worked as an editor for The Hotline, National Journal’s campaign tipsheet. Abby began her journalism career as a desk assistant at NBC News in Washington, working her way up to the political unit, where she researched stories for Nightly News, the Today Show and Meet the Press. In keeping with the Trib’s great history of hiring softball stars, Abby is a three-time MVP (the most in game history —Ed.) for The Bad News Babes, the women’s press softball team that takes on female members of Congress in the annual Congressional Women’s Softball breast cancer charity game. Read Articles by Abby Livingston
Richard Loria is a recent graduate of the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, and a former intern at the Mail & Guardian. In 2019, he shot his first documentary, The Land Is Ours. He speaks Mandarin and French. Read Articles by Richard Loria
Corrie MacLaggan is the Tribune's managing editor. Previously, the Austin native worked as a national correspondent for Reuters, writing and editing stories about Texas and nearby states and overseeing a network of freelance writers. Before joining Reuters, she covered Texas government and politics for the Austin American-Statesman, writing about everything from gubernatorial races to food stamp application backlogs. She spent her first year at the Statesman writing for the newspaper's weekly Spanish-language publication. She has also worked in Mexico City, where she wrote for publications including the Miami Herald's Mexico edition, Latin Trade magazine and the Jewish Telegraphic Agency. Her first reporting job was at the El Paso Times. Corrie is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she studied journalism and Spanish. Read Articles by Corrie MacLaggan
Catherine Marfin is a reporting fellow for The Texas Tribune. She is a senior at the University of Texas at Austin pursuing a bachelors degree in journalism and public relations. Before coming to the Tribune, she interned at the Houston Chronicle, the Austin-Bergstrom International Airport and the Austin American-Statesman. She previously served as managing editor for The Daily Texan, UT-Austin's student-run campus newspaper. Read Articles by Catherine Marfin
Jolie McCullough reports on Texas criminal justice issues and policy for the Texas Tribune. She came to the Tribune in early 2015 from the Albuquerque Journal, where she worked four years on breaking news and data-driven projects. She is a graduate of Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication; while there, she interned as a reporter and online producer at the Arizona Republic and served as the web editor of the student-run newspaper, the State Press. Read Articles by Jolie McCullough
María Méndez is an audience engagement fellow for the 86th Texas Legislative Session. Méndez is a journalism and sociology senior at the University of Texas at Austin, where she works at The Daily Texan and also developed a Spanish-language news aggregation service. Previously, she reported for the Austin American-Statesman’s breaking news desk and the Austin Chronicle’s news department. Read Articles by María Méndez
Forrest Milburn is an audience engagement fellow at The Texas Tribune. Previously, Forrest interned at the Dallas Morning News on their politics team, the Texas Observer on their audience team, and at the Houston Chronicle covering state politics, as well as at the San Antonio Express-News on the paper's metro desk and the Austin American-Statesman, where he covered the 85th legislative session. As he approaches the end of his senior year at the University of Texas at Austin, Forrest has also worked way too many semesters at his school's paper, The Daily Texan, where he currently serves as managing editor. A longtime Dallas local, he's excited to take another break from his hometown, where the shopping malls are aplenty and the traffic is awful — but not as bad as Austin. Read Articles by Forrest Milburn
Ayan Mittra joined the Tribune after working more than 10 years at The Dallas Morning News. He spent his first seven years there as a copy editor. In 2008, he moved to the political desk, supervising the daily presentations and working with reporters in the field. He then worked as a night city editor, supervising the coverage of late-breaking news. He was also on the editing team for the 2009 and 2011 legislative sessions. A native of Beaumont, Ayan graduated with a journalism degree from the University of Texas at Austin. Read Articles by Ayan Mittra
Shannon Najmabadi is the higher education reporter at the Tribune, where she started as a fellow in 2017. She's reported on secrecy that's lingered after a sexual assault scandal; a costly way one university responded to a controversial speaker; and on a state law that bars teachers, nurses and other license-holders from working if they fall behind on their student loans. Off the higher education beat, Shannon has written about the narrow way Texas defines a "pickle," the Trump administration's zero-tolerance policy, and how Immigration and Customs Enforcement uses basements, hotels and office buildings as short-term way stations for people in their custody. She is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley and Columbia University. Read Articles by Shannon Najmabadi
Grace Neumann is the Art & Design Fellow at the Texas Tribune. She is currently in her senior year at the University of Texas at Austin, where she studies government. She is also a photojournalist for UT's Cactus Yearbook. Grace was previously a page designer for Texas A&M University's student newspaper, The Battalion. She's an avid hiker and reader, and can pretty much always been found with a camera on hand. Read Articles by Grace Neumann
Emma Platoff is a breaking news and civil courts reporter at the Tribune, where she started as a fellow in 2017. She is the first to fill either role. A recent graduate of Yale University, Emma is the former managing editor of the Yale Daily News and a former intern at The Philadelphia Inquirer and the Hartford Courant. Read Articles by Emma Platoff
Cassandra Pollock is an engagement reporter for The Texas Tribune, which she joined in June 2017 after a stint as a fellow during the 85th Texas Legislature. She graduated in 2017 from The University of Texas at Austin’s School of Journalism. Cassi has previously reported for The Daily Texan, the university’s official student newspaper, and The Washington Examiner in Washington, D.C. Read Articles by Cassandra Pollock
Terry Quinn is a fifth-generation Texan and a graduate of The University of Texas at Austin. She has worked as a volunteer and professional for over 20 years to raise funds to support many non-profit organizations in Austin and around Texas, most recently The Nature Conservancy of Texas and The Contemporary Austin. Terry coordinates the activities and outreach to the Circle Level members of The Texas Tribune and the individuals whose philanthropy make the mission of the Tribune possible.
Ross Ramsey is executive editor and co-founder of The Texas Tribune, where he writes regular columns on politics, government and public policy. Before joining the Tribune, Ross was editor and co-owner of Texas Weekly. He did a 28-month stint in government as associate deputy comptroller for policy and director of communications with the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts. Before that, he reported for the Houston Chronicle from its Austin bureau and for the Dallas Times Herald, first on the business desk in Dallas and later as its Austin bureau chief, and worked as a Dallas-based freelance business writer, writing for regional and national magazines and newspapers. Ross got his start in journalism in broadcasting, covering news for radio stations in Denton and Dallas. Read Articles by Ross Ramsey
Emily Ramshaw is the editor-in-chief of The Texas Tribune, a nonpartisan digital news organization that produces politics and policy news, data and events statewide, and operates the largest statehouse reporting bureau in the nation. Under her leadership, the Tribune — billed “one of the nonprofit news sector’s runaway success stories” — has won a Peabody Award, several national Murrow Awards and top honors from the Online News Association. By way of its free syndication model, the Tribune has filled the pages of Texas newspapers, broadcast on TV and video airwaves statewide, and provided Texas-specific reporting for both The Washington Post and The New York Times. Before joining the Tribune in 2010 as one of its founding reporters, Ramshaw spent six years at The Dallas Morning News, where she broke national stories about sexual abuse inside Texas’ youth lock-ups, reported from inside a West Texas polygamist compound and uncovered “fight clubs” inside state institutions for the disabled. The Texas APME named Ramshaw its 2008 star reporter of the year. In 2016, she was named to the board of the Pulitzer Prize. A native of Washington, D.C., and the product of two journalist parents, Ramshaw graduated from Northwestern University in 2003 with dual degrees in journalism and American history. She lives in Austin with her husband David Hartstein — an Emmy Award-winning film producer — and a daughter, Sophie. Read Articles by Emily Ramshaw
Charley Rejsek joined the #ttevents team to manage Studio 919 at The Texas Tribune. She previously worked for Barnes & Noble Booksellers for 19 years and was Volunteer + Logistics Coordinator for the 22nd Annual Texas Book Festival. A native Texan, she is from the hometown of Nolan Ryan. Go ‘Stros!
Alana Rocha joined the Tribune staff as the multimedia reporter after working eight years in television and radio news. She's covered politics for stations in Florida, Kansas and most recently in Austin as YNN's lead political reporter. Her work at the cable news outlet took her around the country reporting from the presidential campaign trail. A native of Tampa, Florida, Alana received bachelor's degrees in Journalism and Spanish from the University of Florida. Read Articles by Alana Rocha
Jay Root is a native of Liberty. He never knew any reporters growing up, and he has never taken a journalism class in his life. But somehow he got hooked on the news business. It all started when Root walked into the offices of The Daily Texan, his college newspaper, during his last year at the University of Texas in 1987. He couldn't resist the draw: it was the biggest collection of misfits ever assembled. After graduating, he took a job at a Houston chemical company and soon realized it wasn't for him. Root applied for an unpaid internship at the Houston Post in 1990, and it turned into a full-time job that same year. He has been a reporter ever since. Root has covered natural disasters, live music and Texas politics — not necessarily in that order. He was Austin bureau chief of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram for a dozen years, most of them good. He also covered politics and the Legislature for The Associated Press before joining the staff of the Tribune.Root is the author of “Oops! A Diary From The 2012 Campaign Trail,” an insider’s account of Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s dramatic collapse in the 2012 presidential race. The book was released in September, 2012.Read Articles by Jay Root
Alex Samuels is the community reporter for The Texas Tribune. While at the Tribune, Alex helped revamp the "Texplainer" series and also spearheaded our first-ever Facebook group, "This Is Your Texas," an online community for folks who want to engage in a constructive dialogue about policy challenges facing our state. She graduated in 2017 from the University of Texas at Austin's School of Journalism. She joined the Tribune in August 2016 as a newsletters fellow and later transitioned into a reporting fellow just in time for the 85th legislative session. Prior to coming to the Tribune, Alex worked for USA Today College as both a collegiate correspondent and their first-ever breaking news correspondent. She has also worked for the Daily Dot where she covered politics, race, and social issues. Read Articles by Alex Samuels
Debbie Seeger is The Texas Tribune’s Chief Financial Officer. A CPA for over 20 years, she’s spent of that time in non-profit leadership and management. Debbie began as an accountant for a large non-profit agency in Houston. In Corpus Christi, she worked in grants and federal relations for the local university before becoming the CEO of the Workforce Development Board. Debbie provided consulting services for eight years and then joined Corpus Christi ISD, first as a director in HR and later as the Director for Strategic Initiatives. Debbie is the daughter of a government and history teacher and spent hours on long drives responding to endless questions on Texas and US history and government. With her lifelong interest in government and politics, she became a Texas Tribune member long before joining the staff and has listened to virtually every TribCast.
Evan Smith is the CEO and co-founder of The Texas Tribune, a pioneering nonprofit, nonpartisan digital news organization whose deep coverage of Texas politics and public policy can be found at its website, texastribune.org, and in newspapers and on TV and radio stations across the state. Since its launch in 2009, the Tribune has won international acclaim and numerous honors, including a Peabody Award, sixteen national Edward R. Murrow Awards from the Radio Television Digital News Association and three general excellence awards from the Online News Association. Evan is also the host of “Overheard with Evan Smith,” a weekly half-hour interview program that airs on PBS stations around the country. Read Articles by Evan Smith
Woojae Julia Song
Woojae Julia Song is a multimedia fellow at the Texas Tribune. Julia is a senior at Northwestern University, where she studies journalism and Asian American Studies. She previously worked as a communications intern and translator for Asian Americans Advancing Justice-Chicago, a nonprofit, nonpartisan organization. She has reported and edited for her school's student-run quarterly magazine and covered climate justice for the Medill News Service. When not reporting, she is walking, photographing and learning about food systems (sometimes simultaneously). Read Articles by Woojae Julia Song
Arya Sundaram is a reporting fellow for The Texas Tribune. She is a junior at Yale University, where she studies American Studies with a concentration in ethnic studies and migrant communities. Before coming to the Tribune, Arya interned at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette as a Paul Block Journalism Fellow and the Argentine Council for International Relations. She serves as managing editor for The New Journal, the oldest longform magazine about Yale and New Haven. Read Articles by Arya Sundaram
Patrick Svitek is the primary political correspondent for The Texas Tribune, and editor of The Blast, the Tribune's subscription-only daily newsletter for political insiders. Patrick logged countless miles on the 2016 campaign trail, covering the many Texas angles of the momentous presidential race. He previously worked for the Houston Chronicle's Austin bureau. He graduated in 2014 from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism. He originally is from Fort Wayne, Indiana. Read Articles by Patrick Svitek
Aliyya Swaby started as the public education reporter in October 2016. She came to the Tribune from the hyperlocal nonprofit New Haven Independent, where she covered education, zoning and transit for two years. After graduating from Yale University in 2013, she spent a year freelance reporting in Panama on social issues affecting black Panamanian communities. A native New Yorker, Aliyya misses public transportation but is thrilled by the lack of snow. Read Articles by Aliyya Swaby
Alexa Ura covers demographics, voting rights and politics for The Texas Tribune, with a focus on the state's growing Hispanic population. She previously covered health care for the Tribune, where she started as an intern. She graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in 2013 with a journalism degree. Read Articles by Alexa Ura
Agnes Varnum joined the Tribune events team after five years in membership and marketing at the Austin Film Society. Before moving to Texas, Agnes held positions with Icarus Films, the Center for Social Media at American University and as a freelance writer for Indiewire.com and Documentary magazine. She has worked on the AFI Fest in LA, Independent Film Week in NYC, and she has served on programming committees for Silverdocs, Newport International Film Festival, AOL True Stories (now Snag Films) and SXSW.
Jacob Villanueva manages a creative team of designers and multimedia producers for the editorial and business departments of the organization. He brings his knowledge of over 15 years in design, photography and digital media production.
Edgar Walters is an investigative reporter for The Texas Tribune, where he started as an intern in 2013. He previously covered health and human services for the Tribune. Before that, he had a political reporting fellowship with the Berliner Zeitung, a daily newspaper in Berlin. He is a graduate of the Plan II Honors Program at The University of Texas at Austin, where he worked as an editor for The Daily Texan. When not in the newsroom or at the Capitol, he can be found on the volleyball court, standing 6'7" tall. Read Articles by Edgar Walters
Matthew Watkins is the breaking news editor for the Tribune. Before becoming an editor, he wrote about higher education and the business of college sports for the Tribune. Previously, he has covered local government at The Dallas Morning News and The Eagle in Bryan-College Station. A Texas native, Matthew grew up in Austin and has lived in Houston, Dallas and Bryan. He earned his bachelor's degree from Texas A&M University in 2008. Read Articles by Matthew Watkins
Jessica Weaver manages the Tribune's year-round events program — including all things Texas Tribune Festival — and oversees the intersection of the Tribune's editorial work, events and live engagement efforts. Before joining the Tribune in 2015, she worked in the Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies at the University of Texas at Austin, for South by Southwest and as a freelance copywriter. A Houston native, Jessica holds a history degree from the University of Texas at Austin.
Todd Wiseman previously worked at the Austin School of Film and Synthetic Pictures and interned for director Richard Linklater. At the Tribune, Todd has helped develop the Stump Interrupted series, which won a national Edward R. Murrow award. He also co-produced the award-winning documentary, "Beyond The Wall." A Fort Worth native, he graduated from the University of Southern California with a dual degree in film and English. Read Articles by Todd Wiseman
Emily Yount designs and develops features to help readers engage with The Texas Tribune's journalism, including a tool for identifying newsletters that fit your interests and preferences. Before joining the Tribune, she worked at The Washington Post and The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, and earned a bachelor's degree in journalism and Spanish from UNC-Chapel Hill. Read Articles by Emily Yount
Amanda Zamora leads the Tribune’s audience growth and engagement efforts. A native Texan, Amanda joined the Tribune in 2016 after spending 13 years on the East Coast working for news organizations including The Huffington Post Investigative Fund, The Washington Post and ProPublica. Amanda got her start as a cub reporter at the Austin American-Statesman after graduating from the University of Texas. She strives to leverage her storytelling, digital and audience skills to create journalism that actively engages people in the issues that matter most to them. When she’s not poring over spreadsheets, she’s (hopefully) dancing, cooking or traveling the world. Read Articles by Amanda Zamora