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Three Years in the Non-Profit News Trenches

Texas Tribune CEO, editor-in-chief to discuss the future of non-profit news

EVANSTON, Ill. --- In 2009, Evan Smith left his position as the editor of Texas Monthly magazine and with a venture capitalist co-founded The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit news organization devoted to state government and politics. On Thursday, Nov. 1, The Texas Tribune CEO and editor-in-chief will talk about the future of non-profit news when he visits Northwestern University as part of the Crain Lecture Series.

Smith’s lecture, “Three Years in the Non-Profit News Trenches: What We’ve Learned,” will take place at 4 p.m. at the McCormick Tribune Center Forum, 1870 Campus Drive, on Northwestern’s Evanston campus. Presented by Northwestern’s Medill School of Journalism, Media, Integrated Marketing Communications, it is free and open to the public.

In its first year of operation, The Texas Tribune was awarded two national Edward R. Murrow awards from the Radio Television Digital News Association and a General Excellence Award from the Online News Association.

Under Smith’s editorial guidance, Texas Monthly was nominated for 15 National Magazine Awards -- the magazine industry’s equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize -- and twice won the National Magazine Award for General Excellence. He worked at Texas Monthly for 18 years.

For eight years, Smith also hosted “Texas Monthly Talks,” an Emmy Award-winning interview show that aired statewide on public broadcasting stations. Today he conducts in-depth interviews with politicians, public figures, actors, journalists and “anyone who’s at the center of things” on “Overheard with Evan Smith.” The show airs nationally on PBS stations.

Smith earned a master’s degree from Medill and was inducted into the Medill Hall of Achievement in 2006. A year earlier, he was named Austinite of the Year Under 40 in recognition of his contributions to Austin and the Lone Star State.

The Gertrude and G.D. Crain Jr. Lecture Series regularly brings journalists, newsmakers and others to Northwestern’s Evanston campus for discussions of current events and the news business. The lectures are made possible by a gift from Medill alumnus Rance Crain and his wife, Merrilee, and are named in honor of Crain’s parents, the founders of Crain Communications.

For further information, contact Jasmine Rangel at (847) 467-0726 or email

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