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The Texas Tribune

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Title: The Texas Tribune  
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The Texas Tribune

The Texas Tribune
Type Nonprofit
Format Web
Founder(s) John Thornton
Evan Smith
Ross Ramsey
Editor Emily Ramshaw
Managing editor, design Jacob Villanueva
Founded 2009
Political alignment Nonpartisan
Headquarters 823 Congress
Austin, Texas USA
OCLC number 465271495
Website .org.texastribunewww

The Texas Tribune is a nonprofit[1] media organization in Texas in the United States. Headquartered in downtown Austin, Texas, it is devoted to increasing knowledge and participation in state government and public policy. It aims to promote civic engagement through original, explanatory journalism and public events.[2] Its website and content in various delivery platforms serves as an alternative news source for Texas, with a goal of supplementing mainstream media sources.

The Texas Tribune, like Voice of San Diego and MinnPost before it, is part of a trend toward nonprofit journalism with an all-digital platform.[3]

In addition to journalism posted online at its site,[4][5] and in the pages and on the sites of its distribution partners,[6] the Tribune hosts on-the-record, open-to-the-public events: conversation series featuring elected officials and other newsmakers, conferences on major topics of interest to every Texan, a college tour, and the like.


The foundation was created in the summer of 2009 by venture capitalist John Thornton[7] and veteran journalists [10]

In Micro 101, we learn that such "public goods" as clean air and national defense will not be produced in sufficient supply exclusively by market forces. Allow for the sake of argument that what I'll call "capital J" Journalism – journalism that takes on serious, complex issues and puts them in the context of how citizens interact with their government – is such a good.

Thornton and his wife, Julie, contributed the initial seed money to fund the organization's nascent operations and began to raise money from around the state and around the country from individuals, corporations, and foundations. He hired Smith, the longtime editor of Slate, started writing for the Tribune in January 2010.

Thornton raised more than US $2 million before the project was made public in July 2009. He invested $1 million of his personal money to the organization. By the November 2009 launch, the Tribune raised $3.6 million from more than 1,000 individual donors and at least fifty corporate sponsors.[15]

Financier T. Boone Pickens has donated $150,000. Foundations have also donated around $1.1 million, including a total of $750,000 in grants from the Houston Endowment and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Corporate sponsorships have brought in the funds as well. Most of the 68 corporate sponsors made a $2,500 commitment as co-founders of the publication, and it seems that this figure has not grown substantially since the launch. "In the coming months, we intend to become far more sophisticated in the way we market corporate sponsorships of both our site and our events series, TribLive," Thornton wrote.[16]

The Texas Tribune has been actively developing an open source publishing platform along with the Armstrong, was funded through a $975,000 grant from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. It is based on technology the Tribune has been using since 2009.[17]


Current staff includes Evan Smith CEO and Editor-in-Chief, Tim Griggs, Publisher and COO, Terry Quinn, Chief Development Officer, Ayan Mittra, Managing Editor, Amanda Krauss (Director of Technology), Rodney Gibbs, Chief Innovation Officer, April Hinkle, Chief Revenue Officer, Evan Smith was Texas Monthly's editor between 2000 and 2008.[18]

Brian Thevenot, a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner who was formerly special projects editor for The Times Picayune of New Orleans, joined the staff in October 2009. He has since left the Tribune, and is now business editor at the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Elise Hu and Matt Stiles departed in 2011 to join NPR in Washington, DC. In spring of 2011, the Tribune announced the hiring of the twice named AP Staff Writer of the Year, Jay Root, formerly of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.[19]

External links

  • The Texas Tribune
  • Encyclo: an encyclopedia of the future of news


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  2. ^ : Web Start-Up Has Its Eye on TexasThe New York Times
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  5. ^ : Texas Tribune set as state watchdogSan Antonio Express-News
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