Lau­ra S. Wash­ing­ton, an In These Times con­tribut­ing edi­tor, is a colum­nist for the Chica­go Sun-Times and polit­i­cal ana­lyst for ABC 7‑Chicago.

Formerly the Ida B. Wells-Barnett University Professor at DePaul University in Chicago, Laura S. Washington is a multimedia journalist specializing in media-related issues, African-American affairs, local and national politics, race and racism, and social justice.

Her column has appeared in the Sun-Times since 2001. From May 2006 to December 2008 she wrote a column, “Droppin’ a Dime,” for In These Times. She is a frequent commentator on “News and Notes” on National Public Radio and a contributor to Chicago Public Radio’s “848.”  Washington has been widely featured in reports and programs on politics and racial and urban issues in the national media, including Time and Newsweek magazines, The New York Times, NBC Nightly News and The Lehrer News Hour. She speaks regularly to local and national audiences.

Washington brings more than two decades of diverse experiences in print and broadcast journalism, urban affairs and social justice issues. From 1990 to 2001, Washington edited The Chicago Reporter, a nationally recognized investigative monthly specializing in racial issues and urban affairs. Newsweek named Washington one of the nation’s “100 People to Watch” in the 21st Century.  The magazine said that “her style of investigative journalism has made (the Reporter) a powerful and award-winning voice.”

In 1985 Washington was appointed deputy press secretary to Mayor Harold Washington, Chicago’s first black mayor.  From 1987 to 1990 she was a producer for the investigative unit at CBS-2/Chicago. In 1990 Washington returned to The Chicago Reporter and served as its editor and publisher from 1994 through 2001.  She has written for the Chicago Tribune, specializing in issues of race, poverty and urban affairs. She was appointed to the Ida B. Wells-Barnett Chair at DePaul in June 2003.

Washington earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in journalism from Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, where she has also taught and lectured.

She has been honored with more than two dozen local and national awards for her work, including two Chicago Emmys, the Peter Lisagor Award, the Studs Terkel Award for Community Journalism and the Ohio State Award for broadcast journalism. She has also received the Racial Justice Award from the YWCA of Metropolitan Chicago, and is a founding inductee to the Medill School of Journalism Hall of Achievement and the 2002 Northwestern University Alumnae Award. In 1999 The Chicago Community Trust awarded her a Community Service Fellowship, for “exemplary service, commitment and leadership in individuals from the nonprofit sector.”

She is a member of the Chicago and National associations of black journalists and serves on the board of The Field Museum. She also serves on the board of The Donors Forum of Chicago.

Feature
On the Road Against Citizens United
Jim Hightower discusses the Keystone pipeline, the Koch brothers and campaign financing.
Feature
Obama’s Chicago: A Pre-NATO Summit Primer
Why the president's decision to 'come home in Chicago' nearly 30 years ago was so shrewd.
Viewpoint
The Paradox of Our Media Age—and What to Do About It
Dispatch
Chicago’s Left Blows Its Big Chance
Rahm Emanuel appears to have made the best of a once-in-a-generation opportunity.
Dispatch
What Has Barack Obama Done for Black America?
Tavis Smiley gathers prominent black leaders, intellectuals and activists to take the president to task.
Viewpoint
Obama Needs a Black Agenda
Viewpoint
Honest Abe and Honest Obe
Feature
The Whole World Was Watching
40 years ago this week, Chicago police battled protesters at the DNC. Two '60s radicals remember the madness, and look to Denver for change
Viewpoint
Gun-toters in La-La Land
Viewpoint
The Great Election Robbery of 2008?
Viewpoint
Obama Not Feelin’ the Love from Smiley
Viewpoint
Who Would Ida B. Wells Vote For?
Viewpoint
The Nadir of Nader
Viewpoint
Missing: Minorities in Media
Viewpoint
Fat Kids, Fat Profits
Viewpoint
McGovern Still on the Antiwar Path
The retired senator and former ambassador to the United Nations is stumping for a book he co-wrote with foreign policy analyst William R. Polk called Out of Iraq: A Practical Plan for Withdrawal Now while buttonholing dozens of members of Congress and urging our immediate withdrawal from Iraq
Viewpoint
Come on People! Bill Cosby is Right
Cosby's critics excoriated him for delivering his rant from an elitist ivory tower without offering solutions, arguing that the black poor are the helpless victims of white supremacy and institutional racism
Viewpoint
Katrina Through Rose-Colored Glasses
Race does matter in the caustic caldron of the post-Katrina era--the world still perceives us as "refugees"--permanently scarred victims to be forever adrift in tragedy
Viewpoint
Let’s Pry Open Those Cold, Dead Hands
To defeat the gun lobby, gun-control activists need to get out of late-night local cable and embrace the Internet
Viewpoint
The Crafting of Obama
When Barack Obama launched his presidential bid, he decided to build a staircase, not merely a platform, thereby differing with most African-American presidential aspirants
Viewpoint
Bloomberg Could Tie Centrists in Knots
If the New York mayor runs, he will stymie the ability of the Democratic nominee to play both sides of the fence on issues like guns, gay rights, immigration and choice
Viewpoint
A GLBT Center of Their Own
A combination of public and private funds, Chicago's new GLBT community center enjoys broad political support and is the first of its kind in the country
Feature
Curiosity and a Cat Named Studs
Legendary Chicago writer Studs Terkel celebrates 95 years on May 16, and a new book this fall
Viewpoint
The United States of Amnesia
Viewpoint
Obamas Base: Broader Than Black
Viewpoint
Cultivating the Media Garden
Viewpoint
Art Basel Miami Beach: A Whitewash
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The Second Clinton Ascendancy
Viewpoint
Make Democrats Earn Black Votes
The Democratic Party has been taking Black votes for granted for decades.
Viewpoint
Year of the Black Candidate
Many Black candidates sought and won office in the 2006 takeover by the Democrats.
Viewpoint
Debunking the 60s with Ayers and Dohrn
Bernardine Dohrn and Bill Ayers, activiists leaders in SDS in the '60's, say a new movement must be built.
Viewpoint
Go On, Amend Away
Should flag burning be outlawed by Constitutional amendment?
Viewpoint
Overthrow, Over and Over
Viewpoint
Democrats Gear Up on the Ground
Viewpoint
Solidarity from Barrio to Barbershop
Viewpoint
A Sit-Down with Studs
Viewpoint
Black Leadership Wanted
Supplementary
Unapologetic Radical