John Mecklin (journalist)

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John Mecklin is a journalist, novelist and editor, who specializes in narrative journalism. He was the editor-in-chief of Miller-McCune, a national public policy magazine named after its founder, Sara Miller McCune. Mecklin is currently the editor of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.

Career[edit]

After growing up in the Midwest, Mecklin enrolled at Indiana University, where he graduated with a B.A. in psychology. From January 1984 to June 1992, he worked as an investigative reporter for the Houston Post. He then matriculated at Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government, graduating in 1993 with a master degree in public administration. Subsequently, he assumed a variety of leadership positions in alternative journalism:

  • August 1993 to February 1997: Editor, Phoenix New Times (Phoenix, AZ).
  • February 1997 to October 2005: Editor, SF Weekly (San Francisco, CA).
  • December 2005 to March 2006: Consulting executive editor for the launch of Key West Magazine (Key West, FL).
  • October 2006 to November 2007: Editor-in-Chief, High Country News (Paonia, CO).
  • November 2007 to 2012: Editor-in-Chief, Miller-McCune (Santa Barbara, CA).[1]

Awards[edit]

Mecklin has received numerous honors, among others an Investigative Reporters and Editors award,[2] a John Bartlow Martin Award for Public Interest Magazine Journalism,[3] and an Association of Alternative Newsweeklies award for Investigative Reporting.[4] Under his guidance, journalists of the publications he managed won:

  • several George Polk Awards;[5]
  • the Sidney Hillman Award for reporting on social justice issues;[6]
  • several Association of Alternative Newsweeklies Awards.[7]
  • an Environmental Journalists Outstanding Explanatory Reporting Award;[8]
  • the Investigative Reporters and Editors Award;
  • the John Bartlow Martin Award for Public Interest Magazine Journalism, and
  • the University of Missouri's Lifestyle Journalism Award.

High Stakes Texas Bingo[edit]

During his tenure at SF Weekly, Mecklin began working on his roman à clef High Stakes Texas Bingo. In it, Mecklin satirizes Houston politics, as he experienced it during his time at the Houston Post. The novel, which involves semi-fictitious corrupt county judges, shipping magnates, and even vice president George H.W. Bush, focuses on the machinations of Jackie Belfast (real name: Terry O’Rourke), a Democrat and attorney who, after a stint in President Jimmy Carter's White House and a subsequent period in California, returned to Houston to face off with his rival, Bingo Satwell (real name: Harris County Commissioner "Boss" Bob Eckels).

Excerpts from the novel, which has attracted a sizable underground following, are available online.[9]

Personal life[edit]

John Mecklin is married to Nina Dunbar. They have two children.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2008-10-09. Retrieved 2009-12-21. >
  2. ^ http://www.ire.org/resourcecenter/contest/past/2001.html
  3. ^ http://www.medill.northwestern.edu/about/sponsoredawards.aspx?id=113091
  4. ^ http://aan.org/alternative/Aan/AwardsView?awardCategory=Investigative%20Reporting&year=2002 Archived 2010-06-15 at the Wayback Machine.
  5. ^ Lisa Davis, writing for SF Weekly, won it in 2001. Ray Ring, writing for High Country News, won it in 2006.
  6. ^ High Country News won the award in 2008.
  7. ^ Peter Byrne, writing for SF Weekly, won it in 2004 Archived 2010-06-15 at the Wayback Machine.. Lisa Davis, writing for SF Weekly, won it in the same year Archived 2010-06-15 at the Wayback Machine..
  8. ^ Valerie Brown, writing for Miller-McCune, won it in 2009.
  9. ^ The Texas Observer, August 10, 2007 Archived June 4, 2011, at the Wayback Machine.