Gayle Reaves Named Editor at FW Weekly

Lee Newquist, the new owner of Fort Worth Weekly, announced this week that he has named Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Gayle Reaves as the paper’s editor.

Reaves replaces John Forsyth, who edited the Weekly for the first five and a half years of its existence. Forsyth, an author who worked for several major daily newspapers before coming to the Weekly, was let go as part of the transition when Newquist bought the paper from the New Times chain. Under Forsyth’s guidance, the Weekly won several honors for its investigative reporting.

Newquist, a 19-year veteran of the New Times organization, formerly served as publisher of the chain’s newsweeklies in Denver and Dallas. He was executive vice president of operations when he left New Times to buy the Fort Worth paper.

“I chose Gayle for this position based on her commitment to quality journalism, her strong news skills and her broad view of what’s needed on the editorial side for us to continue to grow this paper,” Newquist said.

Reaves, 49, was hired by the Weekly in March as its managing editor, after a 13-year stint at the Dallas Morning News as a reporter and editor.

“I look forward to carrying on the tradition of gutsy journalism that John Forsyth firmly established here,” she said.

Reaves has received some of journalism’s highest honors. She was a Pulitzer finalist in 1989, before winning the Pulitzer for International Reporting (as part of the Dallas Morning News team) in 1994 for the series “Violence Against Women: A Question of Human Rights.” With two other reporters, she also won a 1990 George Polk Award, recognizing courageous reporting, for an influential series on the South Texas drug war. In her last several years at the News, she reported extensively on radical Islamic terrorism.

While she has covered subjects ranging from mental retardation to major earthquakes to the breakup of Yugoslavia, Reaves has for years taken a special interest in women’s issues, both in the news pages and the newsroom. She created a women’s issues beat at the News and played key roles in the Pulitzer-winning series. Two other award-winning series were her brainchildren, one on the history and import of women’s suffrage, the other on domestic violence in Dallas County. She is a founder and former president of the Association for Women Journalists and past president of the Journalism and Women Symposium.

At the News, Reaves worked on the metro desk as a projects reporter, specialty writer and assistant city editor. Prior to that, she was an enterprise reporter at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, and Washington correspondent and state capitol bureau chief for the Austin American-Statesman. She spent five years at the now-defunct Austin Citizen and began her career at the Paris (TX) News. An honors graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, she is a Fort Worth resident and a Texas native.