Evan Smith is the CEO and editor in chief of the Texas Tribune. Previously he spent nearly 18 years at Texas Monthly, stepping down in August 2009 as the magazine’s president and editor in chief. He previously served as editor for more than eight years—only the third person to hold that title. On his watch, Texas Monthly was nominated for 16 National Magazine Awards, the magazine industry’s equivalent of the Pulitzer Prize, and twice was awarded the National Magazine Award for General Excellence. For eight years, he hosted the Lone Star Emmy Award-winning weekly interview program Texas Monthly Talks, which aired on PBS stations statewide. He currently hosts Overheard With Evan Smith, airing on PBS stations nationally. A New York native, he has a bachelor’s degree in public policy from Hamilton College and a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University.
“When his political people run the numbers, they see a different Texas, an emerging Texas. One that includes some of our more-conservative elements—God bless them, I respect them—but younger Texans as well. A Texas that is looking for change.”
“I always approach it as if I’m going to take the picture and, for whatever reason, that’s it. There won’t be another chance.”
“You have to have action, you have to have humor, and you have to have emotional situations. And you have no time to waste. You have to get it all in there economically.”
“When I was playing in college and the pros, most of the articles called me a ‘future Hall of Famer.’ So you get that idea in your head. You feel secure and confident that you’ll be elected to the Hall of Fame, but it’s different when it actually happens.”
“‘LBJ’s war’ was not a war he had sought. It was a war he had inherited. It was a war he was trying desperately to get out of.”
“Do I blame a single individual? Do I blame the nation for the mistakes we made that led us to Abu Ghraib and the abuses that occurred as a result of the actions we took? Do I blame the military or the Department of Defense for trying to contain this extremely embarrassing period in our history? I think when you look at it, what happened to me is that I got caught in a perfect storm.”
“If a shoe factory closes in Seattle, you can’t move it to San Antonio and have it competing there within a couple of hours, but with airplanes you can. I’ve always said that I want us to strike with the speed and alacrity of a puma.”