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A native of Houston and a graduate of Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Service, Sonia Smith cut her teeth reporting on crime on the bayou for the Baton Rouge Advocate. She has also written for Slate, The New York Times Magazine, Roads & Kingdoms, and the Kyiv Post, and was a finalist for the 2008 Livingston Awards for Young Journalists for her reporting on sexual abuse at the Louisiana School for the Deaf. Her profile of leading climate scientist Katharine Hayhoe was included in the anthology The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2017.

Articles by Sonia Smith

Working with the Donald

Feb 23, 2017 By Sonia Smith

Last year, U.S. Hispanic Chamber of Commerce president Javier Palomarez was one of Trump’s harshest critics. Today, he’s informally advising the new president.

Ruffled Feathers

Aug 24, 2016 By Sonia Smith

When a teenage boy brazenly shot two endangered whooping cranes outside Beaumont, his act unleashed widespread anger and resulted in a quick arrest—and revealed just how difficult it can be to save a species. 

Katharine Hayhoe, photographed in Lubbock on March 31, 2016.
Unfriendly Climate

Apr 15, 2016 By Sonia Smith

Katharine Hayhoe has made it her life’s mission to proclaim the truth about climate change. Can she get the skeptics to listen?

For the Mouth Speaks

May 21, 2015 By Sonia Smith

Catherine Grove walked away from the Church of Wells last month. Now, she and the elders of the East Texas church explain why she left—and why she returned to the congregation that many call a cult.

True Crime
A Tree Is Known By Its Fruit

Dec 9, 2014 By Sonia Smith

When the 85-year-old matriarch of a prominent pecan-farming clan in San Saba was murdered, her death shook the town—and exposed how obsession and greed can fell a family from within.

The Long Road to Asylum

Aug 25, 2014 By Sonia Smith

Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials in El Paso stand accused of violating the confidentiality of dozens of Sikh asylum seekers detained in their facility.

Life at Sea

May 28, 2014 By Sonia Smith

Merchant Mariner John Dunaway shepherds the world's goods across the high seas, chronicling his journeys on Instagram. His stunning images are oceans apart from the average user's. Here are some of his favorites.

A Mayor of Many Worlds

May 1, 2014 By Sonia Smith

Born in Pakistan and raised in Abu Dhabi, the mayor of Paris, Texas, Dr. Arjumand Hashmi, tackles city business in between patient visits and holds the distinction of making the small East Texas city a medical destination for former Pakistani president Pervez Musharraf.