Pamela Colloff

Pamela Colloff's Profile Photo

Pamela Colloff joined Texas Monthly as a staff writer and worked her way up to an executive editor before leaving in 2017. Her work has also appeared in the New Yorker and has been anthologized in Best American Magazine Writing, Best American Crime Reporting, Best American Nonrequired Reading, and Next Wave: America’s New Generation of Great Literary Journalists.

Colloff was nominated for six National Magazine Awards during her time at Texas Monthly. She was nominated in 2001 for her article on school prayer, and then again in 2011 for her two-part series, “Innocence Lost” and “Innocence Found,” about wrongly convicted death row inmate Anthony Graves. One month after the publication of “Innocence Lost,” the Burleson County district attorney’s office dropped all charges against Graves and released him from jail, where he had been awaiting retrial. Colloff next received nominations for “Hannah and Andrew” and “The Innocent Man,” which earned a National Magazine Award for feature writing. In 2015, she was nominated for a National Magazine Award for “The Witness.” Her story “96 Minutes” served as the basis for the 2016 documentary Tower, which was short-listed for an Academy Award for best documentary film. Colloff also served as one of the film’s executive producers. She further explored the subject of the 1966 UT tower shooting in her story “The Reckoning,” which was a finalist for a 2017 National Magazine Award in feature writing.

Colloff holds a bachelor’s degree in English literature from Brown University and was raised in New York City. She lives in Austin with her husband and their two children.

192 Articles

News & Politics|
November 1, 2000

They Haven’t Got a Prayer

In the Gulf Coast town of Santa Fe, high school football games had always kicked off with a prayer, but in June the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the practice violated the separation of church and state. Now the issue—which has turned neighbor against neighbor and provoked some decidedly un-Christian

Web Exclusive|
November 1, 2000

Pray, Tell

Associate editor Pamela Colloff tells the story behind November's cover story, "They Haven't Got a Prayer."

July 31, 2000

Suddenly Susan

Susan Dell, the wife of Michael and the owner of a pricey couture salon that bears her name, is the perfect symbol of the new, mega-monied Austin. So what if its thunderstruck natives don't know quite what to make of her? Meet the Capital City's designing woman.

April 1, 2000

The Sins of the Father

For Tom Cherry, the precise place where loyalty to his dad ends and a larger obligation to society begins lies deep in the woods of East Texas, at the intersection of history and conscience, where the truth about a church bombing during the struggle for civil rights in the South

March 1, 2000


Is the Department of Public Safety racist? Lets look under the hoods.

True Crime|
November 1, 1999

The Outsiders

Amarillo is a city where conformity counts, so the death of a punk at the hands of a football player had more than a little symbolic significance there. So did the jury’s decision to keep the killer from going to jail.

July 31, 1999

The Blood of the Tigua

Officially, the issue tearing apart the West Texas' largest native American tribe is one of lineage. Who is and is not a member. But the real dispute is over money—earned in unimaginable amounts at the casino on their reservation and coveted by rival factions willing to risk everything.

May 31, 1999

Lynch Mob

Like the coffee and pie in the fictional town of Twin Peaks, the Arlington-based fanzine Wrapped in Plastic is damn fine.

Biz Science|
March 1, 1999

Blood and Money

On the strength of a simple if indelicate question—“Who’s the Father?”—Houston’s Caroline Caskey has made a big splash in biotech.

News & Politics|
February 1, 1999

The Getaway

There’s something romantic about a jailbreak, even when the escapee is a cold-blooded killer on death row. That’s why our feelings about Martin Gurule were more than a little complicated.

True Crime|
January 1, 1999

Teenage Wasteland

With its optimistically broad streets and oversized cantilevered homes, Plano is the suburban ideal taken to its extreme, and its exaggerated scale often gives rise to exaggerated problems. Heroin addiction is only the latest.

True Crime|
January 1, 1998

A Few Bad Boys

The slashing of a cadet’s throat at the Marine Military Academy in Harlingen is only the latest incident of violence at a venerable institution under not-so-friendly fire.

News & Politics|
December 1, 1997

The Wrong Man

George W. Bush pardoned convicted rapist Kevin Byrd after DNA evidence proved he was the wrong man. How did he get sent to prison in the first place?

The Culture|
December 31, 1969

Close Encounters of the Lone Star Kind

In 1973, when Palacios Mayor W. C. Jackson invited extraterrestrials to visit Texas (“No one has ever made those fellas welcome,” he told reporters), his hospitality came almost a century too late. Long before anyone had heard of Roswell, flying saucers were first spotted in Texas in 1878, according

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