Tanya Pampalone has more than 20 years experience living and working as a writer, columnist and editor for magazines, newspapers and online publications in the United States, the Czech Republic and South Africa. Half of that time has been spent in senior editorial management roles in strategic planning and new project management.
Currently she is a contributing writer for US News & World Report, edits non-fiction for Pan Macmillan and teaches creative writing for journalists and digital story-telling at the University of the Witwatersrand. She is also involved in media projects with Africa Check and the African Centre for Migration and Society at the University of the Witwatersrand, and is the editorial director of the Menell Media Exchange, Duke University’s annual media conference in Johannesburg.
Tanya was previously with The Conversation Africa, part of group of international news and analysis websites run by editors with academics as contributors, where she was the head of audience development and strategic partnerships. Prior to joining The Conversation, she was the executive editor of the Mail & Guardian. There, she oversaw longform journalism as well as select series and special editions, including the end of year and annual religion issues and flagship projects such as 200 Young South Africans and the South African Book of Women. Tanya also edited the the publication’s eBooks, including Nkandla: The Great Unravelling by journalist Phillip de Wet and co-edited, with Darryl Accone, Writing Invisibility: Conversations on the Inner City, a narrative journalism collection.
Between 2011 and 2014, Tanya was a visiting lecturer on media ethics and editorial independence the Sol Plaatjie Institute at Rhodes University in Grahamstown. In 2012, she won South Africa’s top journalism award, the Sikuvile, for creative writing and was a finalist in the feature writing category. She also was selected as the 2013 Menell Media Fellow at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy. Tanya was a judge for South Africa’s premier creative digital award, the Bookmarks 2016.
Tanya began her career as a freelance writer in Prague following the fall of communism, later becoming an assistant editor at the award-winning Buzz magazine in Los Angeles. She moved to Johannesburg in 1996 at the dawn of South Africa’s democracy, and was a freelance magazine writer. In 1999, Tanya went back to California, living in San Francisco where, after working the dotcom circuit and stringing for Agence France-Presse, she became an editor at the San Francisco Examiner. In 2005, Tanya went back to Johannesburg and was a freelance magazine writer until she was appointed managing editor of Maverick and Empire magazines. She has been a columnist for the Institute of Security Studies’ TheAfrican.org, Food and Home and the San Francisco Examiner. Tanya has a BA in journalism from San Diego State University and a masters in writing from the University of San Francisco.
Email: tanyapampalone @ gmail.com