Tanya Pampalone has more than 20 years of journalism experience, working in digital and legacy publications in the United States, the Czech Republic and South Africa.
She is currently the managing editor of the Global Investigative Journalism Network, a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit which supports investigative journalists. From her base in Johannesburg, Tanya is responsible for GIJN’s far-flung editorial team, covering sustainability and innovation in journalism, as well as case studies and tools and techniques for investigative journalists, in seven languages and eight regions around the world.
Tanya is co-editor of I Want To Go Home Forever: Stories of Becoming and Belonging in South Africa’s Great Metropolis (Wits Press, 2018), with international migration expert Loren Landau. She was a contributor to Southern African Muckraking: 150 Years of Investigative Journalism Which Has Shaped the Region (Jacana, 2018) and Unbias the News: Why Diversity Matters for Journalism (Hostwriter, 2019).
Tanya speaks regularly on issues spanning journalism futures, migration, disinformation, longform writing and new storytelling forms. She’ll be chairing two panels — one on storytelling and another on editing the investigative story — at the Global Investigative Journalism Conference (Hamburg, 2019), and will be talking journalistic collaborations with academia, civil society and the arts at the African Investigative Journalism Conference (Johannesburg, 2019). Also in 2019, Tanya spoke about migration issues at the Franschhoek Literary Festival, weighed in on the intersection of fact-checking and investigative journalism at GlobalFact6 in Cape Town and chaired a panel on innovation at the World Journalism Education Conference in Paris.
Tanya is the former the executive editor of South Africa’s Mail & Guardian, where she oversaw special editions and in-depth journalism projects, including early forays into digital products such as HTML5 and eBooks, including Nkandla: The Great Unravelling and Writing Invisibility: Conversations on the Inner City. Tanya was also the head of audience development and strategic partnerships at The Conversation Africa, a regional arm of the global network, during its start-up phase.
Prior to joining GIJN, Tanya was a contributing writer to US News & World Report, lectured on creative writing for journalists and digital storytelling at the University of the Witwatersrand and edited nonfiction titles for Pan Macmillan South Africa.
In her role at GIJN, she has directed the newsrooms of the Global Investigative Journalism Conference in Johannesburg in 2017 and in Hamburg in 2019, and the Uncovering Asia conference in Seoul in 2018. She was also the editorial director of Duke University’s annual Menell Media Exchange from 2014 to 2017.
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 and was a judge for South Africa’s premier creative digital award, the Bookmarks, in 2016 and 2017.
Tanya began her career as a freelance writer in Prague following the fall of communism, later becoming an assistant editor the award-winning magazine, Buzz: The Talk of Los Angeles. She moved to Johannesburg in 1996 at the dawn of South Africa’s democracy, working as 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 writer until she was appointed managing editor of sister magazines Maverick and Empire, which became the popular online publication Daily Maverick.
Tanya holds a BA in journalism from San Diego State University and an MA in writing from the University of San Francisco.
Email: tanyapampalone @ gmail.com