Rachel Osier Lindley Named 2024 PMJA Editor of the Year

Posted By: Christine Paige Diers Awards,

Rachel Osier Lindley, Senior Editor for The Texas Newsroom, has been honored as the 2024 Editor of the Year by the Public Media Journalists Association (PMJA). This prestigious recognition comes in the wake of Lindley's exceptional contributions to public media, particularly during the transformative year of 2023. With her dedication to collaborative journalism and her outstanding editorial skills, Lindley has left an indelible mark on the field. 

Rachel Osier Lindley serves as the statewide editor of The Texas Newsroom, orchestrating collaborative efforts among dozens of journalists, ensuring that their stories reach statewide audiences and connect communities across Texas. Rachel was nominated for the Editor of the Year award by Texas Newsroom Statewide Managing Editor Corrie MacLaggan who said, “Rachel arrives at work each day brimming with enthusiasm – for the news, for public media, for collaboration and for her colleagues.” 

Among her notable achievements in 2023, Lindley spearheaded the comprehensive coverage of the Texas legislative session and four special sessions, demonstrating her adeptness at coordinating reporters across diverse regions. She also edited impactful stories such as an exploration of the repercussions of anti-trans laws on families and the enlightening series "Golden Pennies," which delved into the disparities in school funding. 

The Sugar Land Podcast: A Testament to Excellence:  

Perhaps one of Lindley's most remarkable feats was her editorial work on the Sugar Land podcast. This podcast, which investigated the unearthing of a forgotten cemetery in Sugar Land, Texas, shed light on a dark chapter in history and prompted crucial conversations about remembrance and justice. While the podcast was spearheaded by a talented team, they had no previous audio experience. Lindley transformed their reporting into a captivating narrative, garnering praise from listeners and earning national recognition with a Gracie Award. 

Testimonials Speak Volumes:  

Lindley's impact extends beyond her accomplishments; it's also evident in the admiration and respect she commands from her colleagues. One former Texas Newsroom reporter, Sergio Martínez-Beltrán (now with NPR), commends Lindley’s unparalleled understanding of radio. “Working with Rachel has been one of the best things that has happened to my career. She understands radio like no one else. She has a great ear and has made my stories a thousand times better.” Still, Martínez-Beltrán says Rachel’s empathy is her best quality as an editor. Camille Phillips, a reporter at Texas Public Radio in San Antonio also sings her praises. “Rachel is one of the best editors I’ve ever had the pleasure of working with — and I’ve been in public radio for more than a decade and worked at four stations. She has an excellent ear for when parts of my scripts get too in the weeds, and great suggestions for what to cut, what to reword, and how to shift the structure of the script so it captures listeners right away and keeps them following along.”  

Commitment to the Public Media System: 

Rachel Osier Lindley's journey in public media has been marked by dedication, innovation, and a steadfast commitment to excellence. Prior to her time as the statewide editor for The Texas Newsroom, she served as news director at WBHM in Birmingham, AL and at Marfa Public Radio in Marfa, TX. Rachel holds an MBA from Sul Ross State University in Alpine Texas. She has served as a PMJA Board Member. As a Senior Editor for The Texas Newsroom, she continues to foster collaboration and mentorship, leaving an indelible impact on the journalists she works with. Her visionary leadership, editorial acumen, and unwavering passion for storytelling serve as an inspiration to colleagues and audiences alike, reaffirming the vital role of journalism in our society.