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Articles by Editor in Chief Nikhil Swaminathan

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I’m thrilled to announce that Tristan Ahtone is joining Grist as editor-at-large. Tristan is an award-winning journalist who until recently was the editor-in-chief of the Texas Observer. There, he led a small but mighty team that delivered high-impact, investigative coverage on one of the most important states in the union. Tristan oversaw a stunning redesign of the publication’s magazine and website, increased the staff’s diversity by nearly half, and established Texas’ first Indigenous Affairs desk. 

Prior to joining the Observer, Tristan was an editor at High Country News, where he launched its award-winning Indigenous affairs vertical. In 2020, he led a team — that included Grist senior editor Katherine Lanpher — in publishing a years-long investigation into American colleges and universities built on land expropriated from Native American tribes. The project, “Land Grab Universities,” won a George Polk Award, an Investigative Reporters & Editors Award, a Sigma Award, and a Society of News Design Award. It also garnered a National Magazine Award nomination for Public Interest.

Tristan is a member of the Kiowa Tribe and is a past pres... Read more

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