The Association of Magazine Media

Texas Monthly Editor-in-Chief Announces Expansion of Political Team


CONTACT: Cathy S. Casey, Vice President                                                                                                                                 



Sweany to Lead Political Franchise

January 7, 2013—Austin, Texas—Building on the success of Texas Monthly’s political coverage over the past four decades, editor in chief Jake Silverstein announced today the formation of a new team that will provide legislative coverage and analysis for the magazine. Leading the team will be senior executive editor Brian D. Sweany. A native Texan, Sweany will be responsible for directing Texas Monthly’s political content both in print and online.

Sweany, who began his career at Texas Monthly in 1996 as an intern, became interested in politics at a young age when his father served as an elections judge in Collin County. He has written about a range of topics for the magazine, including the LBJ administration, the presidential campaign of George W. Bush and critical issues facing the Legislature. He will be working closely with senior executive editor Paul Burka, who has covered Texas politics for forty years and spearheaded the magazine’s biennial “Best and Worst Legislators” feature since 1975. Burka, who is known around the Capitol as the dean of Texas political writers, is the author of the popular and influential politics blog (, which will continue to play an important role in Texas Monthly’s online coverage.

Sweany and Burka will be joined by Erica Grieder, who recently joined Texas Monthly as a senior editor. Grieder was formerly the Southwest correspondent for the Economist and has been a contributor to the New Republic, the Atlantic, the New York Times and a guest commentator on MSNBC, National Public Radio, and Fox News Radio. Sweany, Burka, and Grieder will be responsible for covering the Eighty-third Legislature, which convenes on January 8. In addition, associate editor Sonia Smith will write and edit in a variety of capacities during the Eighty-third session. Smith formerly wrote for Slate and covered the Louisiana legislature before coming to Texas Monthly in 2010. She is also part of the team that launched the Texas Monthly Daily Post ( in December 2011.

When making this announcement, Silverstein said, “Politics is one of our biggest franchises and will be even more important as Texas continues to experience its growth and challenges. Our role, in the magazine and in every area of digital media, is to assess how well our elected officials are rising to meet those challenges and also to convey to readers, at least during session, the thrill of the legislative process. With this team, we’re positioned to do just that. I’m excited to be working with these journalists during this critical time.”

Texas Monthly has a circulation of 300,000 and is read by more than 2.5 million people each month—one out of every eight Texas adults. Texas Monthly is published by Emmis Publishing, L.P. Emmis owns and operates radio stations and other magazines.

Monday, January 14, 2013