As the interim editor of the News Desk, Katie O'Brien works with reporters and producers to address the daily concerns and curiosities of Chicagoans through breaking news coverage, and by posing thoughtful and important questions intended to provide context for the conversations people are having with each other every day.
Katie's worked as a reporter and producer for the desk too: She covers a wide variety of issues--but to help simplify, WBEZ's All Things Considered anchor, Melba Lara, boils it down to "courts and sports." She first joined WBEZ in 2010 as an intern for Eight Forty-Eight, then WBEZ's weekday morning newsmagazine. She stayed on and became a full-time producer for the program.
When the station expanded its local programming to include The Afternoon Shift, hosted then by Steve Edwards, Katie served as one of its producers. She went on to direct the show during what's affectionately known as "the Kogan year," when Chicago Tribune columnist Rick Kogan served as the show's interim host -- and Katie's vocal muse. She's also produced and directed special election-night coverage for WBEZ. In 2013, she made the move over to the news desk to focus on reporting.
Her radio work has been honored with awards from the Illinois Associated Press, the Society of Professional Journalists, the Chicago Headline Club, Public Radio News Directors Inc. and the National Association of Black Journalists.
Prior to joining WBEZ, Katie spent time working at The Onion's A.V. Club. She also worked as a paralegal at Kirkland & Ellis LLP, in the firm's Intellectual Property and Litigation practices.
Katie hold a Masters of Science in Journalism from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism and a B.S. in Psychology and Art History from the University of Colorado.
Follow her on Twitter @katieobez.