Wendi C. Thomas is the founding editor and publisher of MLK50: Justice Through Journalism, a nonprofit newsroom in Memphis focused on poverty, power and public policy. As part of ProPublica’s 2019 Local Reporting Network, she investigated a nonprofit hospital’s aggressive debt collection practices, which led the hospital to erase at least $11.9 million in hospital debt for more than 5,300 defendants.
She’s worked for The (Memphis) Commercial Appeal, The Charlotte Observer, The (Nashville) Tennessean and The Indianapolis Star. Thomas was a 2016 fellow at the Nieman Foundation for Journalism at Harvard University.
She is the 2020 Selden Ring Award winner for investigative reporting and won first place in the Association of Health Care Journalists’ 2019 awards for business reporting. In 2019, Thomas received the National Association of Black Journalists’ Best Practices award. In 2018, she was named Journalist of the Year by Journalism and Women Symposium. She’s a graduate of Butler University and a proud product of public schools.