John Young Vita

  • columnist at large
  • Adjunct English instructor, Front Range Community College, Fort Collins, Colo.
  • Contract editor, Scripps Treasure Coast Newspapers, Vero Beach, Fla.
  • jurist, Pulitzer Prizes, Columbia University, 2006, 2007
  • columnist, Texas School Business Magazine (2007-2010)
  • syndicated by Creators Syndicate, 1991-92
  • editor, Alamosa (Colo.) Valley Courier, 1978-1983

Notable Honors

  • Twice first place in National Society of Newspaper Columnists national contest, humor category
  • First place in commentary from Education Writers Association
  • Twice recipient of Planned Parenthood of Åmerica's national Maggie Award
  • 11 times Best of Cox in column writing or editorial writing
  • 8 times Texas APME first place in column writing or editorial writing
  • Silver Apple Award, Association of Texas Professional Educators

Work History

After 25 years as opinion editor of the Waco Tribune-Herald, I made a change in careers and climates when my family and I moved to Fort Collins, Colo., where I've branched out into teaching at the college level while I continue to write columns for a national audience.

My career in Texas has afforded me the opportunity to be read in newspapers across the country such as the Dayton Daily News, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Omaha World Herald Austin American-Statesman. From 1991 to 1992 my column was syndicated twice a week by Creators Syndicate, Los Angeles. I was carried in such newspapers as the Detroit Free Press, Chicago Life magazine and the Everett (Wash.) Herald.

From 1978 to 1983 I was editor of the Valley Courier in Alamosa, Colo., a five-day p.m., 6,000 circulation. Previously I served as news editor and sports editor.

I'm an adjunct in developmental writing at Front Range Community College at its Fort Collins and Longmont campuses after acquiring classroom experience teaching developmental writing at McLennan Community College in Waco.

Community involvement

Triggered by my participation in the Community Race Relations Coalition, I created the Waco History Project, of which I served as board chairman for four years. Our aim: to tell the community’s story from a multicultural perspective.

For four years was board member of the Waco City Council of PTAs as cultural arts chairman. With the PTA I devised a citywide pedestrian/bicycle safety program that continues, called “Walk This Way/Ride This Way.”

Books

  • Ghosts of Liberals Past (collection of political columns) Authorhouse, 2007
  • One Oar in the Brazos(collection of columns from 1984 to 1992)
    Tribune-Herald Publishing Co., 1992
  • Culture of Vultures (text with artwork of Vern Herschberger)
    Amram, Inc., 1995

Professional organizations

  • National Conference of Editorial Writers
  • National Society of Newspaper Columnists

Education

  • M.A., humanities (education/media studies) Prescott College, 2011
  • B.A, journalism, Colorado State University, 1975 (managing editor of The Rocky Mountain Collegian, the student newspaper)
  • American Press Institute conference on the editorial page
  • National Conference of Editorial Writers conferences on education, immigration and Latin America
  • Foundation for American Communications seminars on energy

Personal

  • born Dec. 31, 1952, Denver, Colo.
  • wife Becky
  • son Michael
  • son Robert

Contacting me: