Tony Merevick '12
Journalist Tony Merevick builds on a long background in LGBT news coverage at his New York writing jobs.
Illinois native Tony Merevick ignited his career while studying at Columbia College Chicago. While juggling a full course load, he reported for Chicago Free Press and Gay Chicago Magazine, founded the Chicago Phoenix, and interned at O, the Oprah Magazine in New York City. In fall 2013, Merevick’s hard work paid off when New York-based social news and entertainment company BuzzFeed hired him as an LGBT breaking news reporter. Today, he works in New York City as a news editor at Thrillist New York, a men's lifestyle website.
“All the journalism teachers I studied under were instrumental in helping me succeed,” says Merevick. He specifically cites his Reporting and Writing II professor Nancy Traver, who “really empowered me to look at her six-hour course and think of it more as a job.”
This professional outlook is what drove Merevick to pursue opportunities outside Columbia as an online editor for Chicago Free Press, then as a columnist and news reporter for Gay Chicago Magazine. “Columbia gave me the tools and provided me with the opportunity to [succeed].”
When both publications folded within the span of two years, Merevick seized the opportunity to provide LGBT coverage to Chicago by co-founding the Chicago Phoenix. Today, the Chicago Phoenix is one of the most-read digital LGBT publications in the Midwest.
In addition to working at Chicago Free Press and Gay Chicago Magazine, Meverick scored a highly-sought-after, paid summer internship at O, the Oprah Magazine in New York City, where he helped to develop the app version of the magazine.
Jumping to BuzzFeed
When BuzzFeed announced it was hiring journalists to bolster its LGBT coverage, Merevick jumped at the chance to move back to New York City. “[BuzzFeed is] such an incredible, innovative platform,” he says. “I couldn’t turn that down.”
At BuzzFeed, Merevick’s career took off. On the eve of the signing of Illinois’ marriage equality legislation, Meverick interviewed Gov. Pat Quinn and witnessed the historic signing ceremony at UIC Pavilion. Also at Buzzfeed, Merevick wrote “A Year Later, ‘Nothing’ Has Changed Since Transgender Woman Islan Nettles Was Killed." That story was nominated for the Outstanding Digital Journalism category of the 2015 GLAAD Awards.
After working at Buzzfeed from Sept. 2013 to Oct. 2014, Merevick moved on to a news editor position at Thrillist New York.
Adapted from DEMO magazine, issue 20