Times Columnist Steve Lopez Wins 2021 Nyhan Prize for Political Journalism

Los Angeles Times columnist Steve Lopez
(Los Angeles Times)

The Nyhan Prize honors a journalist who covers politics and social policy in the public interest. A virtual event honoring Steve Lopez will be held on Monday, April 18.


Los Angeles Times Columnist Steve Lopez has won the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy’s 2021 Nyhan Prize in Political Journalism.

The Nyhan Prize honors a political journalist who covers politics and social policy in the public interest, and embodies longtime Boston Globe columnist and former Joan Shorenstein Fellow David Nyhan’s style of journalism that speaks to, and for, everyone.

“Distortion and disinformation in our culture constitutes a threat to democracy itself,” said Lopez. “That makes it all the more critical for the L.A. Times to continue its mission of clear-eyed scrutiny of public officials and the human impact of public policy.” He added that the Nyhan Prize is welcome recognition that he shares with his colleagues at The Times.


Lopez is a California native who has been an L.A. Times columnist since 2001. He has won more than a dozen national journalism awards for his reporting and column writing at seven newspapers and four news magazines, and is a four-time Pulitzer finalist for commentary – in 2012, for his columns on elder care; in 2016, for his columns on income inequality in California; in 2018, for his columns on housing and homelessness; and in 2020, for purposeful pieces about rising homelessness in Los Angeles, which amplified calls for government action to deal with a long-visible public crisis.

Lopez is also the author of three novels, two collections of columns and the non-fiction book “The Soloist,” which was a Los Angeles Times and New York Times best-seller and winner of the PEN USA Literary Award for Non-Fiction. Lopez’s television reporting for public station KCET has won three local news Emmys, three Golden Mike awards and a share of the Columbia University DuPont Award.

A virtual event honoring Lopez will be held on Monday, April 18 at 9 a.m. PT. David Von Drehle, Washington Post columnist and 2018 Nyhan Prize winner, will moderate a conversation with Lopez about his career and the importance of political journalism that centers on the interests of everyday people. Register here.

For more information about the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy and the Nyhan Prize in Political Journalism, visit