Journalist and cultural critic Jamil Smith joins The Times as an essayist

Portrait of Jamil Smith
Jamil Smith was most recently a senior correspondent with Vox. He has a rich background across disciplines as a film and television producer, podcast host, opinion writer and public thinker.

The following announcement was sent on behalf of Assistant Managing Editor Ben Muessig:

I am excited to announce that Jamil Smith has joined The Times as an essayist.

Audiences turn to us for distinctive storytelling that introduces them to new ideas and contextualizes the world they inhabit. Essays are a powerful tool to do just that. With unique voice and perspective, they enlighten our readers and enrich our report. We plan to expand the newsroom’s output of essays and first-person writing, starting with Smith’s hiring.

As a journalist, cultural critic and producer for television and film, Smith’s work has made him one of America’s most incisive opinion writers and public thinkers. Most recently a senior correspondent with Vox, his work has ranged from reporting and writing essays to co-hosting the “Vox Conversations” podcast, which was named Best Podcast by a Publisher by Adweek in 2021. Earlier, he was a senior writer at Rolling Stone, where he covered national affairs and culture. He has produced Emmy Award-winning work with NFL Films and MSNBC, written for our Opinion pages as well as those of the New York Times and Washington Post, and gathered bylines in the New Republic, MTV News and Time, which ran his memorable look at the impact of the film “Black Panther” as a cover story.


Smith’s work has pushed policymakers to create a more just and equitable America and spotlighted those who are working for solutions. At The Times, he will continue to interrogate the problems facing California and the world at large.