Journalist, author McKenna to be Science Writer in Residence

April 8, 2013 By Terry Devitt

Independent journalist and author Maryn McKenna has been named the Spring 2013 UW–Madison Science Writer in Residence.

McKenna blogs for Wired and is a contributing editor and columnist for Scientific American. She is a frequent contributor to SELF, Nature, the Guardian and Her work has also appeared in the Washington Post, Newsweek and the Los Angeles Times, among others. Her most recent book is “Superbug: The Fatal Menace of MRSA.”

Photo: Maryn McKenna


Her work as a journalist has taken McKenna to remote corners of the world to report past and emerging issues in health and science. She has reported from field hospitals in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina, from the west coast of Thailand after a devastating tsunami, and from a graveyard above the Arctic Circle where victims of the 1918 avian flu pandemic are interred. McKenna’s work is highly regarded by her peers and has garnered numerous awards.

McKenna will be on campus the week of April 14, and will spend time speaking in classes and working with students and faculty interested in science and health journalism. On Tuesday, April 16 at 4 p.m. at Union South, she will give a free public lecture entitled “Maybe Losing the Miracle: Agriculture, the FDA, and the Controversy Over Farm Antibiotics.”

The UW–Madison Science Writer in Residence Program, now in its 27th year, seeks to bring some of the nation’s top science writers to Wisconsin as a resource for the university community and others. It was established with support from the Brittingham Trust and continues with support from the UW Foundation. Past visiting writers include three whose work subsequently earned them the Pulitzer Prize.

The program is sponsored by the School of Journalism and Mass Communication and University Communications and Marketing.