Editor: Paul Baumann Associate Editors: Grant Gallicho, Matthew Boudway, Mollie Wilson O’Reilly Print & Digital Production: Tiina Aleman Digital Editor: Dominic Preziosi Copy Editor: Susanne Washburn Poetry: Rosemary Deen Screen: Richard Alleva, Rand Richards Cooper Stage/Media: Celia Wren Columnists: E. J. Dionne Jr., John Garvey, Cathleen Kaveny, Jo McGowan, Charles R. Morris, William Pfaff Business Manager: James Hannan Digital Media & Marketing Manager: KeriLee Horan Advertising: Regan Pickett and John Rendleman Publisher: Thomas Baker
Editor Paul Baumann came to Commonweal in 1990 and was appointed editor in 2003. He was educated at Wesleyan University and Yale Divinity School. His writing has appeared in The New York Times, the Washington Monthly, the Columbia Journalism Review, the Chicago Tribune, and other publications. Before coming to Commonweal, he worked as a newspaper editorial writer and reporter. With Patrick Jordan, he is the editor of Commonweal Confronts the Century: Liberal Convictions, Catholic Tradition - Celebrating Seventy-Five Years from the Pages of Commonweal (Touchstone). He and his wife, Vivian Segall, a teacher, have three children and live in Connecticut.
Associate Editor Grant Gallicho has been working at Commonweal since 2000. His work has appeared in America, the National Catholic Reporter, the Tablet of London, El Ciervo of Spain, the New York Observer, Religion News Service, and elsewhere. He was educated at Fordham University and the University of Chicago. He lives in Brooklyn. You can follow him on Google+ and Twitter.
Associate Editor Matthew Boudway joined the Commonweal staff in 2006. He grew up in Arizona and was educated at Yale, Oxford, and Boston University. He has worked as a farmhand, a bookseller, and an English teacher in France, and was for two years an editor at First Things. He lives in Harlem.
Associate Editor Mollie Wilson O’Reilly joined the Commonweal staff in 2008. She is a graduate of Yale and a native of Scranton, Pennsylvania. Before coming to Commonweal, Mollie worked in the books department of Theatre Communications Group. Her writing has been published in American Theatre and the Village Voice and online at the Guardian, Nextbook, and TheBigJewel.com. She lives in Westchester with her husband, son, and turtle.
Production Editor Tiina Aleman has done print and digital production for Commonweal since 1997. Aside from her production duties at the magazine, she writes poetry and does translation and translation editing from Estonian. Her work has been published is various literary magazine including The Iowa Review. She is married to Tony Iannotti. They share their Jersey City house with two cats.
Digital Editor Dominic Preziosi joined Commonweal in May 2012. He has held senior editorial positions with McGraw-Hill, Forbes, and CMP/United Business Media, and has published fiction, articles, and essays in The Brooklyn Review, Descant, Front Porch, ItalianAmericana, New Jersey Spotlight, The Writer Magazine, and elsewhere. He was educated at Fordham University, Brooklyn College, and the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. Dominic lives in Brooklyn with his wife, son, and daughter.
Digital Media & Marketing Manager KeriLee Horan joined the Commonweal staff in August 2011. She attended Fairfield University for undergraduate, followed by New York University where she received her Masters in Print and Digital Publishing. She lives on the Upper West Side.
Copy Editor Susanne Washburn has served Commonweal since 1999. Prior to that she spent thirty-five years on Time, the last stretch as a senior reporter. Sue studied literature at Albertus Magnus College, and has an MA from New York University. She writes regularly for the regional quarterly Stratton, and contributes occasionally to Commonweal, the National Catholic Reporter, and the American Catholic. With her lawyer husband, Larry Washburn, she lives in Dorset, Vermont; they have three adult children and two grandchildren.
Editorial Assistant Ryan O'Connell came to Commonweal as an intern in the Fall of 2012 before becoming editorial assistant in January of 2013. He received a BA in English and Theology from Fordham University. Following graduation, he went on to serve a year with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in Bethel, Alaska prior to joining the Commonweal staff. He lives on Long Island.
Poetry Editor Rosemary Deen came to Commonweal in 1979. She first appeared as a Commonweal reviewer in 1957. Educated at Aquinas College in Michigan and at the Universities of Michigan and Chicago, she has taught literature and writing most of her adult life, most recently at Queens College. The poet Marie Ponsot and she developed a new approach to the teaching of writing, and together they wrote two books about it; one, Beat Not the Poor Desk, won a national award. She has published poems and articles on poets, and her most recent publication is a book of essays, Naming the Light (1997).
Film Critic Richard Alleva holds his MFA from Catholic University’s drama department. He worked as an actor with the National Players, touring the USA and Germany in productions of Shakespeare and Moliere. After numerous other roles in other theater companies, he became the film critic for Crisis Magazine in 1985, decamping for Commonweal in 1990, where he now shares the movie reviewing post with Rand Cooper. Film director Peter Bogdanovich selected Alleva’s essay,"I Would Toss Myself Aside" (first published in Image magazine) for the 1999 edition of Best American Movie Writing. His review of Schindler’s List concluded the anthology, Commonweal Confronts the Century. He and his wife Anne, a music teacher and choir director, live in Connecticut with their daughter Gaby, who has introduced her father to the work of the supreme cinema artiste, Hilary Duff.
Film Critic Rand Richards Cooper has been a film reviewer, book reviewer, and essayist for Commonweal for over a decade. He is the author of two works of fiction, The Last to Go (HBJ) and Big As Life (The Dial Press) and has taught at Amherst and Emerson colleges. An intrepid travel writer, Cooper is a contributing editor for Bon Appétit and winner of a 2002 Lowell Thomas Gold Medal award from the Society of American Travel Writers. He also writes frequently for the Hartford Courant’s Northeast Magazine, where his cover feature on three distinguished Connecticut professors won a first-prize award from the Education Writers Association of America. Rand and his wife, Molly, live in Hartford, Connecticut with their beloved English bulldog, Bert.
Stage/Media Critic Celia Wren has been a critic at Commonweal since 1996. She is the managing editor of American Theatre, a monthly magazine covering theatre across the country. Her articles about the arts and culture have appeared in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the Village Voice, Newsday, the Boston Globe, the New York Observer, Talk, Stagebill, American Theatre, Broadway.com, and South Africa’s Weekly Mail. She holds a B.A. in literature from Harvard University and an M.A. in creative writing from Johns Hopkins University. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband, William.
Former Editors and Staff Members
Daniel Callahan started at Commonweal in 1961 and left the magazine as executive editor in 1968. Callahan published his first book, The Mind of a Catholic Layman, in 1963. His most recent book, The Troubled Dream of Life: In Search of a Peaceful Death, appeared in 1993. Callahan was co-founder and long-time president of the Hastings Center, the nation’s first bioethics think-tank. He is currently the center’s director of international programs. His wife Sidney, a professor of psychology and the author of many books herself, was a columnist for Commonweal.
John Cogley (1916-76), who wrote a column for the magazine from 1949 to 1964, also served as feature editor (1949-1952) and executive editor (1952-1954). After leaving the magazine to work for Robert Hutchins’s Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions, he became religion editor of the New York Times in 1965, and then editor of Center Magazine. He was the author of Religion in a Secular Age (1968) and Catholic America (1973).
Daria Donnelly (1959-2004) was an associate editor from 2000 to 2002, and associate editor (at large) and co-editor of the poetry section from 2002 to 2004. A native of Pittsburgh, she received her elementary and secondary education from Mercy nuns. After majoring in religion at Wesleyan University, Donnelly taught in an inner-city high school, cooked for a Catholic Worker house in Rochester, NY, and spent a year studying (Hebrew and religion), traveling, and dog-watching in Jerusalem. A love of literature and desire to integrate that with religious studies led her to a PhD in English and American Literature from Brandeis University: she studied nineteenth-century American poetry and theodicy under the MacArthur genius grantee Allen Grossman. Teaching (at Boston University), research, and writing followed; she made the switch to magazine work at Commonweal in 2000. Daria received her At Large title at the same time as her diagnosis of the rare blood cancer multiple myeloma. At that time, she also signed on for poetry-editing duty with Rosemary Deen. She wrote Commonweal’s biannual children’s books column for ten years.
Richard Gilman, professor of drama at the Yale Drama School, was Commonweal’s drama critic from 1961 to 1964. His books include Chekhov’s Plays and Modern Drama.
Robert G. Hoyt (1922-2003) was with Commonweal from 1988 to 2002 as senior writer, Hoyt edited the journal’s Letters pages, solicited, edited, and/or rewrote articles, and wrote promotional copy. Previously: founding editor, National Catholic Reporter; associate editor, then editor, Christianity and Crisis; editor, American Report. His writing appeared in Harper’s, the New York Times, the Washington Post, Newsday, America, the Critic, and other publications. Educated at Saint Norbert College and the University of Missouri at Kansas City.
Patrick Jordan joined the Commonweal staff in 1984 and was the magazine's managing editor until 2012. He is a former managing editor of the Catholic Worker, a Vietnam-era draft resister, attended the Graduate Theological Union at Berkeley, and for seven years worked with terminal cancer patients. With Paul Baumann, he edited Commonweal Confronts the Century (Touchstone, 1999), and he is the editor of Dorothy Day: Writings from Commonweal (Liturgical Press). He and his wife Kathleen live on Staten Island. They have two adult children, Hannah and Justin.
Walter Kerr (1915-96) was Commonweal’s drama critic from 1950 to 1952. He was for many years the chief drama critic of the New York Times.
John Leo, who now writes the "On Society" column for U.S. News and World Report, worked as associate editor of Commonweal from 1964 to 1967. He subsequently worked at Time magazine as well as the New York Times.
Michael Novak, one of the nation’s leading neoconservative thinkers, was associate editor (at large) from 1967 to 1971. The author of many books, including The Spirit of Democratic Capitalism, Novak holds the George Frederick Jewett chair at the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, DC.
James O’Gara (1918-2003), was editor of Commonweal from 1967 to 1984. He joined the staff in 1952 as managing editor. A native of Chicago, O’Gara was active in the Catholic Worker movement, and subsequently editor of Today and U.S. Catholic magazines before coming to Commonweal.
William Pfaff, author of Barbarians Sentiments: Nationalism and Ideology in the Modern Age and several other books, is a columnist for the International Herald Tribune and lives in Paris. He was assistant editor of Commonweal from 1949 to 1952 and associate editor from 1954 to 1955.
Thomas Powers, author of The Man Who Kept the Secrets: Richard Helms and the CIA, among other books, was a Commonweal columnist from 1976 to 1982, specializing in questions of war and peace. He is a regular contributor to the New York Review of Books and other publications.
Wilfrid Sheed (1930-2011), the novelist and critic, served as both literary editor (1967-1969) and drama critic (1964-1967). His books include People Will Always Be Kind, Office Politics, Frank and Maisie, and Essays in Disguise.
George Shuster (1894-1977) joined the Commonweal staff in 1926 and was managing editor of the magazine from 1928 to 1937. Shuster, author of The Catholic Spirit in Modern English Literature (1922), is credited, along with the magazine’s founding editor Michael Williams, with shaping Commonweal’s basic approach to cultural and political issues. After leaving Commonweal, Shuster served as president of Hunter College in New York City, and was for many years a special assistant to the president at the University of Notre Dame.
Edward Skillin (1904-2000) arrived at Commonweal in 1934 and continued to commute to work every day from his home in New Jersey until his death in August 2000 at the age of 96. Starting out on the business side of the magazine, Mr. Skillin, along with Philip Burnham, purchased the magazine in 1938. From 1938 to 1967, Mr. Skillin was co-editor or editor. From 1967 until 2000 he served as publisher. He was the editor of The Commonweal Reader (1947).
Margaret O’Brien Steinfels was editor of Commonweal from 1988 to 2002. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the New Republic, and other publications. Her book, Who’s Minding the Children? The History and Politics of Day Care in America, was published in 1974. Before coming to Commonweal, Steinfels was director of publications at the National Pastoral Life Center and editor of its journal, Church. From 1981 to 1984, she worked as executive editor and business manager of Christianity and Crisis. She has also worked as a social-science editor at Basic Books and as editor of the Hastings Center Report. Steinfels is a graduate of Loyola University, Chicago, and New York University. She lives in Manhattan, and is married to Peter Steinfels. They have two grown children.
Peter Steinfels started as an editorial assistant at Commonweal in 1964 while a graduate student at Columbia University. He rose to associate editor before leaving the magazine in 1972 to take a position at the Hastings Center, a bioethics think-tank. For many years a columnist for Commonweal, he returned as executive editor in 1978, becoming editor in 1984. His book, The Neoconservatives, appeared in 1978. In 1988, he became senior religion correspondent for the New York Times, where he wrote the "Beliefs" column from 1990 to 2010. He is married to Margaret O’Brien Steinfels, and they live in Manhattan. They have two grown children.