Mirta Ojito is a journalist and an author who began her career in 1987. First, working for The Miami Herald and El Nuevo Herald, and later for The New York Times, where she won several awards, including a shared Pulitzer for national reporting in 2001 for a series of articles about race in America, and an American Society of Newspaper Editors Award for Best Foreign Reporting for her work in Cuba. At The Times, she covered immigration and contributed a piece to the New York Times Sunday Magazine that was nominated for the Pulitzer Prize.
She is the author of two works of non-fiction, Finding Mañana: A Memoir of a Cuban Exodus, and Hunting Season: Immigration and Murder in an All American Town. Her work has been included in multiple anthologies and some of her articles are part of the curriculum in journalism programs across the country. Her piece on the race series has been taught as a course in the psychology department at City College of New York.
Ojito transitioned to academia after her first book and taught at the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University as an Assistant Professor for almost nine years. While there, she developed the school’s first course on immigration reporting and co-developed another course on the intersection of social media and human rights. She helped develop a media friendly dictionary of immigration terms and has been part of several juries for the The Immigration Journalism Award of the French-American Foundation. More recently, she was a member of the jury that awarded the American Mosaic Journalism Prize to recognize journalists that write about underrepresented communities.
In 2014, Ojito left Columbia and joined the Standards teams of NBC News, and was assigned to Noticias Telemundo where she is now the Senior Director of Standards. Last year, she won her first Emmy as a producer of the documentary Harvest of Misery/Cosecha de Miseria that went on to win seven other national awards. She is a member of the National Association of Hispanic Journalists, the Advisory Board of the Spanish-language Journalism Program at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism, and a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. Ojito earned her BA at Florida Atlantic University and her MS from Columbia University.