A native son of Chicago, John W. Fountain is an award-winning journalist and author of True Vine: A Young Black Man’s Journey of Faith, Hope and Clarity; and Dear Dad: Reflections on Fatherhood. A professor of journalism at Roosevelt University, he writes a weekly Sunday column for the Chicago Sun-Times. A Sun-Times columnist since 2010, he writes about murder, religion, faith and “the church”; about poverty and growing up on the other side of the tracks in Chicago; about the everyday stuff that fills our lives. Fountain was formerly a national correspondent for The New York Times and a staff writer at the Washington Post and the Chicago Tribune.
Over a 25-year career, he has won numerous awards. In 2014 and 2011, Fountain received the Peter Lisagor Award for Exemplary Journalism for columns published in the Sun-Times. Fountain won the Lisagor Award in the category of news column or commentary among daily newspapers with a circulation of 250,000 or more from the Chicago Headline Club—the largest local chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists in the country. In 2014, Fountain’s column was awarded best column by the Illinois Press Association. In 2012, for his column in the Sun-Times, Fountain received the Illinois Associated Press Editors Association Award and the Chicago Journalists Association Sarah Brown Boyden Award.
His essay, “The God Who Embraced Me,” appears in National Public Radio’s book, This I Believe (Henry Holt Books, 2006), as part of the nationally acclaimed series initiated by Edward R. Morrow. Fountain is currently working on two book projects: No Place for Me: Letters to the Church in America; and Son of the Times: Life, Laughter, Love and Coffee, a book of essays. He and his wife Monica have two children and live in Chicago’s south suburbs.