Ryan J. Rusak — a Fort Worth resident with more than 20 years of journalism experience in Texas — is the new opinion editor of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Rusak spent 19 years with the Dallas Morning News following his graduation from Texas Christian University in Fort Worth. He is a graduate of Western Hills High School.
Rusak, 42, held several positions during his tenure with the Morning News, including political editor from 2007 to 2017.
Rusak describes himself as a “Fort Worth guy.”
“My wife and I were so happy to move back here two years ago from Dallas,” he said. “It’s an exciting time to be here, with the city’s major growth and the challenges and opportunities that brings.
Local media outlets have a crucial role in helping people focus on their communities, Rusak said.
“It’s important for readers to have a place where they can get informed viewpoints on local issues and interact with opinions across the spectrum,” he said. “To be part of that in my hometown is really exciting and a huge honor.
“I really look forward to interacting with Fort Worth readers and helping to drive conversation about local issues that really matter the most, especially in the digital space,” he said.
Colleen McCain Nelson, opinion editor for McClatchy, the Star-Telegram’s parent company, said Rusak’s depth of knowledge about Fort Worth, the state of Texas and public policy would ensure that the Star-Telegram’s opinion journalism is a must-read.
“I was fortunate to work with Ryan earlier in our careers, and he’s a first-class journalist: thoughtful, insightful, knowledgeable but eager to learn more,” Nelson said. “He’s a self-described Fort Worth guy who has lived and breathed Texas politics. And as opinion editor, he’ll ensure that the Star-Telegram is leading a civil, constructive debate about the issues that affect readers’ lives.”
Rusak lives in East Fort Worth with his wife Holly and their two dogs, Franco and Bettis, named for running backs for his favorite NFL team, the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Rusak replaces Michael Ryan, who has accepted a position on the opinion team with the Kansas City Star, which is also owned by McClatchy.
Michael Ryan came to Fort Worth last fall after a 16-year tenure at the Augusta (Georgia) Chronicle. The move to Kansas City will put him close to family.
“It was hard coming here. New town, a ton to learn in a hurry,” he said. “But it’s infinitely harder to leave. Fort Worth is one of the best places to live in the world, much less the U.S. The people have been great, and we’ve already formed lasting bonds. The Star-Telegram is filled with dynamic, dedicated journalists, and some of my all-time favorite colleagues.”