BRENT McDONALD, a senior video journalist at The New York Times, reports, shoots, and edits short documentaries and narrative-driven news stories for nytimes.com. His work has been widely recognized for both reporting and visual storytelling. In 2014, he was voted POYi Multimedia Photographer of the Year for a body of work, including coverage of the Boston Marathon bombing and two half-hour documentaries. McDonald currently lives in Chicago, but covers the world as a member of The Times's Enterprise Video team. He's also an FAA-certified drone pilot.
Since joining The Times in 2005, as a founding member of the newsroom's video operation, McDonald has covered such wide-ranging topics as the business of police body cameras and the plight of coral reefs, the opioid overdose epidemic and Venezuela's economic crisis. Before coming to The Times, he was an independent documentary producer and cameraman in Oakland, California, working for such venues as PBS Frontline/World, NOVA, and the Times-Discovery Channel.
He has won video awards from World Press Photo, POYi, the Society of Professional Journalists, RTDNA, and the Society of American Business Editors and Writers. His work was twice nominated for a national Emmy. And he has contributed to projects that won the Online Journalism Award, the IRE Medal, the Overseas Press Club Award, and the Pulitzer Prize.
McDonald also writes about and teaches video journalism. He twice served as video instructor at The New York Times’ Student Journalism Institute and has taught courses at the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism and NPPA's Northern Short Course. Born in 1977, McDonald grew up along the Sangamon River in rural Illinois. He studied art history and photography at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and documentary filmmaking at the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism.