Michael Ainsworth

A full-time photojournalist at The Dallas Morning News since 1995, Michael Ainsworth has been assigned to cover more than two dozen hurricanes throughout his career.

“Hurricane Boy” as he is described by other staffers, is a 1990 graduate of The University of Texas at Arlington, with a degree in Journalism. He says he “was blessed to be part of the Dallas Morning News team” that was awarded the Pulitzer for Breaking News coverage in 2006 for coverage of Hurricane Katrina.

Willie J. Allen, Jr.

Willie J. Allen Jr. returned to school at age 35 to pursue a childhood dream of being a photographer. Born in Oklahoma City, he spent his childhood in Alaska and California. Allen has been a staff photographer for the St. Petersburg Times since October 2003.

Kathy Anderson

Kathy Anderson is a New Orleans–based photographer specializing in editorial, commercial, documentary and stock photography.

In addition to her work as a staff photographer at The Times-Picayune newspaper for more than two decades, Kathy Anderson has participated in the photo books “America 24/7,” “Louisiana 24/7,” “A Day in the Life of the American Woman” and The Times-Picayune’s “Katrina: The Ruin and Recovery of New Orleans.”

Anderson is a member of the National Press Photographers Association, Editorial Photographers and the American Society of Media Photographers. Her work has been honored numerous times in national and regional photography contests. She was part of the team that won the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service for its coverage of Hurricane Katrina.

She was born in Milwaukee and is a graduate of Indiana University. She lives in New Orleans with her husband and their two daughters.

Rick Bowmer

Rick Bowmer is a staff photographer for the Associated Press. He has been based in Portland, since 2003, and previously worked in AP bureaus in Washington, D.C., Jerusalem, Miami and Houston. Mr. Bowmer also has covered conflicts in Bosnia, Haiti, and the West Bank, and had assignments in Cambodia and Vietnam.

In addition to the Associated Press, he has worked as a staff photographer for the Philadelphia Daily News, The Philadelphia Inquirer and The Washington Post. He won the APME award for best news coverage in 2003 for his work on violence in the Middle East. Mr. Bowmer has been working in video since 2006.

Alex Brandon

Alex Brandon is a staff photographer with The Associated Press based in Washington DC. He joined the AP in February of 2006. He was on the staff of The Times-Picayune in New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina and the aftermath. A graduate of the University of Missouri, he has worked in Little Rock, San Diego, New York, New Orleans and Washington.

On assignment, Brandon went to Mount Everest covering the 1987 Arkansas Expedition. He’s covered Super Bowls, Final Four basketball, and the 1993 World Trade Center disaster in New York City.

Brandon was a member of The Times-Picayune staff that received two 2006 Pulitzer prizes, Breaking News Reporting and Public Service, for the coverage of Hurricane Katrina and the aftermath. Brandon has also won state, regional and national photography awards.

Brett Coomer

Brett Coomer is a staff photographer at the Houston Chronicle where he joined the photography staff in 2005. Previously, he worked as a freelance photographer for more than 10 years in the Houston area, shooting assignments for clients from around the world, including the Chronicle, the Associated Press, The Dallas Morning News, The Houston Post and the New York Times to name a few.

He moved to Houston in 1994 after working in Kansas on staff at The Pratt Tribune, The Independence Daily Reporter and the Hutchinson News.

Katrina was his first major hurricane.

Barbara Davidson

Barbara Davidson has been a staff photographer for The?Los Angeles Times since 2007. Prior to LA, she worked at The Dallas Morning News, The Washington Times, and The Record in Ontario, Canada.

Davidson has covered conflicts and in-depth issue-driven stories domestically and around the globe, and remains committed to telling intimate stories. She has documented humanitarian crisis brought on by war in Iraq, Afghanistan, The Democratic Republic of Congo, Israel, Gaza, and Bosnia. She documented the Tsunami disaster, Hurricane Katrina, and The China Earthquake. Her news feature assignments have also brought her to Yemen, Nigeria, and Rwanda.

In 2006, Ms. Davidson was named Newspaper Photographer of The Year by the Pictures of The Year International Competition. She won the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Photography with seven fellow staff members for their body of work depicting the pain and chaos after Hurricane Katrina swallowed up New Orleans and Mississippi. In 2009 she was awarded the Visa d’Or Daily Press award for her coverage of the earthquake in China and was exhibited at the Visa Pour l’image festival in France as well. She was this years recipient of The National Press Photographers Associations Cliff Edom’s “New America Award” and received Judges Recognition, in Pictures of The Year International, for her “ Frozen Land, Forgotten People” Navajo Nation essay.

Ms. Davidson was born and raised in Montreal, Canada and graduated from Concordia University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Photography and Film Studies.

Brett Duke

Brett was born and raised in Mobile, AL. He worked as a staff photographer at The Natchez Democrat, and The Meridian Star, both in Mississippi, prior to joining The Times-Picayune in 2001.

He works in the newspaper’s East Jefferson Bureau and resides in Hahnville, LA with his wife, Amy, and 6-month-old son, Evan.

Tom Fox

As a photojournalist, Tom Fox has spent 22 years experiencing the lives of others and sharing their stories with his camera. Every day is different, bringing to it a new dimension and sense of creativity.

Tom was part of a small team of photographers at The Dallas Morning News who won the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Photography for coverage of Hurricane Katrina. In 2008 he was honored by the Texas Associated Press Managing Editors as the Photojournalist of the Year and Star Photographer of the Year by the Texas Headliner’s Foundation. Tom also has won numerous Regional, National and International photography awards.

A native Minnesotan, Tom settled in Texas where he earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Texas – Arlington. He also worked as a staff photographer for the Corpus Christi Caller-Times and photo editor/chief photographer for The Arlington Morning News before returning to The Dallas Morning News.

Eric Gay

Eric Gay has worked as a photographer for the Associated Press since August 1986, beginning his career in the Dallas bureau.
He moved to the San Antonio office in the summer of 1999.

Prior to the AP, Gay worked for the Dallas Times Herald and Denton Record-Chronicle.

Gay graduated for the University of North Texas in 1990 with a BS in Journalism.

Marko Georgiev

Freelance photographer Marko Georgiev was born in 1974 and is currently based in Macedonia. Over his career he covered the wars all over the world including the Middle East and in the Balkan region. In 2003 he moved to New Jersey and began freelancing for The New York Times and other notable clients.

He covered many major US news events, including five hurricanes in the Gulf region. In 2007 and 2008 he did two tours in Iraq for the NYTimes. Other clients include The Star Ledger, AP, Reuters, WPN, Getty, Bloomberg.

Scott Goldsmith

Scott Goldsmith’s career had a jump start at Indiana University, Bloomington IN, where he won the College Photographer of the year Hearst Competition. After working at the Louisville Courier-Journal for 7 years, he moved to Pittsburgh PA to begin his private practice.

He has photographed feature stories for a wide variety of magazines including: The National Geographic, LIFE, TIME, Fortune, Business Week, People, Sports Illustrated Rolling Stone and US News & World Report. His work has taken him to the jungles of Costa Rica, the swamps of Jamaica, the slums of Haiti, caves, deserts, and several rides on Air Force One with the president. He has worked in 49 of the 50 US states and 10 foreign countries.

His work has been exhibited at the Nikon House in New York City, The Czech Republic, and Silver Eye in Pittsburgh.

Goldsmith has won over 100 awards and his work is featured in Communication Arts Photography Annual 2006, 2008 and 2009.

David Grunfeld

David Grunfeld is a staff photographer and an assistant photo editor at the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

Bill Haber

Bill Haber retired in August 2009 after almost 31 years with the Associated Press. In that time he covered Super Bowls, political conventions, worked in Central and South America, covered the Olympics in France, was assigned to Kuwait during the first gulf war, and almost all major sporting events.

He was hired by the AP in Dallas of 1978 and transferred to New Orleans in 1984. He worked for the Times-Picayune and the States-Item newspapers in New Orleans before joining the AP. He says his toughest assignment was Hurricane Katrina, and his best assignment was the opening of the the National World War II Museum.

Richard Alan Hannon

Richard Alan Hannon is a self-taught photojournalist who started out
shooting for the same newspaper that he delivered as a teenager in
Mansfield, Ohio. Since then, Hannon has photographed for newspapers in
Wyoming, South Carolina, and for the past 10 years, worked as a staff
photographer for The Advocate in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Recognized by Pictures of the Year International for his work during Hurricane
Katrina. Hannon loves meeting new people daily and telling their
unique stories in the best way he can.

Ted Jackson

Ted Jackson was born in McComb, Mississippi, in 1956 and is a graduate of Parklane Academy, Southwest Mississippi Junior College and the University of Southern Mississippi. After two years with the Daily Iberian in New Iberia, La, he joined The New Orleans Times-Picayune in 1984.

While covering news, sports and daily assignments for the paper, he photographed his first major photo essay, “Desire, Death of a Dream,” an essay on life in the Desire housing development, one of the country’s worst. Other projects have included the opening of the Berlin Wall, the Persian Gulf War, life in Cuba and political upheaval in Haiti. In 2003, he photographed “LEAP Year,” a local story about high-stakes school testing, where he documented one eighth-grade class through their year as they prepared for the LEAP test. The photos won the 2003 American Society of Newspaper Editors Award for Community Photojournalism.

In 1997, he was one of a four-person team that won a Pulitzer Prize for public service for “Oceans of Trouble,” a comprehensive look at the impending collapse of the world’s fisheries. Through the years, he has covered the physical destruction and emotional trauma of earthquakes and hurricanes, most notably, Hurricane Katrina. For their coverage of Hurricane Katrina, The Times-Picayune staff won a Pulitzer for public service and another for breaking news. Ted and his wife, Nancy, live in Covington, La.

Eliot Kamenitz

Eliot Kamenitz, 58, has been a staff photographer for the Times Picayune since 1980. Originally from New York City, he moved to Southwest Florida when he was 12 after a snow plow buried his father’s car “for the last time’’.

He has lived and worked in the South ever since, including St. Augustine, Fla., Macon, Ga., and Dallas, Texas. He is a 1974 graduate of the University of Florida with a Bachelor of Science degree in Journalism.

Before joining the Times-Picayune, Kamenitz had worked on eight newspapers in various capacities including copyeditor, reporter, features writer, food columnist and sports writer.

He lives in the Mid-City area of New Orleans with his wife Laura and cat Ranger. Their home was built in 1924 and sustained 2 feet of water during Katrina.

Brad Loper

Brad Loper joined the staff of The Dallas Morning News in July 2001 as a Staff Photographer following a five-year stint as a Staff Photographer/Special Projects Page Designer at the Arlington Morning News.

Born and raised in Amarillo, Texas, Loper moved to the Dallas/Fort Worth area in 1990 to attend The University of Texas at Arlington where he received a BA in Communication with a minor in Criminal Justice in 1993.

Following graduation, Loper interned at the Topeka Capital-Journal (Kansas) and the Palm Beach Post (Florida) before moving back to the DFW area.

During his career as a photographer at the DMN, Loper covered notable events including Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, the 2004 Republican National Convention in New York City, the Space Shuttle Columbia tragedy in 2003 and the Dallas Mavericks through more than 70 playoff games from 2002 through 2006 including the NBA Finals in 2006.

In 2006, Loper was one of eight photographers from the DMN awarded The Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Photography for their coverage of Hurricane Katrina. Later that same year he moved into his current role as a Photo Editor.

In 2008, 2009 and 2010 Loper was awarded Newspaper Picture Editor of the Year in the National Press Photographers Association’s Best of Photojournalism competition. In addition, two projects for which Loper was the editor for were finalists for The Pulitzer Prize in Feature Photography (The Bottom Line by Mona Reeder – 2008 and At the Edge of Life by Sonya N. Hebert – 2009).

Loper and his wife, Adrienne, have four children: Nathaniel, 12; Ian, 10; Gabriel 7 and Jacqueline Mei, 6; who was adopted from China in 2009.

Ellis Lucia

Ellis Lucia was born in New Orleans March 3, 1950, and has worked as a staff photographer for the Times-Picayune for the past 31 years. His father was a police reporter at the newspaper for many years and also owned a weekly newspaper in LaPlace where he had his first jobs learning every aspect of the print journalism business.

He grew up in rural St. James Parish and attended parochial elementary, public high school and state college. He lives in Covington with his wife, Bevil Knapp, their dog, Woody, and cat, Gabby.

John McCusker

John McCusker, 47, has been a staff photographer at the Times-Picayune since 1986. He is a graduate of Loyola University and a New Orleans native.

James Nielsen

James Nielsen was a mainstay freelance photojournalist for the Houston Chronicle for nearly a decade before joining the Houston Chronicle as a staff photojournalist in 2006. He has worked as a contract/freelance visual journalist for Agence France-Presse, Los Angeles Times, Texas Highway Magazine and Sporting News. His work has been featured in National Geographic, Time, Business Week, Newsweek and The New York Times and numerous other publications around the world.

He was honored in 2006 with a 63rd Annual Pictures of the Year International (POYi) Competition Award of Excellence for his Hurricane Katrina coverage.?

Melissa Phillip

Melissa Phillip joined the Houston Chronicle as a staff photographer in 2001. Previously she was a staff photographer for seven years at the Democrat and Chronicle in Rochester, New York. A native of Paris, Texas, she graduated from The University of North Texas.

Smiley Pool

Smiley N. Pool is the chief photographer and photo coach at the Houston Chronicle. As a staff photographer at the Dallas Morning News, Pool contributed aerial photography to the newspaper’s coverage of Hurricane Katrina, which won the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for Breaking News Photography.

He is a seven-time winner of the National Press Photographers Association regional photographer of the year award and his portfolio of work for 2005 was judged runner up for Photojournalist of the Year honors in the Best of Photojournalism competition. Most recently his sports portfolio for 2009 won first place in the Pictures of the Year International competition.

He is a member of the board of the National Press Photographers Association and a frequent speaker and instructor at workshops such as the NPPA’s Multimedia Immersion.

A native Texan who was born in Galveston, over his 25-year career he has he has also worked for the Colorado Springs Gazette and Austin American Statesman. He lives in Houston with his wife, writer Jessica Johns Pool.

Jim Reed

Jim Reed is an award-winning weather photographer who has been documenting America’s changing climate for 20 consecutive years. His credits include National Geographic, Newsweek, and The New York Times.

He is the author of the best-selling books Hurricane Katrina: Through the Eyes of Storm Chasers; and Storm Chaser: A Photographer’s Journey. Jim has appeared on several TV shows, including Good Morning America, The Today Show, and CNN’s American Morning.

His work has been shown at The Corcoran Museum, Tulane University, and PhotoPlus Expo in New York. Jim has photographed 17 hurricanes, including Katrina.

Matt Rose

Photojournalist Matt Rose moved to Asheville, NC in 2007 after a 23 year award-winning career at the New Orleans Times-Picayune newspaper.

He grew up in Seattle, Wa. learning photography while working at his father’s portrait studio. He lives with his wife, daughter, two dogs and a cat and works as a freelance photographer shooting for magazines, architects, brides and other clients. His portfolio can be viewed at You can also check out his blog at

John Rowland

John Rowland was born in the Bronx, New York in 1962. While attending college he met his future wife Frances Crucian whom he married in 1988 they have four children.

Rowland has been taking pictures since he got his first camera as a child. Rowland pursued his passion for photography getting a Bachelor of Science degree in Photography from Sam Houston State University in 1984. His first job was in the Texas Medical Center as a medical photographer. He then went on to work in a commercial studio in Houston working with advertising agencies. The oil economy of Houston was hit hard in the late 80’s and Rowland was laid off at the commercial studio but was able to secure a job as a photographer at the Pasadena Citizen in 1991 then the Baytown Sun followed by the Daily Advertiser in Lafayette.

Rowland was assigned to the Houma area as Katrina made land fall. It quickly became clear that New Orleans had been the hardest hit and so he made his way there in the next day. It was by far the most memorable assignment of his career.

Rowland recently has returned to the commercial photography world running the photography studio for a jewelry manufacturer handling their advertising, catalog and web photography. Rowland also continues doing freelance editorial assignments.

Tom Shea

Originally from West Chester, Pennsylvania Thomas B. Shea moved to the Houston, Texas area in 1993. In 1992 he received a photojournalism degree for Rochester Institute of Technology in Rochester, NY. He has been a full-time for photographer for University of Houston for the past 10 years.

For the past six years he has freelanced for USA Today, The Houston Chronicle, Wall Street Journal, The Houston Dynamo and Getty Images. Before working for University of Houston he was a staff photographer for five years for Houston Community Newspapers and taught High School art and photography classes for four years in the Spring Independent School District.

Besides photography he has been married to his wife Lora Shea for 10 years and have six year old twin daughters, Hannah and Sarah Shea. He is working on a long term project on his twins documenting their similarities and how they mimic each others behavior. When not photographing, or playing with he twins, he enjoy swimming and playing ice hockey.

Ben Sklar

Benjamin Sklar, a Baton Rouge native, is a freelance photographer based in Austin, Texas specializing in editorial, documentary, and portrait photography. His photography has been recognized by the Society of Professional Journalists, Photographer of the Year International and the Gran Prix de Photographie Paris, among other organizations.

Most notably, in 2006 the Associated Press included his work from Hurricane Katrina in a nomination for the Pulitzer Prize. His images have appeared in such publications as The New York Times, National Geographic Magazine, Newsweek, The London Sunday Times and Time Magazine. He earned a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of Texas at Austin.

Mario Tama

Mario Tama has covered global events for major magazines and newspapers in Europe, the US, Latin America and Asia, including September 11, the war in Afghanistan, the war in Iraq, the funeral of Pope John Paul II.

His photographs from Hurricane Katrina were featured worldwide, in National Geographic, Newsweek, newspapers, and in other media.

In 2008 he was nominated for an Emmy for his documentary work on Coney Island and won Cliff Edom’s New America Award for his work in New Orleans. He has received multiple honors and awards from: Pictures of the Year International, White House News Photographers Association, NPPA’s Best of Photojournalism, UNICEF Photo of the Year, Care International Award for Humanitarian Reportage, China International Press Photo Contest, and Days Japan International Photojournalism Awards.

He studied photography at Rochester Institute of Technology and began his career as a staff photographer for the Prince George’s Journal in Maryland. He then freelanced in Washington, DC for the Washington Post and Agence France-Presse before joining Getty Images in 2001.?

Irwin Thompson

Assistant Director of Photography Irwin Thompson joined The Dallas Morning News as a photojournalist in April of 1990. Before coming to Dallas, he was a staff photographer for the New Orleans Times-Picayune and the Monroe News-Star.

In 2006, he was among The News’ team of eight photojournalists that won the Pulitzer Prize in Breaking News Photography for its gripping images showing the pain, chaos, and suffering that ensued after Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans.

Mr. Thompson was born in Lake Charles, Louisiana, and grew up in nearby DeRidder. He graduated in 1984 from the University of Louisiana at Monroe with a B.A. degree in photojournalism.

Chris Usher

Born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri, Chris Usher graduated from Indiana University at Bloomington with a degree in Journalism. Usher spent several years as a newspaper photographer before going freelance and moving to Washington, DC in 1990. Since then Usher’s images have appeared in numerous domestic and international publications including TIME, LIFE, Newsweek, US News & World Report, Sports Illustrated, People, Fortune, Forbes, BusinessWeek, L’Express, Der Spiegel, Stern, VSD, and Globus.

Throughout his career, Usher has received numerous awards for his photography: Indiana College Photographer of the Year (1985 and 1986), the William Randolph Hearst Photojournalism Championship (1985 and 1986), POY (2000, 2001, 2003) WHNPA (2001, 2003, 2005, 2007, 2008), CHIPP (2006), and an Eisenstaedt Award (2000) for his unique and controversial depiction of Clinton’s post-acquittal speech. His award-winning photos have most recently been exhibited at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, DC.

Both of his last two personal projects, One of Us, a three-year photo-documentary project begun on the day Hurricane Katrina made landfall in the Gulf Coast, and Behind the Velvet Rope, Usher’s documentation of behind-the-scenes moments at the White House, are now traveling exhibitions and books.

Currently, Usher is immersed in wet plate and other alternative photographic processes. When he isn’t working on assignments or projects, Chris would rather be fly-fishing in Montana.

Craig Walker

Since the Sept. 11, 2001, Denver Post staff photojournalist Craig F. Walker has covered some of the most important threads of the terror attacks in New York and Washington, D.C., fixing a compassionate lens on the men, women and children tangled then, and now, in the continuing story of geopolitical conflict.

He chronicled the aftermath of the collapse of the World Trade Center towers in New York, the war in Afghanistan in 2001 and 2002, including the inauguration of Afghan President Hamid Karzai, and the deployment of American troops in Kuwait in 2003, and in Iraq in 2005 and 2009.

Amid it all, in September of 2005, Walker was dispatched to cover search and rescue efforts and the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, in New Orleans, LA. The experience had a profound effect on Walker.

Walker’s photo essay “Ian Fisher: American Soldier” was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for feature photography in 2010. It also earned the American Society of News Editors community photojournalism award, the Sidney Hillman Foundation prize for photojournalism, a Gold Medal from the Society of Newspaper Design and the grand prize in Editor & Publisher’s Photos of the Year competition. His portfolio received third place in POYi’s Newspaper Photographer of the Year category.?In previous years, Walker has received awards from National Press Photographers Association’s Best of Photojournalism, National Headliner and UNICEF Photo of the Year.

Walker came to the Post in 1998 from the Berkshire Eagle in Pittsfield, Mass., where, he chronicled the final seven months in the life of a single mother with AIDS. He graduated from Rhode Island School of Photography and began his career in Massachusetts, at the Marlborough Enterprise. Walker grew up in York, Pennsylvania.

Susan Walsh

Susan Walsh is a staff photographer for the Associated Press in the Washington bureau covering everything from the White House to Capitol Hill with some sports thrown in for fun. Walsh was part of the Associated Press photo team that won the 1999 Pulitzer Prize for feature photography for a collection of photos chronicling former President Bill Clinton’s impeachment.

A native of Las Vegas, Nev., Walsh attended Boston University with dreams of becoming an aerospace engineer. Her road to photojournalism was paved after she discovered that photography came easier than physics. She interned at the Patriot Ledger in Quincy, Mass., and then took a staff job at the Springfield Union News in Springfield, Mass.

In 1991, Walsh started as a staff photographer for the Associated Press in Boston. She transferred to the Washington bureau in 1997 after getting bit by the political bug covering President Clinton’s second inauguration.

Her assignments have taken her all over the world and she has covered five Olympic Games, six Super Bowls, and countless political and sporting events. Walsh served as President of the White House News Photographers Association ( for 5 years.

Walsh says she’s a “paid busybody who gets a front row seat to history.”

“I’ve had so many cool ‘firsts,’” she says. “My first time on Air Force One, my first Super Bowl, my first Olympics. It’s been a great way to see the world.”

Jim Winn

Jim Winn is a Seattle area photographer specializing in long term projects. In years past he was worked with a wide variety of editorial and commercial clients through Vellum Media.

Jennifer Zdon

Jennifer Zdon is a documentary and editorial photographer working in New Orleans whose passion is to portray moments that often go unnoticed, giving readers a peek behind closed doors, with a warm and compassionate touch.

A graduate of San Francisco State University, she has covered stories in South America, Europe and across the American South and contributed to the photo books “America 24/7,” “Louisiana 24/7” and “America at Home.”

Zdon has won several regional and national photojournalism honors, including being named a finalist for Photographer of the Year in the 2002 Pictures of the Year International competition.

She is also a member of the staff at The Times-Picayune that won the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service for Katrina coverage.

About The Project

When photographers converged on the convention center in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, a survivor cried out, "Thank God, the press is here.”

Her words expressed a sentiment that characterizes the storytelling and relationships between the people of the Gulf Coast and the media that developed in the months that followed.

On Thursday, August 19, a juried exhibit of Katrina imagery opened at the Ogden Museum of Southern Art coinciding with the 5-year anniversary of the disaster.

The exhibit, and a program of workshops and seminars explore the past, present and future of visual storytelling of Gulf Coast disasters.

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