Elly Fishman


Elly Fishman’s long-form, investigative writing often covers the lives of young people navigating urban America. From 2012 to 2017, Fishman worked as a senior staff editor at Chicago magazine where her stories won numerous awards including Chicago Tribune’s Beardstown Award, the company’s top honor for writers, and the prestigious Peter Lisagor Award for best feature reporting of the year in 2016. In 2017, Fishman’s article “Welcome to Refugee High” won the City Regional Magazine Award for Best Multi-Platform Storytelling. Writer and painter Tony Fitzpatrick called Fishman’s writing “moral, empathetic, and unsparing” while Stuart Dybek celebrated it as “vibrant and authentic.” Fishman’s current book project, “Refugee High,” an expansion of her 2017 story for Chicago magazine, will document a year inside Roger C. Sullivan High School on Chicago’s North Side. Sullivan is a place that has reinvented itself as a sanctuary and source for second chances for refugee and immigrant students. The book will follow a group of students who have come from the Middle East, Africa, Asia, and Central America and the passionate group of adults fighting to help these teenagers start over in a culture that increasingly vilifies them. “Refugee High” will be published by The New Press. Fishman grew up in Chicago and graduated from University of Chicago.

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