Photo by Evie Carpenter.

Photo by Evie Carpenter.


Terry Greene Sterling is a journalist, author and teacher. She grew up on an Arizona cattle ranch, and often visited her Mexican-American grandmother in Sonora. Because her family was rooted in two cultures, she has long written about the people, policies and landscapes of the borderlands. A fluent Spanish speaker, she was a Phoenix New Times staff writer for fourteen years. She’s written for The Washington Post, Newsweek, The Daily Beast, The Atlantic, Slate, Village Voice, The Guardian, High Country News, Arizona Highways, Phoenix New Times, The Arizona Republic, and many other publications. Her work was selected for inclusion in and the Investigative Reporters and Editors website.  

Named Arizona’s Journalist of the Year three times, she’s received more than fifty international, national, and regional journalism awards. They include a James Aronson Award for Social Justice Journalism for a story on immigration restrictionism that was part of a larger series, a National Association of Black Journalists First Place in Feature Writing, and a Society of Professional Journalists Silver Key Award for twenty-five years of notable journalism. She’s the author of Illegal, Life and Death in Arizona’s Immigration War Zone, published by Globe Pequot Press in 2010. She’s coauthoring a book with radio journalist Jude Joffe-Block about Arizona’s roots in the nation’s immigration divide, and the lessons Arizona can teach us about getting past it. The book will be published by University of California Press.

She’s taught for the Poynter Institute in St. Petersburg, Florida. She has taught narrative nonfiction for fifteen years at the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University, where she is writer-in-residence and affiliated faculty. At Cronkite, she’s directed the Borderlands digital reporting team for Cronkite News, and has taught Magazine Writing, Reporting, Sustainability Writing, Depth Reporting and Food and Media.  She conducts Cronkite Writers Workshops for students.

Outside of ASU, she’s also given workshops and has served on panels for colleges and community groups and libraries. Topics include everything from immigration to sensory reporting. She has a Creative Nonfiction MFA from Goucher College and a BA in Journalism from the Cronkite School at Arizona State University.

She lives in the desert near Phoenix with her husband and a white dog that eats carrots.