Biography

I am an independent journalist, writer and photographer based in Lexington, Kentucky. I was a columnist for The Lexington Herald-Leader from 2008-2019 and the managing editor from 1998-2008.  I previously worked for The Atlanta Journal-Constitution and The Associated Press. I was inducted into the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame in 2016. The craziest thing I have ever done for a story was rappel down the side of Lexington's tallest building (above, photo by Pablo Alcalá).



Photography

My photographs have appeared in Newsweek and Garden & Gun magazines, in several books, on the Associated Press wire and in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, The Lexington Herald-Leader and dozens of other newspapers. I have been a writing and story coach since 1995 at The Mountain Workshops, an annual visual storytelling workshop sponsored by Western Kentucky University. I also enjoy travel and landscape photography, and I take a lot of pictures of my two adorable grandchildren.



Contact

tomeblen@gmail.com


“I became a journalist to come as close as possible to the heart of the world.”
Henry Luce

“The difference between the almost right word and the right word is … the difference between the lightning bug and the lightning.”  —Mark Twain

“When people look at my pictures I want them to feel the way they do when they want to read a line of a poem twice.” — Robert Frank

Governor's Awards in the Arts

When I won the media award in the Governor's Awards in the Arts in 2013, the Kentucky Arts Council made this video about my work as a Lexington Herald-Leader columnist. 

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