The staff of the Texas Observer

Save the Texas Observer!

The board of the Observer wants to close us down. Help us!


Gabriel Arana is a Latinx man with short dark hair wearing a light button down shirt.

UPDATE March 29, 5:15pm: We did it, y’all! Thanks to your incredible generosity and outpouring of support, the board of directors voted to reverse the closure and layoffs.

The Texas Democracy Foundation, the nonprofit parent of the Texas Observer, told its staff Monday that it is laying off employees—including journalists and editors—and ceasing publication on Friday, March 31, 2023.

A Go Fund Me was established so that readers and supporters of the Observer can give a lifeline to staff and journalists.

Shuttering the publication would be extremely damaging to a staff that was recently and successfully rebuilt after a previous crisis. It would adversely affect staff who need their pay to cover cat food and rent, to pay for kids in college and people who have a baby on the way. It would cause journalists to lose credibility with those who have supported stories already published or in progress, including their recent series on women’s health and threats to Texas rivers.

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The impact of this shutdown on the current team is devastating. “Where else can I go to write a column on transgender issues that takes on the New York Times?” asked one writer. Another was in the process of planning paternity leave for his first child. Another was covering Texas’ war on public schools. “That’s not how a progressive magazine should treat its staff,” said one editor.

What does the Observer mean to its journalists and to Texans? Editorial independence and journalistic freedom have been the hallmarks of the Observer since its founding in 1954. The publication has been freer—less encumbered by the demands of business, advertisers and grantmakers—than any other publication of its stature. As such, the institution has been a proving ground for countless journalists over the years and continuing to this day, and a vital watchdog to extremists, corporations and politicians who would harm Texas and Texans.

Will you help save the staff of the Observer by contributing now?

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