Aaron Foley

Detroiter in Detroit, MI

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Aaron Foley is a Detroit-based journalism professional. He is currently a John S. Knight Journalism Fellow at Stanford University in the class of 2020. Previously, he served as chief storyteller for the City of Detroit, a first-of-its-kind position for a city government. He oversaw a team that creates digital content for TheNeighborhoods.org, a City-managed news site, and video programming for City cable, in addition to other community-facing features. Prior to working in local government, he was editor-in-chief of BLAC Detroit magazine, a 35,000-circulation publication distributed throughout Metro Detroit. Earlier in his career, he held staff positions at Ward's Automotive Reports and the Lansing State Journal, was a founding staffer of MLive Detroit and was a frequent contributor to Jalopnik.

In 2015, Aaron wrote "How to Live in Detroit Without Being a Jackass," a social guidebook to living in Detroit. In 2017, he edited an anthology, "The Detroit Neighborhood Guidebook." His essays have been included in "Voices From the Rust Belt" (2018), "A Detroit Anthology" (2013), the literary journal Transmission and a German textbook.

A frequent speaker and panelist, Aaron has delivered talks in Melbourne, Australia; Turin, Italy; Austin's SXSW; Gainesville, FL's frank; New York City, Washington, D.C., Denver, Chicago, Milwaukee and more, as well as a well-received TED talk in his hometown of Detroit. He has guested on NPR's "All Things Considered," PBS' "NewsHour," APM's "Marketplace," WNYC's "On the Media," C-SPAN 2's "Book TV," the Australian Broadcasting Corporation's "News Breakfast," BBC's "Where the World's Moving" podcast and several more local, national and international TV and radio programs. [See a collected list of Aaron's talks and appearances here.] He has been recognized by Adweek, Wayne State University, the Michigan Chronicle, Detroit Young Professionals, Engaging Local Government Leaders and other organizations as a leader in his fields.

Aaron's freelance journalism has appeared in CNN, The Atlantic, Columbia Journalism Review, Next City, Reuters, Foreign Policy, BuzzFeed and more. He has represented Detroit in videos for Thrillist and CNN Travel, has been interviewed and quoted in several publications worldwide, contributed research to the 2017 film "Detroit" and has appeared in documentaries and TV shows about Detroit.

A devoted Michigan State Spartan, Aaron also hosts pub trivia in his spare time. You can email him at aaronkfoley[at]gmail[dot]com.