Adjunct Intructor of Journalism & Public Policy

Author, financial journalist



137 Sanford Building


Karen Blumenthal is a long-time financial journalist and author of a dozen books for adults and young people.

After graduating from Duke University with honors in economics, Blumenthal began her career at the Dallas Morning News as a suburban reporter. She soon moved to reporting business news, primarily the emerging computer industry.

She joined The Wall Street Journal’s Dallas bureau, where she covered a range of beats, including buyouts and the bankruptcies that followed, retail, technology, and oil and gas.  During that time, she earned an MBA from Southern Methodist University.

Blumenthal moved into editing as business editor of the Dallas newspaper, and then returned to The Wall Street Journal as deputy bureau chief and then bureau chief. In that role, she supervised a dozen reporters in eight states, and coordinated and edited one of the Sept. 11, 2001, stories that won the 2002 Pulitzer Prize for spot-news reporting. While at the Journal, she wrote her first two nonfiction books for young people and an investing book for adults, Grande Expectations: A Year in the Life of Starbucks’ Stock.

She left the paper in 2006 to focus on writing books, and also wrote a personal finance column for the Wall Street Journal from 2008 to 2013. Blumenthal has since written two financial guides for adults and seven more books for young people, including biographies of Steve Jobs and Hillary Clinton, and narrative nonfiction books on prohibition, guns and Bonnie and Clyde. Her next book, Jane Against the World: Roe v. Wade and the Fight for Reproductive Rights, will be out in February 2020 from Roaring Brook Press, an imprint of Macmillan. Her books have won several awards from the American Library Association and been named to multiple best-of-the-year lists.

As a Reynolds Visiting Business Journalism Professor, she has taught business journalism at Texas Christian University and the University of North Texas.

A passionate believer in the power of libraries, she serves on the City of Dallas’ Municipal Library Board and on the boards of the Friends of the Dallas Public Library and the Friends of the SMU Library.


In the News 

The Real MVP of This Team,” New York Daily News, July 9, 2019

Life Can Get Weird When You’re Married to the Middle Seat,” Wall Street Journal, July 31, 2019


Representative Publications

Jane Against the World: Roe v. Wade and the Fight for Reproductive Rights, Roaring Brook Press, February 2020

Bonnie and Clyde: The Making of a Legend, Viking Books for Young Readers, August. 2018

Hilary Rodham Clinton: A Woman Living History, Feiwel and Friends, 2016

Tommy: The Gun That Changed America, Roaring Brook Press, 2015

Steve Jobs: The Man Who Thought Different, Feiwel and Friends, 2012

Bootleg: Murder, Moonshine, and the Lawless Years of Prohibition, Roaring Brook Press, 2011

  • PJMS 390S-40 Business Journalism (NEW COURSE) (Spring 2020)