Walter Russell Mead
Wall Street Journal Global Affairs Columnist; Author of Special Providence: American Foreign Policy and How It Changed the World
Allison Silver is the editor who made me an opinion journalist.
The lessons I learned from her about news hooks, structuring an op-ed, writing for intelligent lay readers instead of academics, and making your pieces punchy without dumbing them down gave me skills I still use today. As an editor and as a teacher, she is as good as it gets.
Kathryn Cramer Brownell
Author of Showbiz Politics: Hollywood in American Political Life; Assistant Prof. of History, Purdue University
Allison has taught me analytical and writing strategies to translate my academic scholarship in American history into accessible pieces for the public.
She has shown me how to transform an academic chapter or a peer-reviewed journal article into a hard-hitting opinion piece that communicates historical nuance and complexity with vibrant and clear prose.
David M. Kennedy
Pulitzer Prize Winner;
Donald J. McLachlan Prof. of History, Emeritus, Stanford University
I have published opinion pieces in scores of publications and worked with dozens of editors over four decades. I can say without qualification that Allison Silver was the savviest and most skilled editor with whom I have ever collaborated.
She has a superb nose for both topic and take, and brings to bear a lifetime’s love affair with the excellencies of the English language.
TONYA T. NEAVES
Dir., Centers for Public Service, Shar School of Policy & Government, George Mason University
Allison has more than just super-power editing skills, she has an exceptional ability to translate intellectual pieces for public consumption. Op-eds are a key to influencing opinion and shaping policy. Given the current era of social media and alternative facts, knowing how to write an opinion-piece is critical for all scholars. If afforded the opportunity to work with Allison, be sure to seize it.
Director, Security with Human Rights Program, Amnesty International USA
Allison is that exceptional editor who improves your work while making you feel it's still your own and says just what you wanted to say--only far more effectively.
She taught me how to write about the law in ways that were not only informative, but engaging and accurate—three difficult things to combine in legal reporting. Allison understands complex subjects and why they're important. But she also knows what will matter to a general audience and how to engage readers while informing them.
Julian E. Zelizer
CNN, Columnist, Fierce Urgency of Now; Prof. of History, Public Affairs, Princeton University
Allison Silver is a brilliant editor. Early in my career, I always tell colleagues, she really taught me how to transform my ideas from the academy into pieces for the press.
She had a major influence on my work and enabled me to become the public intellectual I am today. Her guidance still influences how I write my columns.
If you can work with Allison—don't miss the opportunity
Elizabeth A. Cobbs
Author of American Umpire
Melbern Glasscock Chair in American History, Texas A&M
For professors and writers wishing to influence policy or make a splash as “public intellectuals,” a quiver of op-eds is essential.
Allison has an eagle eye for what makes an arresting lead, a crucial ingredient in a strong op-ed, and she possesses unerring good judgment about how to structure an argument. There are iron rules that distinguish saleable op-eds from those that won't attract a nibble. Allison knows them all.
Jeffrey S. Dukes
Director, Purdue Climate Change Research Center; Prof. Forestry & Natural Resources & Biological Sciences, Purdue University
Allison’s op-ed boot-camp was transformative. First, she explained how to structure arguments most effectively. Then she sent us off to write. Day 2, she took our drafts and showed us what she meant, working with us individually to craft op-eds worthy of print. She works incredibly fast, so we learned a lot in a short time. The process of learning by doing helped bring the lessons home.
I wish I could have her on call 24-7. But at least I now have her voice in my head when I write for the public.