Our board of directors is made up of civic and business leaders who are committed to Fort Worth Report’s mission of informing, engaging and empowering the community through local journalism. Directors help establish our institutional mission and policies and guide overall strategy, but they are not involved in news decisions.
William W. “Bill” Meadows, President, and Co-chair, Board of Directors
Bill Meadows currently serves as the Chairman Emeritus for Hub International Texas. He recently served as Chair of the DFW International Airport Board and is the Chairman of North Texas High Speed Rail Commission. He has served as a member of the Texas Transportation Commission, Texas Water Development Water Board, Fort Worth City Council and the North Texas Tollway Authority.
He has also served as a Trustee of the Hatton W. Sumners Foundation and a board member of the Southwestern Exposition Livestock Show and Rodeo. He has previously served on the boards of numerous organizations, including Southwestern University, Fort Worth Country Day, Museum of Science and History, Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce and Streams and Valleys, Inc.
Wes Turner, Director and Co-chair
Wes Turner is a long-time civic leader in Fort Worth, having been publisher of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, from 1997 to 2008. After retiring from the Star-Telegram, he served as chairman of the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce. He currently is a consultant for Advance Newhouse, a long-standing national publisher of daily newspapers and digital news web sites. His other civic service includes board chair of United Way of Metropolitan Tarrant County and board member of the Van Cliburn Foundation and Performing Arts of Fort Worth.
Turner was a director of OmniAmerican Bank (now Southside Bank) and has served as chairman of the board of Texas Health Resources. He received the Pat Taggart Award from the Texas Daily Newspaper Association, the group’s highest honor for a Texas newspaper publisher. He also was honored with the Schieffer School of Journalism Ethics Award at Texas Christian University and by the Press Club of Dallas for its annual Legends of North Texas Journalism award.
Marianne Auld, Director
Marianne M. Auld is the managing partner of Kelly Hart & Hallman, a law firm rooted in Fort Worth.
Ms. Auld began her career as a law clerk on the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit. Following her clerkship, she joined Kelly Hart as an associate in the firm’s litigation section, where she worked on a wide range of civil matters for clients, including governmental entities and both publicly traded and privately held companies. Later, she served as a tenured professor of law at Baylor Law School, where she taught, among other courses, civil procedure, remedies, and appellate brief writing. She rejoined Kelly Hart in 2008 as a partner in the firm’s appellate section.
In addition to her professional career, Ms. Auld is past board chair of the Fort Worth Chamber of Commerce. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for a number of nonprofit organizations, including the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, the Fort Worth Symphony, and Fort Worth Cradle to Career.
Jonathan Morris, Director
Jonathan Morris is a Fort Worth entrepreneur and co-founder of Memo Hospitality Group LLC, which is opening Hotel Dryce, a boutique hotel in the Cultural District. He opened the full-service Fort Worth Barber Shop in 2014 and later The Lathery, a men’s grooming store, after working as an account director and interactive producer for Agency Entourage of Dallas. That followed work as an audio specialist and production assistant for Turner Sports and CNN in Atlanta, where he graduated from Morehouse College with a degree in Business Administration. He has been a volunteer at Lena Pope Home since 2013.
Morris’ latest venture is hosting Self-Employed, a show on Chip and Joanna Gaines’ new Magnolia Network.
Mitch Whitten, Director
Mitch Whitten is chief operating officer, Visit Fort Worth, a 501(c)6 organization dedicated to economic development through business and leisure tourism. In addition to increasing tourism in Fort Worth, Whitten’s team created the Fort Worth Film Commission, the Hear Fort Worth music association and Fort Worth showcases at the international SXSW events in 2018 and 2019.
Whitten’s previous experience includes head of marketing for SMU, a private university in Dallas, Pier 1 Imports corporate communications and reporting for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. His first job in journalism was for the Associated Press.
John Lumpkin, Director and Secretary
John Lumpkin’s early reporting experiences were as general assignment and county courthouse reporter for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram in the late 1960s before he moved to Associated Press. After working as a journalist and manager, he retired as AP’s Vice President for Newspaper Markets in 2009 when he was named Director of the Schieffer School of Journalism at TCU. He promoted TCU journalism as an accredited elite program among the nation’s private universities.
After retiring from TCU, he served as vice chair and governor of the Headliners Foundation of Texas until 2021, coordinating the Headliners Foundation’s journalism awards programs. Lumpkin received the “North Texas Journalism Legends Award” in 2017 from the Press Club of Dallas. He also was vice chair and member of the board of directors of The Cavalier Daily, Inc., the nonprofit corporation of independent student media at his alma mater, the University of Virginia, from 2017 to 2022. He is a contributing writer for Texas Highways magazine.
Rachel Navejar Phillips, Director
Rachel Navejar Phillips is a marketing executive and civic leader who is deeply involved in her hometown of Fort Worth.
Currently business development director for The Rios Group, where she oversees proposal development, client relations, and marketing and branding activities, Ms. Phillips previously worked at Tarrant Regional Water District, where she was a key liaison between civic groups, government agencies and community stakeholders. She is a past winner of the Fort Worth Business Press 40 under 40 Award and is a 2019 graduate of Leadership North Texas.
Ms. Phillips has served as a board member of multiple community organizations, including the Junior League of Fort Worth, The Women’s Center, Girls Inc. of Tarrant County, Mayfest Fort Worth, and Presbyterian Night Shelter. She graduated with a degree in government from St. John’s University.
Melissa Rankin, Director
Melissa Rankin is a CFP® professional and a Financial Advisor at Edward Jones in Fort Worth, Texas. Melissa grew up in Connecticut and moved to Texas in 2012. Prior to beginning her career as a financial services professional, she worked at Catholic Charities Fort Worth managing federal grants and
Melissa graduated college with a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Education from Trinity College and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from American University. Melissa holds her Accredited Asset Management Specialist certification as well as her Series 7 & 66.
Melissa serves on the Board of Director’s at the YMCA of Metropolitan Fort Worth, Catholic Charities Fort Worth, Communities Foundation of Texas Advisory Council, Fort Worth Report Board of Directors, and the Burchell Youth Foundation. Melissa has two young kids and enjoys reading in her spare time.
Neils Agather, Director
Neils Agather served as Executive Director of The Burnett Foundation for 19 years and worked in the family office of Anne W. Marion for 13 years overseeing investments and the operations of Burnett Oil and the Four Sixes Ranch and Burnett Security. Prior to that he was President of Vallis Form Service, a printing company with operations in Kansas, Illinois and Maryland. Early in his career Neils worked for Prudential Bache’s Corporate Finance Department and Chemical Bank’s Latin American Division.
Neils currently serves on the Board of Trustees of TCU, the Board of Directors of the American Airpower Heritage Foundation, the American Airpower Heritage Museum and the Commemorative Air Force. He has previously served on the boards of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Tarrant County, the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History, and Lena Pope Home