Sherman Smith is the 2021 and 2022 Kansas Press Association’s journalist of the year. He has written award-winning news stories about the instability of the Kansas foster care system, misconduct by government officials, sexual abuse, technology, education, and the Legislature. He previously spent 16 years at the Topeka Capital-Journal. He is a lifelong Kansan.
Topeka therapist charged with having sex with child in state care
By: Sherman Smith - July 24, 2020
Editor’s note: A Shawnee County jury has determined Julie Herron is not guilty. TOPEKA — A Topeka mental health professional faces charges of having sexual relations with a patient in state care who was older than 16. Julie Herron, 51, is accused of engaging in intercourse, lewd fondling or sodomy with the child between February […]
Medical experts dispute claims by Kansas Board of Education member
By: Sherman Smith and Tim Carpenter - July 23, 2020
TOPEKA — Kansas State Board of Education member Michelle Dombrosky confronted health secretary Lee Norman during Wednesday’s meeting to ask why his advice — to delay the start of school for three weeks — conflicts with the opinion of other medical experts in the state. The board member from Olathe identified Children’s Mercy Hospital, the […]
Norton inmate tests positive for COVID-19
By: Sherman Smith - July 23, 2020
Kansas Department of Corrections secretary Jeff Zmuda on Thursday said an inmate at the state-run prison in Norton had tested positive for COVID-19, bringing the total of corrections facilities with known infections to eight. The infected man was among 96 residents in the minimum security unit at the Norton Correctional Facility. All of the unit’s […]
I was on front lines, and sidelines, of pandemic coverage. Now, I’m living the dream.
By: Sherman Smith - July 21, 2020
At the height of an unprecedented health crisis, I found myself on the sidelines. I knew somebody who knew somebody, and before I knew it, I had accepted an offer for my dream job — a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to launch a nonprofit news organization dedicated to serving the people of Kansas.