Shula Neuman, ’86

Radio Journalist


Photo from Neuman

Shula Neuman, Class of 1986, is an executive editor for St. Louis Public Radio.

Shula Neuman, Executive Editor at St. Louis Public Radio and 1986 Clayton graduate, hated her time at CHS.

“In retrospect, I probably would have hated any high school,” Neuman said. “But it’s only recently I’ve figured that out. I really put a premium, even to this day, on people treating each other with respect and kindness regardless of where you’re coming from. And that was just not there at [Clayton].”

So great was her dislike of the school that Neuman took summer classes and doubled up on P.E., managing to graduate a year early. Although she struggled in Clayton’s social environment, she valued the education she received (especially the English conferencing program) and grew close with several of her history and English teachers.

Her own academic journey was shaped by her lifelong dream of a career in journalism. At CHS, she joined the school newspaper, then called Clamo. However, after high school, Neuman spent her time pursuing other paths.

“I wanted to be a reporter from the time I was a little girl,” Neuman said. “In college, I lost my way. When I did some soul-searching in my 20s about what I really wanted to do with my life, I was like ‘Hey, I really loved that, writing and reporting.’”

After living abroad for a few years, Neuman returned to the U.S. where she attended Columbia University’s graduate journalism program. From there, she traveled the country, bouncing from one newspaper to another. However, she always knew she wanted to try radio journalism.

The opportunity to pursue this presented itself when she returned to St. Louis to care for her parents. A job opened up at St. Louis Public Radio as a subject matter editor, and Neuman pounced on it.

I really love journalism. The pay sucks and you’re hated by a lot of people, but I really feel like it’s an important mission.

— Shula Neuman, '86

Given her own history in journalism, Neuman is concerned about the current political climate surrounding the field and the general decline of newspapers and other media.

“I really love journalism”, Neuman said. “The pay sucks and you’re hated by a lot of people. But I really feel like it’s an important mission. We play a very important role in society. I can’t describe how sad it makes me because local journalism especially is so important. If nobody is watching what’s going on, bad things happen.”