DARWIN PAYNE, a life-long resident of Dallas, is professor emeritus of communications at Southern Methodist University, where he taught journalism for 30 years. He holds a bachelor of journalism degree from the University of Texas at Austin, a master of arts degree from Southern Methodist University, and a PhD in American Civilization from the University of Texas at Austin. He is a former newspaper reporter for the Fort Worth Press and the Dallas Times Herald, and he was a reporter and commentator for "Newsroom," the groundbreaking public television news show on KERA-TV.Three Forks Press »
Payne has published numerous books, including award-winning biographies of the writer Owen Wister and the federal judge Sarah T. Hughes. His first book was a biography of Frederick Lewis Allen entitled The Man of Only Yesterday, published by Harper & Row in 1975. He has also written extensively on Dallas history, notably his well-received Big D: Triumphs and Troubles of an American Supercity in the 20th Century (now out of print but being revised for a third edition). His other books include From Prairie to Planes: How Dallas and Fort Worth Overcame Politics and Personalities to Build One of the World's Biggest and Busiest Airports (with Kathy Fitzpatrick as co-author); Initiative in Energy: The Story of Dresser Industries, 1880-1978; Dallas: An Illustrated History; Dynamic Dallas: An Illustrated History; Texas Chronicles: The Heritage and Enterprise of the Lone Star State; and (editor) Dissenting Opinion: Carl Brannin's Letters to the Editor, 1933-1976. Most recently, Darwin contributed an essay to Marshall Terry's newly reprinted historical account of Southern Methodist University, "From High on the Hilltop...", describing various aspects of the insitution's history as it approaches its centennial anniversary.
He has been a trustee and member of the Dallas Historical Society, and he was a member of the historical team that researched and gathered archival material for the Old Red Museum of Dallas County History and Culture. He resides in the Lake Highlands area of Dallas with his wife Phyllis Schmitz Payne, and is the father of four children.