Chad Lawhorn (City and neighborhoods reporter)

I've been reporting news in Lawrence since 1992. Before joining the NewsCenter, I was editor, publisher and owner of the Lawrence Business Ledger and the Baldwin Ledger newspapers. I've been with The World Company since 2001, when I sold my weekly newspaper business to the company.

I mainly cover city government and neighborhoods, but I've also previously served as business editor for the Journal World, and have undertaken a variety of first-person journalism projects. In parts of 2007 and 2008, I received some national publicity for a series of articles detailing how I purchased a handgun, received a concealed carry license from the state, and carried the weapon around for a few days.

I also enjoy writing profiles on area people, ranging from a promient nightclub owner to the corner hot dog vendor to a 91-year old woman who still goes to work six days per week. If you know of someone interesting, send me an e-mail.

And from time to time, I like to take people to places that they don't often get to go. Sometimes I even take a video camera, like the night I hung out with a bunch of mixed martial artist competitors.

I have my degree in journalism from Kansas University, and also did some undergraduate work at Emporia State University. I'm a native of the small Kansas town of Melvern, which is about an hour away from Lawrence in Osage County.

My wife and I have two children. In my spare time, I work on writing what I hope will be my first novel, play pool, boat, umpire Little League baseball, and barbecue.

Recent stories

Lawrence commission split on idea of paving way for food trucks
August 19, 2014
Commissioners on Tuesday evening were split on the idea of new regulations that would allow food trucks to set up more permanent operations in a host of parking lots across the city. Commissioners said they wanted an additional two weeks to consider new regulations that would remove a rule that prohibits food trucks from operating for more than three hours a day in Lawrence. By Chad Lawhorn
Local leaders, Indian tribe to begin new talks about future of North Lawrence property
August 19, 2014
Discussions are ready to begin again on how an Oklahoma-based Indian tribe will develop more than 90 acres of property it has purchased in North Lawrence.By Chad Lawhorn
Lawhorn’s Lawrence: Keeping up with Margaret Shirk
August 17, 2014
Margaret Shirk may be the most powerful woman in Lawrence. If you don’t believe me, find any number of Lawrence leaders who spent their college years at Kansas University, and ask them if they spent any time at the Shirk Barn, which has been renowned for decades as one of the top local spots for fraternity and sorority parties and other such gatherings. Then, tell them that you recently just spoke with Margaret and watch these esteemed community leaders begin to sweat and quiver as they wonder what story she may have told.By Chad Lawhorn
Chamber of Commerce CEO confident despite lagging job growth, high taxes
August 16, 2014
It wasn’t a very “chamber of commerce” thing to say. A chamber president is traditionally a community’s top salesperson. But here was a letter from Lawrence’s new chamber president and CEO that sure didn’t do much to sell Lawrence’s blue skies and green parks. Instead, Larry McElwain told chamber members earlier this month what he has learned thus far in his seven weeks on the job: The community’s taxes are high and rising, the city has few job opportunities and a high cost of living, some residents feel marginalized by community leaders, instability with the chamber’s CEO position has hindered the chamber’s ability to lead, and residents are hungry for community leadership to emerge.
Douglas County approves property tax increase for 2015 budget
August 13, 2014
County commissioners at their evening meeting unanimously approved a 3.914 mill increase in the county’s property tax rate for the 2015 budget, citing impacts from reduced state funding, a slowdown in mortgage activity, additional staffing for the county jail and several other issues.By Chad Lawhorn
Lawrence puts police headquarters sales-tax question on November ballot
August 12, 2014
Lawrence city commissioners unanimously approved a ballot question asking voters to approve a 0.2 percent sales tax to pay for a new police headquarters. Commissioners have left themselves a little less than 90 days to persuade voters to support the approximately $27 million project. By Chad Lawhorn
Alleged alcohol violations at The Cave still await hearing
August 11, 2014
In late March, city residents were angered to learn that their tax dollars were going to support a large nightclub that was accused of giving away alcohol and promoting an environment of alcohol abuse. Now, more than four months later, state regulators haven’t yet had a hearing on the allegations involving The Cave, the large nightclub inside The Oread hotel. Lawrence city officials also haven’t followed through on discussing a policy that would allow the city to revoke tax incentives for businesses that are found to be creating a nuisance with alcohol, drugs or other disorderly conduct. By Chad Lawhorn
Proposed shopping center near SLT faces uphill battle at City Hall
August 10, 2014
A majority of city commissioners recently told the Journal-World that they have concerns about a proposal to build a little more than 500,000 square feet of retail, restaurant and hotel space on a site just southeast of the South Lawrence Trafficway and Iowa Street interchange. By Chad Lawhorn
Lawhorn’s Lawrence: A strong foot and an open mind
08:40 p.m., August 9, 2014 Updated 02:36 p.m.
Off Tom Keegan and I go to test our open minds, our big toes and, it appears, the boundaries of fashion, by playing a round of FootGolf. By Chad Lawhorn
Lawrence, firefighters reach tentative agreement on 2 percent pay raise for 2015
August 7, 2014
Officials with the city and the union that represents city firefighters announced Thursday afternoon they’ve reached a tentative agreement on a 2 percent pay raise for union firefighters in 2015. That’s up from a 1 percent raise that commissioners had included in the 2015 budget, which was just approved by commissioners on Tuesday. By Chad Lawhorn

Full story list

Recent photos

Ten-year old snow shovelers Sean Ayers and Kyle Miller with Journal-World reporter Chad Lawhorn while he was out recently helping Lawrence residents dig out from the massive winter storms.

Mayor Bob Schumm fills up a city pick-up truck that was recently converted to run on compressed natural gas. Schumm said the city hopes to use the truck to gather data about whether the city should convert other parts of its vehicle fleet to compressed natural gas.

About 70 people attended a city forum at Free State High School on Wednesday, June 6, 2012, to discuss the proposed recreation complex in the northwest Lawrence. Scott Henderson addresses city officials with concerns about possible tax increases that the new center could cause.

A print from Chad Lawhorn's Dogs Playing Pool Art Collection. This one is entitled "That's not a Biscuit!"

A print from Chad Lawhorn's Dogs Playing Pool Art Collection. This one is entitled "Ruff-Roh!"

Full photo list