Michael Jonas

Executive Editor, CommonWealth

About Michael Jonas

Michael Jonas has worked in journalism in Massachusetts since the early 1980s. Before joining the CommonWealth staff in early 2001, he was a contributing writer for the magazine for two years. His cover story in CommonWealth's Fall 1999 issue on Boston youth outreach workers was selected for a PASS (Prevention for a Safer Society) Award from the National Council on Crime and Delinquency.

Michael got his start in journalism at the Dorchester Community News, a community newspaper serving Boston's largest neighborhood, where he covered a range of urban issues. Since the late 1980s, he has been a regular contributor to the Boston Globe. For 15 years he wrote a weekly column on local politics for the Boston Sunday Globe's City Weekly section.

Michael has also worked in broadcast journalism. In 1989, he was a co-producer for "The AIDS Quarterly," a national PBS series produced by WGBH-TV in Boston, and in the early 1990s, he worked as a producer for "Our Times," a weekly magazine program on WHDH-TV (Ch. 7) in Boston.

Michael lives in Dorchester with his wife and their two daughters.

About Michael Jonas

Michael Jonas has worked in journalism in Massachusetts since the early 1980s. Before joining the CommonWealth staff in early 2001, he was a contributing writer for the magazine for two years. His cover story in CommonWealth's Fall 1999 issue on Boston youth outreach workers was selected for a PASS (Prevention for a Safer Society) Award from the National Council on Crime and Delinquency.

Michael got his start in journalism at the Dorchester Community News, a community newspaper serving Boston's largest neighborhood, where he covered a range of urban issues. Since the late 1980s, he has been a regular contributor to the Boston Globe. For 15 years he wrote a weekly column on local politics for the Boston Sunday Globe's City Weekly section.

Michael has also worked in broadcast journalism. In 1989, he was a co-producer for "The AIDS Quarterly," a national PBS series produced by WGBH-TV in Boston, and in the early 1990s, he worked as a producer for "Our Times," a weekly magazine program on WHDH-TV (Ch. 7) in Boston.

Michael lives in Dorchester with his wife and their two daughters.

Stories by Michael Jonas

Legislators call for broader criminal justice reform

Legislators call for broader criminal justice reform

State needs to seize the opportunity for change, say lawmakers

LAWMAKERS GATHERED OUTSIDE the House chamber Tuesday to declare their commitment to wide-ranging criminal justice reforms, further evidence of a push on Beacon Hill for changes that go beyond a consensus bill rolled out by Gov. Charlie Baker in February. “We are all here united today because we believe that this session is an opportunity(...)

Read More »

Mass. educator named National Teacher of the Year

Mass. educator named National Teacher of the Year

Dorchester charter school humanities instructor wins top teaching award

SYDNEY CHAFFEE, a 9th grade humanities teacher at a Dorchester charter school, is not just a good teacher, she is, by at least one measure, the best one in the country. Chaffee was named National Teacher of the Year on Thursday, the first time a Massachusetts educator has won the award in the 65 years(...)

Read More »

Moulton pushes North-South Rail Link

Moulton pushes North-South Rail Link

Congressman calls it a ‘transformative’ project for 21st century

IT’S BEEN CALLED pie-in-the-sky by some. Others have visions – more accurately, nightmares – of another Big Dig that turns downtown Boston upside down for years and soaks public coffers with wild cost overruns. US Rep. Seth Moulton has a very different way of describing the North-South Rail Link, which would connect Boston’s two commuter(...)

Read More »

Incoming UMass Boston chief says budget process ‘broken’

Incoming UMass Boston chief says budget process ‘broken’

Mills says campus faces hard choices; Motley says he leaves with no regrets

BARRY MILLS, who is slated to take the reins as interim chancellor at the University of Massachusetts Boston, painted a dire picture of finances and operations at the campus, saying the budget process is broken and that tough choices lie ahead for the school. Mills spoke at meeting of the UMass board of trustees where(...)

Read More »

Voc-tech tension

Voc-tech tension

Massachusetts vocational schools are a big success story, but are they shutting out those who might need them most?

Photographs by Mark Ostow KELSEY CLARK, A SENIOR at Greater New Bedford Regional Vocational Technical High School, is showing a visitor work from her graphic design portfolio. There is a pointillism-style poster she drew for assignment to promote a rock concert (she says it left her practically drawing dots in her sleep). A brightly colored(...)

Read More »

For Arroyo, probate job no soft landing pad

For Arroyo, probate job no soft landing pad

Controversy renews questions about electing obscure county officials

This wasn’t how the story was supposed to end. When Felix Arroyo was elected Suffolk County Register of Probate in 2014, the former Boston city councilor was supposed to sail off into obscurity, collecting a six-figure salary for a post no one pays attention to and then enjoying the spoils of a nice public pension(...)

Read More »

State leaders unveil bill aimed at cutting recidivism

State leaders unveil bill aimed at cutting recidivism

Officials divided on further changes, Gants urges repeal of most mandatory minimums

STATE LEADERS UNVEILED long-awaited legislation Tuesday aimed at reducing recidivism rates in the criminal justice system. But whether the bill tackles the most pressing issue facing the system or simply marks a good first step in what should be a more sweeping reform process depends on which leader is speaking. That divide is likely to(...)

Read More »

Sentencing commission backs repeal of mandatory minimums

Sentencing commission backs repeal of mandatory minimums

Votes add to push for more sweeping criminal justice reform

IN ANOTHER SIGN of support for broad criminal justice reform, the Massachusetts Sentencing Commission voted to recommend abolition of mandatory minimum sentences for all crimes except murder. The move comes as state leaders are split on the best way to revamp criminal justice policies. At a Jan. 18 meeting of the sentencing commission, members voted(...)

Read More »

Senators outline broad criminal justice reform agenda

Senators outline broad criminal justice reform agenda

Lawmakers look to broaden scope beyond pending report

SAYING THE TIME is right for the state to take a look at sweeping criminal justice reforms, a group of Democratic state senators is urging the Legislature to take up bills addressing everything from mandatory minimum drug sentences to fines and fees that lawmakers say are unfairly leading some people to spend time behind bars(...)

Read More »

Massie considering Democratic run for governor

Massie considering Democratic run for governor

One-time lieutenant governor nominee says Baker has been too timid in face of Trump threats

BOB MASSIE, A veteran social justice activist who ran for lieutenant governor more than two decades ago, says he’s seriously weighing a run for governor in 2018. “I’m giving it very strong consideration,” said Massie, a Democrat. “We are a critical moment in the history of the United States and the life of planet that(...)

Read More »