Mike Reilley

Senior Lecturer • University of Illinois-Chicago • Chicago, IL
Last edited January 31, 2024

Mike Reilley is a senior lecturer at the University of Illinois-Chicago and founder of JournalistsToolbox.ai, a free website featuring AI tools, a newsletter and training videos. He’s the author of two books: “Data + Journalism” (Routledge, 2023) and “The Journalist’s Toolbox: A Guide to Digital Reporting and AI” (Routledge 2024).

Mike spent seven years teaching Google News Initiative and other digital and AI-driven tools to more than 14,500 journalists and educators in 425 trainings in 41 states. He also is co-founder of and trainer with Penny Press Digital LLC, a consulting and training company that has several clients, including Gannett. He has spoken at dozens of journalism conferences around the U.S., including ONA, NICAR, BEA/NAB, RTDNA, SPJ, and dozens of tech conferences and state press associations. When he’s not doing trainings, he teaches data and multimedia journalism at UIC, where he is a full-time faculty member.

A former reporter at the LA Times and web editor at the Chicago Tribune, Mike served for 13 years as a faculty member at Northwestern, Arizona State University and DePaul University, teaching digital journalism to hundreds of students and professional journalists. An early adopter of the web, he is one of the 11 founding editors of ChicagoTribune.com.

He holds journalism degrees from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (undergrad) and Northwestern University (masters). Mike also runs the Chicago data-driven news site The Red Line Project.