Jack Loftis

Jack Loftis during the time he played Hillsboro High School football
  Jack Loftis during the time he played Hillsboro High School football

Jack Loftis was born in 1934 in Hillsboro, where he attended Rose Hill Elementary and graduated from Hillsboro High School.  While in high school, he was a center and kicker of the Hillsboro Eagles football team.

Two years later, the team went to the Class AA state finals.  Loftis was working as a sportswriter for the Hillsboro Evening Mirror while attending Baylor University, and the experience of covering that season unveiled a lifelong love and appreciation for the newspaper profession. Five years after graduation, he returned home as editor of his hometown newspaper.

Texas Inauguration 1995

By 1965 he had moved to the Houston Chronicle as a copy editor, and soon, as editor of Texas Magazine, the newspaper’s Sunday rotogravure [more] section. After a series of promotions, he became editor of the newspaper in 1987, a position he held for fifteen years. Under his leadership, the Chronicle won hundreds of local, state, and national journalism awards, and twice was a finalist in the Pulitzer Prize competition.

Family Circus Comic Strip
  Family Circus Comic Strip for the
100th Birthday of the Houston Chronicle

Loftis served twice as a Pulitzer Prize juror, judging Featured Writing in 1999 and Editorial Cartoons the following year. His long-time devotion to newspaper comics led him to be accepted into the National Cartoonists Society in 2003.

Jack’s friend and confidant Lt. Governor Bob Bullock requested that he serve as honorary chair of the 1995 Texas Inaugural Committee, where Bullock was sworn in for his second term, and George W. Bush was sworn in for his first term as governor of Texas.

Jack Loftis and President Jimmy Carter
President Jimmy Carter and Jack Loftis  

Going back to the days when the High School Girls’ Basketball League of Texas state championship was held in Hillsboro, Jack was always interested in girls’ basketball.  In 1999, he was honored by the Texas Girls’ Coaches Association for "outstanding contribution to girls’ athletics in Texas."

During his career in journalism, Jack's work brought him in contact with many famous people, including United States Presidents Jimmy Carter, George H. W. Bush, and George W. Bush.

True Texas Tales of the People, Places, and Events of Hill County, Texas