Thabo Leshilo is a well recognized journalist in the print media sector as he has held top positions such as Editor- in- Chief in various newspaper organisations ranging from the Sowetan newspaper to the Business Times. He is also praised for his advocacy towards press freedom in South Africa. For his great efforts he has been acknowledged and rewarded a number of prestigious awards. His career has seen his involvement in various programmes in South Africa and abroad.
Thabo Leshilo was born on 10 November 1963(1), he is married to Mapeu and they have three children. During his spare time he enjoys playing soccer, listening to Jazz, and playing Golf (5). He attained his B.A degree in Politics and Public Administration from Limpopo University, South Africa. He currently lives in Northcliff, Johannesburg (4).
He began his career as a trainee reporter at the Argus Cadet School in 1989 and he later joined The Star. He was awarded a mid career fellowship in Florida, USA in 1993, which comprises of working on the Daytona Beach News Journal. In 2004 he was appointed as Editor-in-Chief of the Sunday World which is situated in Johannesburg, and in that same year he was also appointed as Editor-in-Chief of the Sowetan Newspaper which also operates in Johannesburg. Furthermore in 2004 he was appointed as Editor of the Business Times, as well as Pretoria News. In addition, he served as a Night Editor and Assistant Editor of the Business Report. He has recently been appointed as the public editor for Avusa Media's stable of print titles, which includes the Sowetan, Sunday World and Sunday Times (2).
Recognitions and awards
As a result of his hard work he received the Sanlam Financial Journalist of the Year award (Small Business Category), and became the first black person to receive the Sanlam Business Journalist of the Year award (2).
Other professional activities
Leshilo recently took part in the Nieman fellowship programme at Harvard which is the oldest and most prestigious mid-career programme for journalists in the world (5), and has returned to South Africa to start a new job (1). He is a passionate activist for press freedom and Leshilo is also one of the leaders of the South African National Editors' Forum(5).