John Archibald (born April 5, 1963 in Alabaster) is a columnist for the Alabama Media Group, writing three columns per week on Birmingham issues for the Birmingham News and AL.com and exploring "human rights issues and reader engagement," as part of the company's "Reckon" multimedia feature.
Archibald is the son of Methodist minister Robert Archibald Jr. His family moved to Birmingham from Decatur while John was in grade school. He is a graduate of Banks High School, and completed a bachelor's degree in journalism at the University of Alabama in 1986. During one summer he worked as a stagehand and stunt performer at the Circus World theme park in Orlando, Florida.
Archibald began working for the News in the 1980s. He has been a government reporter, investigative reporter and database editor for the paper before being assigned his current column in 2004. Archibald won a Pulitzer Prize for Commentary in 2018, after which he took a sabbatical from his regular column to complete a family memoir, Shaking the Gates of Hell. In 2020 he was awarded a Nieman Foundation fellowship at Harvard University in order to study how media stories shape public perceptions of crime and a "culture of fear".
Archibald's play, "Pink Clouds" premiered at Red Mountain Theatre in September 2022. In 2023 he was awarded another Pulitzer Prize, along with Ashley Remkus, Challen Stephens, and his son, Ramsey Archibald for reporting on police abuses in Brookside.
Archibald and his wife, Alecia have three children: Drew, Ramsey and Mamie.
- Archibald, John (2021) Shaking the Gates of Hell: A Search for Family and Truth in the Wake of the Civil Rights Revolution Knopf. ISBN 9780525658115
- Archibald, John (July 7, 2009) "I died for Michael Jackson, but he was bored." The Birmingham News
- Sims, Bob (April 16, 2018) "AL.com's John Archibald wins 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Commentary." The Birmingham News
- Swain, Sharron Mendel (April 13, 2021) "We asked John Archibald about his new book, plays + Bham faves—here's what he said." Bham Now
- "AL.com wins Pulitzer Prize in Local Reporting on Brookside: Read the winning work." (May 8, 2023) AL.com