He’s been listed among America’s best young journalists as a Livingston Awards finalist four out of the last five years, and in 2018, he was named the top newspaper reporter in Texas. That same year, his work covering Hurricane Harvey for the Houston Chronicle was part of a package of stories recognized as a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in breaking news reporting.
His investigative work following a deadly Navy helicopter crash in 2014 — including a long-form narrative and TV segment that appeared on NBC News — led to the grounding of more than 150 helicopters and changes to improve safety. The reporting has since been adapted for a full-length documentary and an episode of Reveal.
His work has been co-published with NBC, ProPublica and The Investigative Reporting Program at UC Berkeley, where he completed a yearlong reporting fellowship.
Mike lives in Houston with his wife and four children.
“(Mike Hixenbaugh’s) work does several remarkable things: It strives to draw meaning from events, and it does this subtly. It embraces that which flummoxes many reporters: shades of gray. It uses telling detail to underscore theme. It lets mystery drive readers through a story, holding back the answer to a question he just knows is in their mind.” – Jan Winburn, CNN enterprise editor
“Mike Hixenbaugh’s reporting is enlightening, inspiring and heartbreaking at the same time. His stories capture — with compassion and precision — the winding path of healing, the stress of medical uncertainty and a health care system ill-equipped to handle the complexity of the human experience.” – Rebecca Blatt, assistant dean of the Walter Cronkite School of Journalism and Mass Communication at Arizona State University
“Mike Hixenbaugh’s writing is alive — all action verbs and fresh metaphors. He treats his stories like action movies: He blows up something in the lead then builds the suspense throughout the narrative, pulling you along to the very end.” – Carlos Frias, Miami Herald