Sara Shepherd

KU reporter

Photo of Sara Shepherd

I'm the Journal-World's Kansas University and higher education reporter. Most of my time is (easily) spent covering all things newsworthy happening on KU's 25,000-student main campus here in Lawrence — from unusual or groundbreaking research, to multi-million dollar construction projects, to policies affecting student safety or academic success. I also cover the Kansas Board of Regents in Topeka, Haskell Indian Nations University (the country's sole federally run four-year university, attended by tribe members from across the United States) in Lawrence, plus highlights from the KU Medical Center and KU Hospital in Kansas City, Kan.

For KU news, find all the Journal-World's recent stories at, check out my Heard on the Hill blog, and follow @LJW_KU on Twitter. Follow me on Twitter @saramarieshep.

Previously, I was a crime and courts reporter for The Kansas City Star, where I covered untimely death or destruction most every day for a few years, everything from quadruple homicides to massive chemical fires. I’ve also covered suburban city government and schools for The Star and The Shawnee Dispatch, a weekly paper just up the road. My first beat at the Journal-World was features, covering food, arts and entertainment.

I'm originally from Emporia, but my family goes way back in Lawrence and at KU. I had ancestors living here when William Quantrill sacked the town in 1863 (they survived the massacre, probably thanks to being politically insignificant German immigrants). I’m also a fourth-generation KU grad, led by my great grandfather, who got his undergraduate and law degrees from KU. I majored in journalism, art history and French, and in case any of you fellow KU journos were wondering, my reporting beat on The University Daily Kansan was campus police. I'm occasionally asked whether covering the KU beat means I get in free to basketball games. It does not. My most covet-worthy power as KU reporter is a campus parking pass.

To reach me, call 785-832-7187 or send email to

Recent Stories

Church shootings refresh Confederate flag debate that inspired KU prof's 2004 film

When Kevin Willmott wrote and directed the mockumentary film “C.S.A.: The Confederate States of America,” which screened at the 2004 Sundance Film Festival, he knew it would be relevant for a long time. Sure enough. By Sara Shepherd

Best Women's Clothing Store | Best of Lawrence 2015 | Shopping

Earlier this year, reported that nationwide Kohl’s was women’s favorite place to shop for clothing and has been for several years now.

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Best Restaurant to Watch a Game | Best of Lawrence 2015 | Food & Dining

If you thought Buffalo Wild Wings was a good place to watch a game at its former location, you should see it now.

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Best Breakfast Spot | Best of Lawrence 2015 | Food & Dining

As breakfast out and weekend brunch have exploded in popularity, so, too, have out-of-the-box creations on morning menus. At the same time — perhaps with breakfast more than any other meal — the basics still reign. The Roost tries to offer the best of both worlds.

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Best Overall Restaurant | Best of Lawrence 2015 | Food & Dining

Free State Brewing Company isn’t just a good restaurant — it’s a Lawrence tradition.

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Best Pizza | Best of Lawrence 2015 | Food & Dining

Even big cities here or abroad would be hard-pressed to claim anything quite like the Italy-meets-Midwest farmhouse pies at Limestone pizza + kitchen + bar, which opened in April 2014.

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Best KU Souvenir Store | Best of Lawrence 2015 | Shopping

The Kansas University souvenir market isn’t just for T-shirts anymore. One step inside Kansas Sampler in downtown Lawrence makes that obvious.

Newly acquired Bloch painting offers warmth with hint of mystery

A newly acquired painting by one of Lawrence’s more famous past residents — at least in the art world — is warming up the contemporary gallery at the Spencer Museum of Art. “Summer” by Albert Bloch is now on display in the 20/21 Gallery. By Sara Shepherd

Federal judge OKs Kansas same-sex marriage; stays order pending appeal

A federal judge in Kansas City, Kan., issued a preliminary injunction Tuesday barring state officials from refusing to grant marriage licenses to same-sex couples.

Off the Beaten Plate: DaVinci Cibo at Cibo Sano

Like an Italian burrito.

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