435 N. Michigan Ave.
Chicago, IL
Bill Ruthhart
City Hall reporter
My Role

Bill Ruthhart is a reporter for the Chicago Tribune who covers Mayor Rahm Emanuel's administration and City Hall. Some of the topics Ruthhart has covered include: The Emanuel administration's close coordination with producers to set up scenes in the CNN documentary "Chicagoland," Emanuel's use of taxpayer money to pay for trips that mix politics with city business and how some of the mayor's plans -- on issues ranging from infrastructure to food deserts -- have not come to fruition.

Prior to moving to the City Hall beat in April 2013, Ruthhart worked as a watchdog reporter for the newspaper, focusing on government and political coverage. He wrote extensively about Illinois state agencies, from uncovering repeated failures at the state’s Department of Children and Family Services to exposing revenue and regulatory shortcomings in Illinois’ various gambling expansion proposals. Ruthhart also contributed to the Tribune’s political coverage, writing about the state’s 2012 Congressional races and the 2013 special election to replace convicted former Congressman Jesse Jackson, Jr.

My Biography

In 2014, Ruthhart's coverage of Mayor Rahm Emanuel was awarded 1st place for government beat reporting by the Illinois Press Association.

In 2013, Ruthhart and colleague Christy Gutowski were awarded the Chicago Headline Club's 2013 Lisagor Award for Excellence in Public Interest Reporting for their yearlong series of stories detailing child abuse deaths and the repeated failures of the state’s child welfare agency in protecting children and following federal mandates. The series also won the Child Welfare League of America’s Anna Quindlen Award and first place for news reporting series from the Illinois Press Association.

Prior to arriving at the Tribune in October 2010, Ruthhart worked as a reporter at The Indianapolis Star for more than eight years, where he covered the state legislature, state agencies and most of Gov. Mitch Daniels’ two terms in office. In 2008, Ruthhart worked much of the year from his car, criss-crossing the state to cover Indiana’s presidential primary and general elections.

In 2009, Ruthhart was named the state’s best government reporter by the Indiana chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists for stories that revealed state and federal investigations into hundreds of questionable, high-risk investment practices that lost millions in insurance benefits for Indiana teachers. Ruthhart also was recognized for stories that revealed backroom efforts to kill legislation that would crackdown on animal abuse and the state’s so-called puppy mills.

Ruthhart is a 2002 graduate of Eastern Illinois University and a product of the Eugene C. Pulliam Fellowship in Indianapolis. He is a native of Rock Island, IL and lives on Chicago’s North Side.