«Class of 2015

Donna Borak

Donna Borak ('15)

Federal reserve reporter, American Banker, Washington, D.C.
dborak@stanford.edu, @donnaborak

Donna Borak focused on how to create a delightful and intelligent news experience for users through the sound of their own voice. Through classes at Stanford’s Hasso Plattner Institute of Design (the d.school) and the Graduate School of Business, she immersed herself in design thinking, entrepreneurship and creativity and innovation. As a fellow, she created an early stage prototype of Walter, an intelligent personal assistant that users can talk to about the news through a natural language user interface.

Journalism Challenge

Q: How can we use artificial intelligence to elevate the user experience?

A: Let’s Sirify the news experience! Ask questions. Control how and when the news is delivered. All through the sound of your own voice.

Learn more about this Journalism Challenge »

Posts by Donna


Journalism has much to gain from empathy research

One of the techniques of doing empathy research is to identify places facing problems similar to the one you are addressing. We explored healthy eating habits and regular exercise at the gym in rethinking the news ecosystem.

Project Syria Reflection Wall

On the frontline of media’s future with a trip down virtual reality lane

Going to this year’s Sundance Film Festival’s New Frontier exhibition hall on virtual reality, you cannot help but feel as if you are seated at the front row of the future of journalism.

About Donna

Donna Borak has spent the last 10 years covering the intersection of business and policy in Washington across a number of industries from international trade, defense and banking. Most recently, she was the Federal Reserve reporter for the American Banker. For the last four-and-half years, she has reported on the aftermath of the 2008-2009 financial crisis and its lead up to the largest regulatory overhaul of the U.S. and global financial system. Previously, she was a business reporter covering the defense industry for The Associated Press in Washington. She wrote about the billions of dollars being spent by the Pentagon during the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan on armored vehicles and military aircraft. Borak was also nominated for an Associated Press Managing Editors award for her work on the Walter Reed Medical Center scandal. She began her career as a business reporter for United Press International, where she covered the World Bank, International Monetary Fund, and international trade. She is conversant in Arabic, and has a master’s degree in journalism from Boston University and bachelor’s degree. from Lehigh University in cognitive science and philosophy.

Information on this page is from the fellowship year.