Sports journalist, author and Stanford lecturer Gary M. Pomerantz discusses new book about 1970s Pittsburgh Steelers

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Gary M. Pomerantz

Gary M. Pomerantz

From covering college basketball and the National Football League with The Washington Post to coaching youth teams for nearly two decades, Gary M. Pomerantz (@garympomerantz) has long sported an affinity for athletics.

Pomerantz graduated from U.C. Berkeley with a bachelor’s degree in history before embarking on a 17-year journey as a daily journalist, first at The Washington Post and later at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

The American Journalism Review has recognized Pomerantz “among a class of reporters who combine the tenacity of investigative reporting with the deft touch of feature writers.” He has amassed a number of accolades including the Ernie Pyle Award, the nation’s top honor for human interest writing.

Their Life’s Work, Pomerantz’ fifth and newest book, explores the Pittsburgh Steelers’ dynasty in the 1970s. He met the players of that formidable team while covering an assignment as a 20-year-old sportswriting intern. Over the past few years, Pomerantz conducted more than 200 interviews in an effort to examine the game’s lasting effects on those players’ lives across the decades.

“In the early Eighties I saw players who were physical marvels breaking down on the field with horrible injuries, and carted off,” Pomerantz said. “I wondered at the time, ‘What will life be like for these guys when they are sixty?’”

His other books cover a broad spectrum of topics from Wilt Chamberlain’s 100-point game to a multi-generational account of Atlanta and its racial conscience.


Pomerantz has appeared on many television and radio programs ranging from ESPN’s “Outside the Lines” to National Public Radio’s “Morning Edition,” “All Things Considered” and “Talk of the Nation.”

He was named as a Journalism Fellow at the University of Michigan in 1987-1988 and later served as Distinguished Visiting Professor of Journalism at Emory University in Atlanta from 1999-2001.

For the past seven years, Pomerantz has served as a Visiting Lecturer at Stanford. He teaches the Sports Journalism class.

When not covering or coaching sports, Pomerantz enjoys playing them. He spent seven years as an infielder on the Mooseheads, three-time Over-40 softball champions of Corte Madera, Calif.

Where Peachtree Meets Sweet Auburn (1996)
Nine Minutes, Twenty Seconds (2001)
WILT, 1962 (2005)
The Devil’s Tickets (2009)
Their Life’s Work (2013)

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