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St. Louis Sports Editor Leaves for ESPN

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Friday, October 26, 2007

Larry Starks to Be Network's News Editor for NBA

Larry Starks, one of only seven African American sports editors at mainstream daily newspapers, has resigned as an assistant managing editor of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch to take a job at ESPN, he told friends and colleagues on Friday.



His move comes a month after seven other black journalists left the paper as the Post-Dispatch offered voluntary early retirements.

"I have resigned as sports editor in St. Louis to move to ESPN in Bristol, Conn. I've been in the Midwest, South, West. Now it's time to try that East Coast living," Starks wrote to colleagues.

"In my new gig, I will be the NBA News Editor. You all know how much I love the NBA, so this gig is right up my alley. I will be in charge of editorial decisions on ESPN and ABC's broadcasts. This is a job I'm really looking forward to."

Starks is president of the Greater St. Louis Association of Black Journalists and a 2005 graduate of the Maynard Institute's management program at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism.

In 2005, he gave this short biography to the Associated Press Sports Editors:

"Began career in 1985 as sports editor of a twice-weekly in Downers Grove, Ill., then went to work as a preps writer for the Quincy (Ill.) Herald-Whig. After a one-year stint in Quincy, moved on to Pasadena (Calif.) Star-News, where I covered the Raiders and Lakers. From there, went to the Los Angeles Daily News to cover colleges, to the National Sports Daily to cover the L.A. Clippers and then the San Diego Padres. After the National folded, I went to the Memphis Commercial Appeal where I covered everything from preps to minor league hockey and baseball to colleges. Left Memphis in 1998 and joined the Post-Dispatch as a copy editor, later became the weekend sports editor and then AME/Sports."

ESPN has proved a welcoming home for a number of black newspaper journalists. Offering opportunities at a television and radio network, a Web site and a magazine as newspapers cut back, it has hired Stephen A. Smith of the Philadelphia Inquirer, J.A. Adande of the Los Angeles Times, Jemele Hill of the Orlando Sentinel, Howard Bryant of the Washington Post, Dwayne Bray of the Dallas Morning News, Chris Broussard of the New York Times and Claire Smith of the Philadelphia Inquirer, nearly all in recent months. Jeffrey Chadiha left Sports Illustrated for ESPN in April and the Washington Post's Michael Wilbon has become a staple on "Pardon the Interruption" with Post colleague Tony Kornheiser. Rob King, who left the Philadelphia Inquirer for ESPN three years ago, now is editor-in-chief of

Remaining African American top sports editors are Leon Carter at the New York Daily News, Larry Graham at the Lima (Ohio) News, Garry Howard at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Patricia Mays at the Press-Enterprise in Riverside, Calif., L.C. Johnson of the Montgomery (Ala.) Advertiser and Alan Whitt at the Nashville Tennessean, senior editor whose jurisdiction includes sports. [Number of African American sports editors updated on Nov. 1.]

Richard Prince's Journal-isms originates from Washington and is published Monday, Wednesday and Friday. It began in print before most of us knew what the Internet was, and it would like to be referred to as a "column." For newcomers: The words in blue (on most computers) are links leading to more information. The Web site provides passwords and user names to some registration-only news sites, but use may be illegal in some states. Any views expressed in the column are those of the person or organization quoted and not those of any other entity.

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