"A Reporter's Journey: How I learned to tell a good story and how Title IX made it possible
Mar 08, 2022
Melissa Isaacson
"A Reporter's Journey: How I learned to tell a good story and how Title IX made it possible


Melissa was a longtime sportswriter for the Chicago Tribune, where she was the first woman to be the principal beat writer on the Bulls and Bears, as well as the first woman general columnist.  She is now a full-time faculty member at Northwestern's Medill School of Journalism.  Melissa is also the author of three books, the latest,  "State: a Team, a Triumph, a Transformation" is the coming-of-age story of the first generation of Title IX girls and specifically her 1979 Niles West basketball team, one of the first girls state championship teams in Illinois.

Join us at Rotary while Melissa takes us through a nearly 40-year career in sports journalism made possible by a law enacted 50 years ago this summer.  She will talk about her Book "State," inspired by one of the first girls state basketball champions in the state of Illinois years; her years as a sportswriter in Chicago covering the Bulls and Bears, and how her life has been changed by Title IX. Bio: Melissa Isaacson has been a fixture on the Chicago sports media landscape for more than 30 years. An award-winning sports writer and author currently on the faculty of Northwestern's Medill School of Journalism, her most recent book "State: A Team, a Triumph, a Transformation," was featured in the New York Times and L.A. Times Best-of-2019 Holiday Gift Guides, in "Sports Illustrated" and on NBC's "Today Show."

Isaacson was the Chicago Tribune’s first woman general sports columnist and the first woman principal beat writer to cover the Bulls and Bears, most notably the Michael Jordan–led Bulls over their six NBA titles.She was interviewed on the documentary "The Last Dance," seen this summer. Among other publications, she has been on the staffs of the Orlando Sentinel, USA Today and ESPN.com, covering every major U.S. sports championship, Grand Slam tennis tournaments and the Summer and Winter Olympic Games. The author of three books, including "Transition Game: An Inside Look at Life with the Chicago Bulls" and "Sweet Lou: Lou Piniella, A Life in Baseball,"  her latest book "State" -- published in 2019 and out in audiobook and paperback -- chronicles Title IX's first-generation and the tale of her Niles West High School team's 1979 Illinois girls basketball state championship. It is currently included in Glenbrook North's freshman curriculum and in classrooms throughout the Chicago-area.