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John U. Bacon has worked nearly three decades as a writer, a
public speaker, and a college instructor, winning awards for all three. Bacon earned an honors degree in history (“pre-unemployment”)
from the University of Michigan in 1986, and a Master’s in Education in 1994. In
2005-06, the Knight-Wallace Journalism Fellowship named him the first recipient
of the Benny Friedman Fellowship for Sports Journalism. He started his journalism career covering high school sports
for The Ann Arbor News, and then wrote a light-hearted
lifestyle column before becoming the Sunday sports
feature writer for The Detroit News in 1995. He earned
numerous state and national awards for his work, including “Notable Sports
Writing” in The Best American Sports Writing in 1998 and 2000. After Bacon covered the 1998 Nagano Olympics, he moved from the
sports page to the Sunday front page, roaming
the Great Lakes State finding fresh features, then left the paper in 1999 to
free-lance for some two dozen national publications, including stories on
Formula One racing in Australia for The New York Times, on
Japanese hockey for ESPN Magazine, and on Hemingway’s
Michigan summer home for Time.
His newest title, released September 2021, is Let Them Lead: Unexpected Lessons in Leadership from America’s Worst High School Hockey Team.
- Learn about John U. Bacon's career as a journalist, author, coach and teacher.
- Reflect on motivational stories to continue pushing forward in the field.