Pulitzer Prize Winning Journalist

Knowledge: St. Michael's College in Vermont.

Career notes: Began career 14 years ago as an intern at the Burlington (Vermont) Free Press. Writer at the St. Petersburg Times since 1983.

Why he does what he does: To tell stories about ordinary people doing extraordinary things. To make a difference. To avoid law school.


Distractions: Windsurfing, good poetry, bad movies.


Perspiration: That my boss will find out how much fun I'm having and stop paying me for it.

Favorite joke: "I can never remember jokes."


Question: How did you come up with the idea for "Final Indignities?"

Answer: I was outraged by some individual cases of lawyers ripping off estates and wondered, "If they are getting away with this, what are other people getting away with? And what can we do about it?'' (Jeff talks more about his series -- 242 Kb)

Q. Where were you when you found out you'd won the Pulitzer?

A. I was just heading out for lunch when my boss, Phil Gailey, came up to me with this amazing grin. He didn't have to say a word.

Q. With whom did you celebrate and how?

A. With my family and colleagues. The announcement came in very dramatic fashion, little shock waves of type rolling in over the AP wire. When the word came in at 3:19 p.m., it was bedlam. Wonderful bedlam.

Q. What will you do with your prize money?

A. I think my wife is making that decision.

Q. What advice do you have for future Pulitzer Prize Winners?

A. Don't TRY to win a Pulitzer. Just do something meaningful.

Shameless Plug

"My first book, 'Poison Mind,' will be published in September by William Morrow & Co. It is the true story of a Florida police woman who goes undercover to catch a brilliant killer."

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