November 10, 2009
Jeffrey Zaslow is a columnist for The Wall Street Journal and co-author of the current international bestseller “The Last Lecture,” which has been selected as Indiana State’s Summer Reading program.
Zaslow’s column, “Moving On,” focuses on life transitions and often attracts wide media interest. That was certainly the case in September 2007 after he attended the final lecture of Carnegie Mellon Professor Randy Pausch. His column about the talk sparked a worldwide phenomenon. Tens of millions of people have since viewed footage of the lecture on the Internet and on TV.
“The Last Lecture” is now being translated into 36 languages, is a No. 1 New York Times best-seller and has topped best-seller lists around the world. There are more than four million copies in print in the U.S. alone.
Zaslow was drawn to the story of Randy Pausch because he has created a beat unlike almost any other in journalism. While The Wall Street Journal covers the heart of the financial world, Zaslow tends to the hearts of its readers. There are a thousand emotionally charged transitions that people face in their lives, and most come without a roadmap. That’s the territory of his column -- from finding a spouse to losing a job, from a child’s first crush to an old person’s last wishes.
In 2003 and 2005, Zaslow's column was named the best general-interest column in a newspaper with over 100,000 circulation by the National Society of Newspaper Columnists. In 2008, he received the Distinguished Column Writing Award from the New York Newspaper Publishers Association.
In 2000, Zaslow received the Will Rogers Humanitarian Award, given to a newspaper columnist who exemplifies the ideals and public service work of the noted humorist and columnist. He was honored for using his column to run programs that benefited 47,000 disadvantaged Chicago children. His annual singles party for charity, Zazz Bash, drew 7,000 readers a year and resulted in 78 marriages.
His latest book, “The Girls from Ames,” is a moving tribute to female friendships, and an inspiring true story of 11 girls and the ten women they became.
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