Scott Simon

Scott Simon is one of America's most admired writers and broadcasters. He has reported from all fifty states, five continents, and ten wars, from El Salvador to Sarajevo to Afghanistan and Iraq. His books have chronicled character and characters, in war and peace, sports and art, tragedy and comedy.

Simon's weekly show, Weekend Edition Saturday, has been called by the Washington Post, "the most literate, witty, moving, and just plain interesting news show on any dial," and by Brett Martin of Time-Out New York "the most eclectic, intelligent two hours of broadcasting on the airwaves." He has won every major award in broadcasting, including the Peabody, the Emmy, the Columbia-DuPont, the Ohio State Award, the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award, and the Sidney Hillman Award. Simon received the Presidential End Hunger Award for his coverage of the Ethiopian civil war and famine, and a special citation from the Peabody Awards for his weekly essays, which were cited as "consistently thoughtful, graceful, and challenging." He has also received the Barry M. Goldwater Award from the Human Rights Fund. Recently, he was awarded the Studs Terkel Award.

Simon has hosted many television specials, including the PBS's "State of Mind," "Voices of Vision," and "Need to Know." "The Paterson Project" won a national Emmy, as did his two-hour special from the Rio earth summit meeting. He co-anchored PBS's "Millennium 2000" coverage in concert with the BBC, and has co-hosted the televised Columbia-DuPont Awards. He also became familiar to viewers in Great Britain as host of the continuing BBC series, "Eyewitness," and a special on the White House press corps. He has appeared as a guest and commentator on all major networks, including BBC, NBC, CNN, and ESPN.

Simon has contributed articles to The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times Book Review, The Wall Street Journal, The Sunday Times of London, The Guardian, and Gourmet among other publications, and won a James Beard Award for his story, "Conflict Cuisine" in Gourmet. He has received numerous honorary degrees.

Sports Illustrated called his book Home and Away: Memoir of a Fan "extraordinary...uniformly superb...a memoir of such breadth and reach that it compares favorably with Fredrick Exley's A Fan's Notes." It was at the top of several non-fiction bestseller lists. His book, and Jackie Robinson and the Integration of Baseball, was Barnes and Nobles' Sports Book of the Year. His novel, Pretty Birds, the story of two teenage girls in Sarajevo during the siege, received rave reviews, Scott Turow calling it, "the most auspicious fiction debut by a journalist of note since Tom Wolfe's. . . always gripping, always tender, and often painfully funny. It is a marvel of technical finesse, close observation, and a perfectly pitched heart." Windy City, Simon's second novel, is a political comedy set in the Chicago City Council. Baby, We Were Meant for Each Other, an essay about the joys of adoption, was published in August 2010.

Simon's tweets to his 1.25 million Twitter followers from his mother's bedside in the summer of 2013 gathered major media attention around the world. He is completing a book on their last week together that will appear in time for Mother's Day 2015.

Simon is a native of Chicago and the son of comedian Ernie Simon and Patricia Lyons Simon. His hobbies are books, theater, ballet, British comedy, Mexican cooking and "bleeding for the Chicago Cubs." He appeared as Mother Ginger in the Ballet Austin production of The Nutcracker.

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript SCOTT SIMON, HOST: This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Scott Simon. The people of France are in shock and mourning today after a devastating night in Paris. A series of gun and bomb attacks killed more than a hundred people and injured scores. Authorities believe that eight people staged the attacks and they are all reportedly dead. But authorities are still searching for accomplices. The so-called Islamic State, or...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript SCOTT SIMON, HOST: The attacks overnight in Paris represent a shift in the way counterterrorism officials see ISIS. There have been a handful of attacks around the world that have been attributed to the group - shootings at a museum in Belgium, stabbings of police and military. This is different. NPR's counterterrorism correspondent Dina Temple-Raston joins us in our studios. Dina, thanks so much for being with us. DINA...

Jimmy Carter told a press conference he called on the morning of the day he would have the first radiation treatment on the cancer in his brain, "I'd like for the last guinea worm to die before I do." Mr. Carter was frank, funny and graceful speaking this week about his health, and his faith. But his remark about the guinea worm may have puzzled a few people. Guinea worm disease is a parasitic infection that people can get by drinking stagnant water that teems with tiny guinea worm larvae....

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript SCOTT SIMON, HOST: A horse is a horse, unless, of course, it's blue. Queen Elizabeth was on a state visit to Germany this week, and President Joachim Gauck presented her with a painting called "Horse In Royal Blue" by a popular German artist, Nicole Leidenfrost. It shows her majesty as a little girl sitting on a horse, the reins being held by her father, King George. The painting is interpretive. The faces of the horse and...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript SCOTT SIMON, HOST: One more British monarch may have been discovered in a parking lot. Just three years after the discovery of the remains of King Richard III, researchers have turned their attention to another even older missing ruler - Henry I. Philippa Langley, the historian who led the search for Richard's remains, believes the ruins of Reading Abbey - which Henry founded in 1121 - may be beneath the school playground...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/. Transcript SCOTT SIMON, HOST: There are large protests planned in Baltimore today over the death of Freddie Gray. He was the young black man who died from a spinal cord injuries sustained after police arrested him on April 12. One group called for a shutdown of the city. Baltimore's Police Commissioner Anthony Batts has admitted that police officers made mistakes in how they handled the arrest of Freddie Gray. He said officers should...

A lot of people saw their hopes and dreams fulfilled this week — for just a few hours. Carnegie Mellon University emailed about 800 people who had applied to graduate school to say, 'Congratulations, you're in.' They were — to quote the message of acceptance — "one of the select few" to be accepted into Carnegie Mellon's prestigious Master of Science in Computer Science program. A young woman in India who was accepted wrote on Facebook that she quit her job, bolstered by this act of faith in...

Pope Francis and the Vatican have recognized Oscar Romero as a martyr. This may move the name of the late archbishop of San Salvador a little further in the process that could one day make him a saint. But being deemed a martyr is also holy. It means the church believes his life can inspire people; Pope Francis has said Romero inspires him. Romero was considered a kindly, orthodox conservative parish priest when Pope Paul appointed him archbishop in 1977. He did not question El Salvador's...

Copyright 2015 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

Every Saturday just before our show begins I get on the public address system here to announce to our crew, "It's a beautiful day for a radio show. Let's do two today!" It's an admiring imitation of Ernie Banks, the Chicago Cubs Hall of Fame baseball player who died last night at the age of 83. Ernie used to say, especially in the long years of hot summers — including this last one, when the Cubs were stuck in last place — "It's a beautiful day for a ballgame. Let's play two today!" It became...

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