10 Things You Need To Know About 24-Year-Old Pulitzer Prize Winner Sara Ganim
Ganim celebrates her win.
1. She broke the news that Sandusky was under investigation for allegedly molesting boys.
Here’s her very first story on the now-disgraced Penn State coach, published on March 31, 2011 in the Harrisburg, PA “Patriot-News.” This would become one of the biggest stories of the year.
She told MarketWatch last fall that working at a local paper helped her break the Sandusky story: “You can credit the Patriot-News with giving me the time a reporter needs to cover this kind of story. You don’t have that kind of flexibility any more.”
2. She’s eschewed blogging — which many writers her age turn to — in favor of working at local papers.
Not only did Ganim break the Sandusky story for the local “Patriot-News,” she also did award-winning work for the “Centre Daily Times,” based in State College, PA.
3. Her less-serious stories include coverage of crock pots owned by crack pots.
As a crime reporter for the “Patriot-News,” Ganim reported on a wide variety of topics. One 2011 headline: “Woman turns in friend for keeping crock pot too long after Super Bowl party.” Here’s the entirety of that story:
A Middletown woman reported to Lower Swatara Township police Thursday that she still hasn’t been able to pick up a $150 crock pot she left at a friend’s house after a Super Bowl party.
The woman told police the friend is refusing to return the slow-cooker.
4. She’s been reporting since she was 15.
Ganim worked at Florida’s “Sun Sentinel” while still in high school, majored in journalism at Penn State, graduated in three years, and was working at the “Centre Daily Times” by 2007. She started covering the Sandusky story at 22. At age 24, she’s already on her third reporting gig.
Ganim and the “Patriot-News” staff celebrate.
5. She’s not the youngest Pulitzer winner ever, but she is the second-youngest.
The youngest ever was apparently 23-year-old Jackie Crosby, who won in 1985.
6. She was the youngest ever to win the Sidney Award for socially-conscious journalism.
7. A lot of people are jealous of her.
Here are just a few:
Sara Ganim (very deservedly) wins a Pulitzer Prize at age 24. *searches for a building to go jump off of*
â€” Bart Hubbuch (@NYPost_Hubbuch) April 16, 2012
Well shit, now I feel unaccomplished. RT @MySecondEmpire Sara Ganim wins a Pulitzer at 24.
â€” Michell Eloy (@michellreloy) April 16, 2012
When I was a 24-year-old sports writer, I wrote a column AS Borat. It did not win a Pulitzer. Way to go Sara Ganim (@sganim). Well done.
â€” Matt Calkins (@blazerbanter) April 16, 2012
8. She and “Girls” creator Lena Dunham are almost the same age — Dunham is 25.
Some people find this interesting:
I prefer to think of 24-y-o Harrisburg, Pa. reporter Sara Ganim’s Pulitzer win as a big “yeah, no” to Lena Dunham.
â€” Matt Creamer (@matt_creamer) April 16, 2012
Others less so:
Someone is composing a Sara Ganim vs. Lena Dunham think piece as we speak. I urge that person: reconsider.
â€” Adam Sternbergh (@sternbergh) April 16, 2012
9. In addition to reporting for the “Patriot-News,” she’s now a CNN contributor.
Here she is discussing witness Mike McQueary’s conflicting statements about the Sandusky case:
10. She’s still hard at work — reporting!
Her latest story, dated yesterday, examines the life of “missing DA” Ray Gricar, who declined to press charges against Jerry Sandusky, then disappeared. Ganim doesn’t appear to have a byline today — maybe she got the day off to, oh, win a Pulitzer.