Guy Sterling

Guy Sterling



DATE OF BIRTH: Sept. 23, 1948



If you share a birthday with John Coltrane, Ray Charles and Bruce Springsteen, chances are you're going to be a music lover. At least that's the way Guy Sterling sees it. While he never amounted to much playing an instrument, Sterling carried over his love of music to writing about it. Musical history, especially in and around Newark, has fascinated him for years and was a subject he wrote about regularly in his long career at The Star-Ledger. Sterling joined the paper in the spring of 1980 and retired on Jan. 1, 2009.

In 2007, he won an ASCAP Deems Taylor award, the most prestigious honor in music writing. He was also one of the lead reporters in the paper's coverage of the Seton Hall University fatal dormitory fire in January 2000, stories that earned The Star-Ledger its first-ever selection as a Pulitzer Prize finalist. In 2003, Sterling was the lead reporter on "A Case of Neglect," a series of stories about three young brothers who were abandoned and left to die in the basement of a Newark apartment. Those articles were recognized by the National Association of Black Journalists as the year's best coverage of a breaking news story and led to the overhaul of child welfare agencies and laws in New Jersey and states across the nation.

Sterling is the guiding force behind the Newark Jazz Elders, bringing the group together for appearances dating back to 2003. He holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Virginia and a master's degree in journalism from Columbia University. A native of New Jersey, he has lived in Newark since 1986 and traces his family's roots in the city back more than 100 years.

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