Washington, DC (Mach 23, 2012)—This week, the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) mourns the loss of trailblazing sports journalist Lacy J. Banks. He was a trailblazer as the first full-time African-American sportswriter for the Sun-Times, a job that led him to cover seven world championships involving Chicago teams.
Banks was the longest-serving sportswriter on the Sun-Times’ staff, joining the paper on Aug. 7, 1972, and remaining on staff until his death. For most of that time, he covered the Bulls and the NBA, ranking among the longest-tenured pro basketball writers in the country. His time on the beat spanned from the mid-1980s to last season, when he covered the Bulls into the NBA postseason.
His time spanned all of Michael Jordan’s career and the start of Derrick Rose’s. Along the way, he deftly balanced a reporter’s objectivity with the personal bonds that grew between him and those he covered.
"Lacy was a legend, especially in the NBA, where he covered Michael Jordan in his heyday to covering MVP Derrick Rose. He was more than just a sports scribe. He was a minister who wanted to make sure people thrived in their everyday lives. RIP Lacy,” said NABJ President Greg Lee.
An advocacy group established in 1975 in Washington, D.C., NABJ is the largest organization for journalists of color in the nation, and provides career development as well as educational and other support to its members worldwide.
Material from the Sun-Times was used to compile this report.