“Do what you love, and love what you do.”
Joe Grimm teaches MSU journalism students how to cover local communities by helping them run local news sites in and around East Lansing. This site, Entirely East Lansing, links to more. Grimm also teaches student how to edit for print and digital news outlets. In the spring of 2012, one of his classes wrote and produced “The New Bullying,” a website, paperback and ebook available for sale on Nooks, Kindles, iPads and phones. The students did it in 101 days.
In the 2013-2014 academic year, Grimm is part of a Communication Arts and Sciences team working with professionals at Saudi Aramco, satisfying his passion for working with global communities.
Grimm is campus advisor for the student chapters of the Society of Professional Journalists and the National Association of Black Journalists.
He is also co-director of The Living Textbook, an Asian American Journalists Association project in a Dearborn middle school, he writes a column for the Freedom Forum’s Diversity Institute, he hosts bi-weekly chats for the Poynter Institute and he has run workshops on professional branding for the American Press Institute.
Grimm teaches in the National High School Institute’s five-week journalism intensive at Northwestern University and he coached the high school journalism team that worked with the Time, Inc., project in Detroit in 2009-2010. He was also news editor for reznetnews.org, a national Native American news site.
Grimm was newsroom recruiter and staff development editor at the Detroit Free Press from 1990 until August 2008. During those years he also worked with corporate recruiting teams at Gannett and Knight Ridder. He has interviewed hundreds of people, reviewed thousands of job candidates on paper and recruited at hundreds of job fairs and college campus career days. In 1993, he established an annual jobs fair in Detroit.
In 1997, he launched the JobsPage, a journalism careers site and spun off a blog in 2003. In 2006, that blog became “Ask the Recruiter,” a daily feature with the Poynter Institute’s Career Center. He has been a regular contributor to Editor & Publisher magazine, the Newspaper Association of America’s Fusion magazine and UNITY: Journalists of Color.
Grimm created “100 Questions and Answers About Arab Americans” in 2000. He posted that guide the day after the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks and it became a timely and heavily trafficked publication. That guide is a partial inspiration for the J-School’s new series of guides to cultural competence.
Grimm joined the Free Press in 1983 and has been a copy editor, news editor, front-page designer, weekend editor and ombudsman. He began his newspaper career at The Oakland Press where he was a copy editor, wire editor, copy desk chief, page-one designer, regional editor and associate editor.
He started teaching college as an adjunct professor at Oakland University around 1980. Grimm has taught media editing, copyediting, reporting, editorial writing and photojournalism. He also is a member of the advisory board for the Great Lakes Books series at Wayne State University Press.
Grimm earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in journalism and a teaching certificate from the University of Michigan.
Awards, Honors and Recognitions
AEJMC, honorable mention, Best Practices in Teaching With Tools and Technologies, 2013
Center for Service-Learning and Civic Engagement commendation, Michigan State University, 2012
Inducted into the Michigan Journalism Hall of Fame, 2009
Robert G. McGruder Award for Diversity Leadership from APME, ASNE, Freedom Forum, 2007
Asian American Journalists Association Leadership in Diversity award, 2005
Wayne State University Journalism Institute for Minorities recognition, 2005
Michigan Interscholastic Press Association John V. Field Award, 2004
Center for Great Lakes Culture non-fiction book of the year; Read Michigan selection (predecessor to Michigan Notable Books) 2003
Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism “Let’s Do it Better” recognition, 2002
Knight Ridder excellence award for diversity, 1997
Grimm teaches JRN 300, public affairs reporting; and JRN 405, editing for print and online, a course he developed at MSU. He also does outreach to communities and high schools.
In the spring of 2013, he launched a new course in which students create Cultural Competence guides. They are working on a guide about Asian Indians in the United States. In another new course, students are learning public relations skills of branding by creating their own professional brands.