By Amari D. Pollard
One of the best things about the publishing industry? Whether you know them personally or not, there’s a plethora of professionals to look up to–people who influence and encourage others to achieve their media aspirations. A few of Ed’s friends shared the names of the editors and writers who inspire them to work harder and push further every day.
“My inspiration is … my mom! My mom, Anne Vaccaro Brady, worked as the managing editor of Sassy magazine (RIP). She ran the magazine’s advice column, which totally prepped her for all the hard conversations during my teenage years, and I’ll never forget her feature story that talked me out of a nose job in high school. It’s pretty inspiring to know my mom was part of a brand that helped shape teenage life in America in a big way. I only hope to be as cool as her one day!” —T.K. Brady, digital editor at Food Network Magazine
“The one writer who inspires me the most is Stuart Elliott, a former advertising and media reporter for The New York Times. Stuart was, in my opinion, one of the absolute best in the business when it comes to covering the advertising industry. In an era where we are so quick to see “AF” or “literally can’t even” in a headline discussing campaigns from ad agencies and brands, Stuart brought an old-world grace and style to his content that was thoughtful and not reliant on tired clickbait tactics. His articles taught me to treat each piece—and its subject—with respect, curiosity, and care.” —Heather Taylor, senior editor, PopIcon at Advertising Week
“My first boss. I joined my college’s student-run magazine on a whim my freshman year, and the editor at the time was a sophomore. Not only did he give me my first paid gig as a writer, but he also inspired me with his dedication to tough yet fair journalism. To this day, I credit him for sowing the seeds of my career.” —Brooke Nelson, researcher at Frontline PBS
“So many strong, fearless women have nurtured my passions over the years, but the leadership team at Eater really pushed me to realize that I needed to be in food media—in particular, Sonia Chopra, one of the most distinctly effective leaders I’ve ever met. Sonia was the first editor who took time to push me to be my best, even when she didn’t have to. I’m blessed to count her as a friend today, and she still continues to inspire me to think critically about the work we do, despite the two years that have passed since I was her intern. I wouldn’t be where I am without her.” —Zee Krstic, assistant editor at CookingLight.com
“The first time I picked up The New Yorker was in the summer of 2015 while babysitting my neighbor (I know, how did it take me so long to read the magazine?!) Anyway, the June 22 issue was sitting on the coffee table and the first piece I flipped to was “The Death Treatment” by Rachel Aviv. I was immediately enthralled by her writing and the way she beautifully wove together each layer of her story. At that time, I was still unsure of what kind of writer I wanted to be. All I knew was I needed to write intimate stories about the human experience, and I needed to make people feel the way Rachel’s writing made me feel in that moment.” —Amari Pollard, social media editor at The Week
Amari D. Pollard is the Social Media Editor for The Week. She has written pieces for Parents, Popsugar, Elite Daily and Inside Lacrosse. She’s a news junkie obsessed with her collection of glasses, vintage shopping, and brunching. Check out her work at amaridawn.com and follow her slightly above average life on Instagram and Twitter.