Joe Grimm

Joe Grimm

Editor in residence, Bias Busters book series editor

  • Journalism


"Do what you love, and love what you do."

You've seen it on T-shirts, but it is not just a catchphrase. It is the secret to success. If you do what you love, your play will be your work, and you will be great at it.

As a journalism teacher, I am here to help students tell stories, explore the communities around them and cover them completely.

My classes write, edit, create content and publish books. Everything we do can prepare us to do what we love. These are things I love to do. If they excite you, too, maybe we should talk. I love to:

LEARN what draws people together, inspires them, makes them laugh or cry. I like to find out first, understand it and tell it best.

WRITE. The root of communicating whether you are an artist, a video journalist, a data hound or a reporter. I am a proud word nerd who loves to elevate writing and stories — mine and yours.

BELIEVE that there is incredible power in one idea, one person, one moment. We just have to believe and be the catalyst.

INCLUDE many kinds of people in my work. That leads to the best results. We are in the ideas business and we need all the ideas we can assemble.

I came to Michigan State in 2008 after more than 30 years in newsrooms, 25 of them at the Detroit Free Press. As the newsroom recruiting and development editor for most of that time, I was very happy to come to MSU, where I met and recruited so many talented journalism students. Now, I help them launch their careers. I have always been a teaching editor. I taught the whole time I was in newsrooms and continuing to publish now that I am in the classroom. For me, teaching and journalism are an ideal match. I love them.

Please, whatever you do, make it be something you love.



Adviser, MSU chapter National Association of Black Journalists

Course coordinator, Journalism 300

Michigan Journalism Hall of Fame member and committee member

Series editor, Bias Busters cultural competence guides

Creator, Fair Chance Reporting process

Advisory board, Great Lakes Books Series, Wayne State University Press

Newsletter co-editor, AEJMC Religion and Media Interest Group

Co-head instructor, Northwestern-Medill Journalism Institute


Research and Teaching


Journalism 300, spring 2023: We tell stories that really matter to all kinds of people. That is our goal. To make sure we are not missing anyone, we study our community and our sourcing to make sure we don't leave anyone out. We developed Fair Chance Reporting to do it.

Journalism 492, spring and fall 2023-2024: Bias Busters: We publish books that dispel myths and stereotypes about groups of people. So far, hundreds of students have helped publish more than 20 books in the Bias Busters series. Their guides have been about ethnicity, race, faith groups, gender and occupations. The students' books are available in print and digital formats on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Google Play and iTunes. How about you? Are you ready to be an author on a book? I think so. Be a Bias Buster with us.

Journalism 492, summers 2023 and 2024: Build your brand: This online course is great for getting yourself ready for the job market. We work out your selling points, how to express them and how to create the ambient awareness that makes you more visible to the people with the jobs.

Aside from teaching ...

Those are things I love about working with Spartans. There is even more to you and to me. Let's talk about where you're going, how you can get there and interests that make you unique. Me? Don't get me started on Michigan, the Great Lakes, my grandson and the subjects of two of my latest books, "Coney Detroit" and "The "Faygo Book." It could take a while.

Bias Busters series of cultural competence guides

In 2021, our classes will be creating guides about Sikh Americans and Roman Catholics. We will also be publishing guides on nonreligious Americans, Buddhist Americans and others as we continue our series on faith.

Fair Chance Reporting Project

Contact Information

404 Wilson Road, Room 303
Communication Arts and Sciences Building
Michigan State University