Featured Grad: National Reporter For NFL Media
Today's featured grad is James Palmer, a 2001 graduate of UMAHS. For the last five years, James has been a national reporter for NFL Media. In that role he writes for NFL.com, reports live from team practice facilities throughout the week on a variety of shows for the NFL Network, does live hits from stadiums throughout the country on game day and creates long form, in-depth story telling features for the network. We asked James what he enjoys about his work:
Covering breaking news and not knowing where you are going to be on a week to week basis brings an added challenge, but also a certain amount of adrenaline by having to adjust and adapt to what the latest major stories are around the NFL. The spontaneity is what I love. In the same year, I could be following Tom Brady and the Patriots in the playoffs all the way to sitting with J.J. Watt and talking to him about his remarkable charitable efforts in the wake of Hurricane Harvey. Getting a chance to cover the amazing stories and games throughout the NFL season couldn’t be more fun, but having the platform to showcase what players do in their communities off the field and the incredible people who make up this great game is even more rewarding.
James has had an incredible career. After graduating from Ohio State University, he began his career as a production assistant at the Mountain West Sports Network. After 4 years in Denver, he moved to Atlanta covering the SEC, producing AAA baseball games and working as a producer on Inside The NBA. From there it was two years as a beat reporter covering the Houston Texans for Comcast Sportsnet Houston before being discovered by the NFL Network. Now he covers the entire NFL from his home base in Denver. We asked James how Upper Merion helped to prepare him for his career:
I loved Upper Merion Area High School. I played three sports and was on student council. Overall, I just liked being there every day. Obviously sports, in my mind, are a big part of personal development. Bonding with teammates and developing relationships with coaches really stands out to me. Spending years being coached by men like Tom Dodds, Don Jackson and Andy Toto really helped to build my character. And back then we had a bunch of young teachers that I feel brought so much energy and encouragement to me personally. My job is telling stories, so having classes with Jason Darnell, Laura Ebersole & Tom Schurtz, where I was encouraged to get up and speak in front of the class played a huge role in encouraging me to do what I now do for a living.
You can see James' work regularly on nfl.com and the NFL Network and he will be in Kansas City all this week coveriing the playoff game between the Houston Texans and the Kansas City Chiefs.