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I am a free-lance writer specializing in profiles of news-makers and Central New York business news and trends. I have taught newswriting and ethics courses at the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. I earned a bachelor's degree in English literature from the State University College at Oswego (1977) and a master's degree in newspaper journalism from Newhouse (1999). I began teaching at Newhouse in 2000, and I continue to teach there. I took early retirement from The (Syracuse) Post-Standard in May 2007 after 27 years of working there as a reporter, copy editor, news designer, front-page editor, editorial writer, night city editor and bureau chief. I have written frequently for CNY Business Exchange, CNY The Good Life and several other regional magazines. I've also won awards for newspaper editing and design. Among the courses that I've taught at SU are: NEW205 (introduction to news writing), NEW305 (intermediate writing and reporting), NEW345 (critical perspectives on the news), NEW605 (Boot Camp for incoming grad students), NEW608 (Principles of journalism and ethics) and NEW617 (advanced reporting and writing grad course).

Thursday, June 5, 2014


      The book offers stories of Upstate University Hospital patients and the spiritual care volunteers who serve them. The diversity that the spiritual caregivers bring to this ministry meshes perfectly with the diverse needs and faith traditions of our community and the workings of the Spirit in our lives.
      The book, by Walt Wasilewski with contributions from Imani Shabazz, is free to anyone who would like to know more about Upstate's deep commitment to spiritual care and the limitless possibilities that volunteers bring to the ministry. It was published through a generous grant by the Friend In Deed program of the Upstate University Foundation. The Spiritual Care Department is accepting donations ($5 per copy) to help pay for postage and additional press runs of the book in the future.
      If you are interested in receiving a copy, send your request to Walt Wasilewski at

Thursday, April 24, 2014

COMING SOON: Open the Eyes of My Heart

Walt and the Rev. Terry Culbertson recently were interviewed for the weekly radio program Upstate on the Air that is heard on Sunday nights on WRVO. The program's host and Terry and Walt talked about the new book of stories from Upstate spiritual care and why spiritual care makes a difference. Listen to it by going to this link:

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

COMING SOON: Open the Eyes of My Heart, stories of spiritual care

The final revisions are almost done on a new project.
The book, to be published through Upstate Medical University, tells the stories of spiritual care chaplains and volunteers who share their presence and support with patients and their loved ones. The first printing is underwritten by a generous grant from the Friend In Deed program at Upstate. Look for it soon!

Thursday, December 12, 2013

NANCY CANTOR: How she changed the civic life of Syracuse

Syracuse University Chancellor Nancy Cantor has left her mark on Syracuse.
Conspicuous community outreach efforts --- including the Say Yes to Education program in the city’s schools, the Southside Partnerships, the Near West Side Initiative and Connective Corridor --- have had  ups and downs and attracted supporters and critics with a surprising amount of passion. As Cantor departs to head Rutgers University/Newark in New Jersey and new SU chancellor Kent Syverud prepares to take his own place here, those programs are still spinning out impacts in the community. Many of the people linked to these programs are wondering: Will Syverud give his blessing to Scholarship in Action or will the focus return to building up the university’s clout and influence within its walls and in the far-flung power centers in New York, Los Angeles and elsewhere?
This story by Walt Wasilewski in Dec. 11, 2013, edition of The Syracuse New Times tells the tale:

Monday, March 26, 2012

THE PROBLEM SOLVER: KS&R's Rita Reicher finds the formula

     Rita Reicher grew up in Central New York, and knows it well. She also knows how to help multi-national corporations figure out how to improve their products and understand the minds of consumers. She was there at the start when KS&R, one of the nation's top consumer and market research companies, was founded. Now she is its president. Here is a profile that I wrote about her that is the April 2012 cover story of CNY Business Exchange. Click on each page for a readable version.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

HEALTH CARE and CNY'S ECONOMY: What's next could be a surprise

  The cover of the February/March edition of CNY Business  Exchange magazine features a story I wrote about the future of one of the biggest engines behind our local economy: health care. What happens to health care here affects everyone's pocketbook. The predictions from experts on what's coming soon may surprise you. Here is a link to the full story:

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

TURNING LAYOFFS INTO JOBS: How Bitzer Scroll did it

A German company, Bitzer Scroll, has quietly invested tens of millions of dollars to build a high-tech factory here in CNY. The company is looking for a local site to build an even bigger factory to make  new air conditioning compressors that were pioneered by an elite group of local engineers. It's an unexpected twist in the legacy of the air conditioning industry in CNY, which began in the long-ago days of Willis Carrier. Here is a link to a story I wrote about this for November 2011 edition of CNY Business Exchange: