Scott Simon Scott Simon is the host of Weekend Edition Saturday and is one of the hosts of NPR's morning news podcast Up First.
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Scott Simon

SSimon
NPR

Scott Simon

Host, Weekend Edition Saturday and Up First

Scott Simon is one of America's most admired writers and broadcasters. He is the host of Weekend Edition Saturday and is one of the hosts of NPR's morning news podcast Up First. He has reported from all fifty states, five continents, and ten wars, from El Salvador to Sarajevo to Afghanistan and Iraq. His books have chronicled character and characters, in war and peace, sports and art, tragedy and comedy.

Weekend Edition Saturday has been called by the Washington Post, "the most literate, witty, moving, and just plain interesting news show on any dial," and by Brett Martin of Time Out New York, "the most eclectic, intelligent two hours of broadcasting on the airwaves." Simon has won every major award in broadcasting, including the Peabody, the Emmy, the Columbia-DuPont, the Ohio State Award, the Robert F. Kennedy Journalism Award, and the Sidney Hillman Award. He received the Presidential End Hunger Award for his coverage of the Ethiopian civil war and famine, and a special citation from the Peabody Awards for his weekly essays, which were cited as "consistently thoughtful, graceful, and challenging." He has also received the Barry M. Goldwater Award from the Human Rights Fund. Recently, he was awarded the Studs Terkel Award.

Simon has hosted many television specials, including the PBS's "State of Mind," "Voices of Vision," and "Need to Know." "The Paterson Project" won a national Emmy, as did his two-hour special from the Rio Earth Summit meeting. He co-anchored PBS's "Millennium 2000" coverage in concert with the BBC, and has co-hosted the televised Columbia-DuPont Awards. He also became familiar to viewers in Great Britain as host of the continuing BBC series, "Eyewitness," and a special on the White House press corps. He has appeared as a guest and commentator on all major networks, including BBC, NBC, CNN, and ESPN.

Simon has contributed articles to The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Times Book Review, The Wall Street Journal, The Sunday Times of London, The Guardian, and Gourmet among other publications, and won a James Beard Award for his story, "Conflict Cuisine" in Gourmet. He has received numerous honorary degrees.

Sports Illustrated called his book Home and Away: Memoir of a Fan "extraordinary...uniformly superb...a memoir of such breadth and reach that it compares favorably with Fredrick Exley's A Fan's Notes." It was at the top of several non-fiction bestseller lists. His book, and Jackie Robinson and the Integration of Baseball, was Barnes and Noble's Sports Book of the Year. His novel, Pretty Birds, the story of two teenage girls in Sarajevo during the siege, received rave reviews, with Scott Turow calling it, "the most auspicious fiction debut by a journalist of note since Tom Wolfe's. . . always gripping, always tender, and often painfully funny. It is a marvel of technical finesse, close observation, and a perfectly pitched heart." Windy City, Simon's second novel, is a political comedy set in the Chicago City Council. Baby, We Were Meant for Each Other, an essay about the joys of adoption, was published in August 2010.

Simon's tweets to his 1.25 million Twitter followers from his mother's bedside in the summer of 2013 gathered major media attention around the world. They inspired his New York Times bestseller book Unforgettable: A Son, a Mother, and the Lessons of a Lifetime. Laura Hillenbrand, the author of Unbroken and Seabiscuit, called the book "poignant, funny, intimate, and unforgettable." Scott Turow called it "a treasure. It is as poignant and tender and wise as Tuesdays with Morrie, with the added virtues of being unflinching and, quite often, very funny." Laurie Halse Anderson just called the book, "Amazing. Breathtaking. Affirming. This book will change lives, restore hopes to the brokenhearted, and remind the rest of us what is truly important." Carlos Lozado of The Washington Post called it, in a rave review, "a book that easily matches its title."

Simon also wrote the book Just Getting Started with Tony Bennett. His latest books is My Cubs: A Love Story about his lifelong fandom of the Chicago Cubs, and their historic World Series victory.

Simon is a native of Chicago and the son of comedian Ernie Simon and Patricia Lyons Simon. He is married to Caroline Richard Simon, and their daughters are Elise and Paulina. His hobbies are books, theater, ballet, British comedy, Mexican cooking, and "bleeding for the Chicago Cubs." He has thrown out the first pitch at Wrigley Field (low and outside) and appeared as Mother Ginger in the Ballet Austin production of The Nutcracker. Scott received the Order of Lincoln from the State of Illinois in 2016, the state's highest honor. He adds, "If you prick me, I'll bleed Chicago Cubs blue."

Story Archive

Famed author Jodi Picoult novelizes the pandemic in new book 'Wish You Were Here'

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Stephen Sondheim onstage during an event at the Fairchild Theater in East Lansing, Mich., in 1997. Douglas Elbinger/Getty Images hide caption

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Douglas Elbinger/Getty Images

Opinion: In Sondheim's essential lyrics, a soundtrack for life

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Alaskan museum uncovers unique art from the indigenous Tlingit tribe

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Sophia Glock divulges her secretive life as a child of CIA officers in 'Passport'

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Invasive green crabs are threatening local species. The solution? Eat them

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Independent retailers look to Small Business Saturday to recoup sales after pandemic

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Elbow tugs on the strings of childhood, life and death in album 'Flying Dream One'

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Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., says he believes the Senate will pass President Biden's spending bill before the end of the year. The House passed the bill on Friday, sending it to the 50-50 Senate. Pete Marovich/Getty Images hide caption

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Illinois Sen. Dick Durbin expects the Senate to pass spending bill by the end of 2021

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Lowland gorillas Jamila (L) and Suwedi cuddle in their enclosure at the zoo in Duisburg, western Germany. Roland Weihrauch/DPA/AFP via Getty Images hide caption

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Roland Weihrauch/DPA/AFP via Getty Images

Opinion: Hugging is common and meaningful in the animal kingdom

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Vietnam War veteran and triple amputee Max Cleland delivers a speech during a campaign appearance. Cleland died on Tuesday at age 79. Thomas S England/Getty Images hide caption

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Opinion: Veteran and former senator Max Cleland has died, but his legacy lives on

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Zhalarina entered the 2021 Tiny Desk Contest with her song "Lala." Courtesy of the artist hide caption

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Courtesy of the artist

Tiny Desk Contest entrant Zhalarina on the paternal bond that inspired 'Lala'

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A hatch chile aboard the International Space Station NASA hide caption

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NASA

Opinion: Fine dining on the International Space Station

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Snail Mail's new album, Valentine is out now. Tina Tyrell/Courtesy of the artist hide caption

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Tina Tyrell/Courtesy of the artist

Snail Mail talks 'emphasizing the opposite' for new album 'Valentine'

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Helado Negro, performing at Coachella on April 20, 2018, in Indio, Calif. Matt Cowan/Getty Images hide caption

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Helado Negro's meditative new album, 'Far In,' is one he's always wanted to hear

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