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By , Jan. 19, 2023, J-Source

Steve was a storyteller. There were some seminal moments, of course, as there are in anyone’s life — for instance, 1977, when Lynn Cunningham hired him for the first of his 14 years at Toronto Life. Then there was that point in 1994 when he started teaching in the journalism school at Toronto Metropolitan University, then Ryerson Polytechnic; the moment when his cherished daughter, Hannah, entered his life. There was also the dreaded moment in 1997 that changed the course of his life: Spinal Cord 2, as he called it, the second spinal decompression surgery that put an end to the more mobile life he had known.

Steve’s teaching style was all about mentorship and care, in particular for the more vulnerable students in each cohort. Watching him gave me the confidence to apply that approach — it’s what some people call lenience.

There is not a single approach to teaching, nor a perfect one. But Steve’s approach got results. All through the mastheads of newsrooms and magazines in Canada and overseas are the much respected and nurtured recipients of that guidance.