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About David Remnick

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By Joe Foley

David Remnick is approaching 20 years as editor-in-chief of The New Yorker since starting in 1998. He originally joined the magazine as a staff writer in 1992.

He was born in Hackensack, New Jersey, the son of an art teacher and a dentist. Remnick graduated from Princeton University with a bachelor’s degree in comparative literature in 1981. At Princeton, he helped found the University’s student newspaper, Nassau Weekly.

He accepted a job at the Washington Post shortly after graduating. Remnick started as a night crime reporter, a position he held only briefly. He transitioned to the sports section, where George Solomon was the Post’s sports editor. His assignments included covering the United States Football League, boxing and the NBA’s Washington Bullets.

In 1988, Remnick started a new role as The Washington Post’s Moscow correspondent. Remnick lived in Moscow for 4 years with his wife, Esther Fein, a reporter at the New York Times who was also covering U.S.-U.S.S.R. relations. Remnick’s time in Moscow led to his first book: Lenin’s Tomb: The Last Days of the Soviet Empire. The book won the Pulitzer Prize for General Non-Fiction in 1994, as well as a George Polk Award for excellence in journalism.

After ten years at The Post, Remnick joined The New Yorker. He has reported on Russia, the Middle East and Europe for the magazine. His 1997 article on boxer Mike Tyson, “Kid Dynamite Blows Up,” was nominated for a National Magazine Award. Remnick’s third book, “King of the World, was a biography of Muhammad Ali. He has also written profiles of Barack Obama, Bill Clinton, Katherine Graham and Phillip Roth, among others. He comments frequently on President Trump.

Remnick has also edited anthologies of New Yorker pieces, collections of the magazine’s best work since its inception in 1925. These include: “Life Stories,” a collection of profiles; “Fierce Pajamas,” a compilation of humor stories; and “The Only Game in Town,” some of the magazine’s most outstanding sports writing.

His 2010 biography on Barack Obama, “The Bridge: The Life and Rise of Barack Obama,” debuted at No. 3 in the New York Times Best Seller list for hardcover nonfiction. Remnick has also contributed pieces to The New York Review of Books, Vanity Fair, Esquire and The New Republic.

Since becoming editor-in-chief, The New Yorker, the magazine has won a grand total of 37 National Magazine Awards.

Remnick lives in New York with his wife. They have three children: Alex, Noah and Natasha. Noah writes for the New York Times metro section, and covers politics.