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About Jackie MacMullan

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By Sean Whooley

Jackie MacMullan, born October 7, 1960 in Manhasset, New York, is a freelance journalist who has worked for The Boston Globe and Sports Illustrated. She currently makes regular appearances on ESPN’s Around the Horn, among other broadcasting ventures.

Though she was born in New York, MacMullan grew up in Westwood, Massachusetts, a small town of under 15,000 people. In Westwood, she began her journalism career early on, thanks to her interest in computers, the influence of her fifth grade teacher and her knowledge of newspapers thanks to her father.

MacMullan attended Westwood High School, about 25 miles outside of Boston. At Westwood High School, MacMullan not only played sports, including basketball, but found an interest in covering them too. She found a place at a local paper, covering sports at her own high school.

MacMullan graduated from Westwood and attended the University of New Hampshire, walked onto the women’s basketball team there as a freshman, and earned a scholarship the following year. She even broke the scoring record for the team in her sophomore year.

After graduating from New Hampshire, MacMullan interned with The Boston Globe in the news department, but made her way over to sports, and stayed on as a beat writer, eventually moving up to columnist and associate editor before plying her trade in several more places, like ESPN and Sports Illustrated.

MacMullan spent much of her time at The Boston Globe covering the Boston Celtics of the NBA, and has covered several NBA finals. However, she also covered a World Series, a Stanley Cup Final, the Olympics, and NCAA Final Fours. She has also covered basketball in China as well as rowing in England at the Henley Royal Regatta.

Jackie MacMullan has also written several books, including collaborations with former professional basketball players Shaquille O’Neal (Shaq Uncut), Larry Bird (Bird Watching: on Playing and Coaching the Game I Love), Bird and Earvin “Magic” Johnson (When the Game Was Ours), and University of Connecticut women’s basketball coach Geno Auriemma (Geno: In Pursuit of Perfection). In 2010, MacMullan received the Curt Gowdy Media Award from the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, given to media members who made a “significant contribution to the game of basketball.” She was the first woman to win the award.

MacMullan has also won awards from the Associated Press Sports Editors for investigative reporting on the death of Celtics’ basketball player Reggie Lewis and for feature writing with a profile of Patrick Ewing.

She has won several more honors, including the University of Massachusetts-Lowell’s For the Love of Sport Award. She was inducted into the New England Basketball Hall of Fame, honored by the New England Women’s Leadership Awards, named a New Fund Hall of Fame media recipient and was awarded a Distinguished Achievement Award from Tufts University. She is also in the University of New Hampshire’s Hall of Honor.

MacMullan, in addition to Around the Horn, currently contributes to WEEI Radio in Boston, as well as other broadcasting outlets.