Digital Journalism Pioneer Grabowicz Dies At 66
BERKELEY, Calif. (AP) — Paul Grabowicz, a former Oakland Tribune reporter who became a digital journalism pioneer at the University of California, Berkeley, has died.
Grabowicz died Thursday at the age of 66, the UC Berkeley Graduate School of Journalism said in an obituary on its website. He was suffering from cancer.
Grabowicz, or “Grabs” as he was referred to by students, arrived at the school in 1995 and founded its New Media Program, which teaches students to combine video, audio and other media to create stories online.
Grabowicz also taught students what public records were available online and how to access them.
“He understood the corner that journalism had turned and he figured out how to teach it,” Tom Goldstein, a journalism professor at UC Berkeley who hired Grabowicz, said in the school’s obituary. “And that became a signature of the school. Without him, the school would not have entered the 21st century.”
Before joining UC Berkeley, Grabowicz spent 20 years as an investigative reporter for The Oakland Tribune.
“He was one of the best investigative reporters I’ve worked with in my 50 years at the Oakland Tribune,” Oakland Tribune reporter Harry Harris told the newspaper (http://bayareane.ws/1mEi5mX). “His coverage of crime, corruption, terrorism and other issues should be textbook material for anyone in journalism. Bay Area journalism has lost one of its greats.”
Grabowicz had a famously gruff demeanor, but students and faculty say he was kind and extremely helpful.