Steve Krause is on the A-list of journalists for all-time.
If Steve Krause’s byline were on top of a story, you knew three things: the writer put everything he had into it, he loved writing it, and you as a reader had to read it.
Steve Krause, 67, the king of North Shore journalism who has been a writer, an editor, and columnist in the pages of the Daily Item for 42 years, is vacating his throne. Today is the last day of an amazing career that began 49 years ago while he was a student in the co-op program at Northeastern University.
Steven Krause, proud son of Lynn, husband of Linda Krause and father of Andrew Krause, is retiring. He is leaving the stage, stating in his own inimitable fashion: “You know, I used to say whenever I’d read about Brett Favre and how many retirements he’d have, ‘The great ones know when it’s time to go. I think David Ortiz and Jim Brown did it right. I’m not ascribing myself as being one of the great ones, but the second half of that statement is true, I know when it’s time to go.”
His Beginnings at Northeastern and United Press International
Here’s how Northeastern University in Boston describes its outstanding Cooperative Education Program: “Through co-op, students alternate periods of academic courses with periods of employment in positions related to their academic or career interests.”
Steve Krause is a perfect example of why NU’s career development program is so effective.
“I was a co-op at Northeastern, that was how I got my start,” recalled Krause, a 1971 graduate of St. John’s Prep in Danvers. “The first job I had at UPI [United Press International] was as a copyboy and at the time, it was exactly what it sounded like. You filed copy, you changed the typewriter ribbons, you changed the ribbons in the teletype, you went out in the morning and got coffee for everybody. You went out and got lunch for everybody so they wouldn’t have to get up from their desks.”
UPI editors soon recognized Krause’s journalistic talent and ambition and started training him to write briefs.
“The first thing I did was write sports briefs,” said Krause. “And the only vacant typewriter in the office at the time was at a desk next to the New England sports editor, whose name was Al Bruce. He and I struck up a friendship. At some point over that winter Al needed a second person to go to a Bruins game. This was 1972 and Bobby Orr was in his heyday and here I am – I had never gone to a Bruins game because I could never get a ticket. I was watching Orr and Esposito and all these guys, and I said, ‘holy moly, this is incredible, I’m 19 years old, sitting with the press guys and watching a Bruins game’.’’
Bruce asked his young reporter to “run quotes” which means Krause was tasked to go to the Bruins locker room and get quotes from the Bruins players for the UPI’s game story.
“That was my first taste of what that kind of life was like, and I have to tell you, it was very addicting. I couldn’t get enough of it,” said Krause.
Krause soon began covering Red Sox games at Fenway Park, describing the experience as “like dying and going to heaven.”
One of Krause’s highlights while working as a college student at UPI: covering all four of the Red Sox home games of the 1975 World Series.
“I was in the ballpark when Carlton Fisk hit the home run,” he said.
On to the Lynn Item
UPI hired Krause full time right out of college and he worked there until 1979 when he joined the staff of the Lynn Item, holding down numerous positions in his 42 years at his hometown newspaper.
“I was on the news desk. I was on the sports desk. I wrote sports. I covered sports. I did a little lifestyle reporting. I wrote an editorial page column once a week. And then why the buyout happened in 2014, I became the news editor,” said Krause.
Gratitude and Respect for his Item Colleagues
Krause said he truly enjoyed his 42 years at the Item, notably in his capacity as the sports editor.
“We had a really good time and we did good work,” said Krause. “I found that I loved covering high school sports.”
Krause noted some of the former colleagues in the sports department with whom he worked at the Item, including Joyce Erekson, a true pioneer among sportswriters on the North Shore, Richard Tenorio, Matt Roy, Gordon Vincent, Allan Segal, Jonathan Weiner, Bob Haas, and Cary Shuman.
“I would have put those writers up against anybody, any staff, anywhere,” said Krause.
He is grateful to current Item publisher Ted Grant and former Item sports editor Paul Halloran.
“Ted and Paul were extremely instrumental in all the good things that happened to me,” said Krause. “There were times when I really needed support from people and they always supported me. They were two really influential people in my life.”
Treat Every Story With Equal Importance
Having covered professional sports including marquee events like the World Series and the Super Bowl, Krause said he maintained the same philosophy no matter the level of competition, stating, “The only thing I ever felt I owed anybody was to treat the story seriously and professionally. And if you do that, you’re going to do a good story.”
Krause recalled one instance when he returned from covering the Patriots’ Super Bowl defeat to the New York Giants in Arizona on an early-morning flight to Boston. “I take about a four-hour nap and I get up and cover Lynn Tech basketball at Swampscott. How do you like that? I go from the Super Bowl to [former Tech coach] Marvin Avery. I went from the Super Bowl to Tech basketball and it didn’t seem like anything different to me.”
A Final Thought from our ‘Great One’
Asked to reflect on his multiple award-winning career at the Daily Item, Krause replied, “It’s been a very rewarding 42 years. I’ve loved every second of it.”
And the readers on the North Shore and beyond have enjoyed every second of Steve Krause’s royal presence in their community.
The press boxes at Manning and Fraser won’t be the same without Steve Krause enlightening others with his witty observations, while the athletes, the coaches, and the spectators looked forward with much anticipation to reading his game story in the next day’s newspaper.