5 Minutes with Dan Treadway

On Thursday, November 8 at 6pm, Starrett-Lehigh is bringing together today’s industry experts for a panel discussion on branding – INSIDE THE BRANDING STUDIO: BUILDING A BRAND, BEING A BRAND, WORKING WITH BRANDS.

A shared part of most childhoods is playing or watching sports. The sports industry touches all corners of the world, with each sport, team, and athlete building a brand. Starrett-Lehigh is home to The Players’ Tribune, a media company founded by Dereck Jeter to tell athletes’ stories authentically. Joining us on Thursday is Dan Treadway, deputy editor at TPT. It is is job to bring stories to life, helping to build each athlete’s brand.

Starrett-Lehigh sat down with Dan to learn more about him and his experience leading up to our annual panel. See below to spend 5 Minutes with Dan Treadway!

Please describe your role at Players’ Tribune.
I’m a deputy editor at Players’ Tribune. My day-to-day involves a lot of different things but the crux of my job is working directly with athletes to bring their stories to life. I was very fortunate to start at TPT early on before it launched and since then have had the opportunity to work with hundreds of different athletes from just about every background and sport imaginable. My time is generally split between brainstorming, traveling, interviewing, writing, editing and re-editing. If you’re passionate about sports and storytelling, there really isn’t a better place to work in my opinion.

What makes Players’ Tribune unique?
There are a lot of different elements to our company that distinguish it from other media organizations but the main one is that all of our content comes directly from the perspective of the athlete. They are the guiding force behind everything we do. Because of that, over the years we’ve developed a level of trust with the athlete community that allows us to present stories you won’t find anywhere else.

How did you decide to work in Sports Journalism?
I just always loved to watch and read about sports from a very young age. I’d spend hours memorizing stats off the back of baseball cards or reading athlete autobiographies. I quietly had a dream of working in sports in some capacity but was never entirely sure what that would be. It turns out a lot of the stuff I took a natural interest in as a kid ended up informing much of the work I do today.

What do you like to do for fun that isn’t sports related when not at work?
Same thing as everyone else: Fortnite.

What makes a good editor?
Patience and empathy. To share an important story requires a lot of vulnerability from the person telling it. When someone is willing to go there, I feel a really deep responsibility to do everything in my power to help them communicate their experiences in the most effective way possible.

What is your favorite thing about your job?
I get to work alongside some of the smartest people I’ve ever encountered in this industry/in general. Their talent and passion pushes me to try to meet a really high standard with everything I do. They all make me better. I’m really grateful for that.

Which story has resonated with you the most?
It’s always hard to answer this because I’ve had a pretty wide array of interactions and they’re all interesting in different ways, but the first one that comes to mind is this piece I worked on with Gary Sheffield a couple of years back. He’s such a vibrant storyteller with so many life experiences and his passion for baseball is borderline intoxicating. I could listen to him tell stories forever.

Do you ever get starstruck?
For the most part no just because I have a job to do and doing it well generally requires the person I’m working with to view me as a resource rather than as a fan. But there have been a few times where I’ve gotten a little flustered upon meeting an athlete. Generally it happens when it was a guy I looked up to when I was a kid. The most notable example is Bill Goldberg. He was a my hero in elementary school, I had three t-shirts of him and wore them in rotation for all of fourth and fifth grade. I got to interview him when he came into our offices and somehow he surpassed my wildest expectations. Just an incredibly kind and cool person. That was a truly a thrill.

What is a piece of advice you would give someone who wants to work in (sports) journalism?
You have to write a lot of bad stuff before you eventually write some good stuff. And even then, you’ll probably think your good stuff is pretty bad. If there’s a step beyond that I haven’t reached it yet.

What is something your colleagues don’t know about you?
I was a finalist to drive the Oscar Mayer Wienermobile in college. It didn’t work out and now I’m stuck here.

What do you love about working at Starrett-Lehigh?
The guys who work at the bodega on the ground floor are nice. I go down there just to hang out sometimes. I also like the Takumi Taco truck on the 12th floor both for the food and the engenuity of putting a food truck on the 12th floor of an office building.

What excites you most about participating in Starrett-Lehigh’s annual fall speaker series?
I was told there would be hors d’oeuvres.