BCOMS’ Nigel Wallace spent the day with the Morning Star sports editor, Kadeem Simmonds, who spoke of how he got into sports journalism and went on to become the first black sports editor of a daily national newspaper.
Kadeem began his journey into journalism with a two-week stint at Hayters- which was extended to a few months, covering the FA Youth Cup, women’s football and writing transfer stories for talkSPORT, whilst still at university.
The experience he gained at Hayters led him to an opportunity working at Football Exclusives, covering non-league football. Kadeem quickly discovered the tough-task journalism had to offer; he went from covering Premier League and Champions League games to non-league matches in press boxes with limited Wi-Fi and freezing cold weather.
While he was at Football Exclusives, Kadeem was also working at McDonalds which helped cover costs to travel to games. Within a year he moved onto covering Ilford FC for his local radio station.
Around that same period, he worked for Philosophy football where he helped lay out cards, which formed national team flags when held up together by fans, at Wembley for England games. When he was laying cards down at an Arsenal game, he met a woman who had a friend who ran a newspaper – and was looking for a sports reporter. He gave her his CV, she forwarded and it turned out that the position was actually for a sports editor role.
Despite having no experience, in March 2014 Kadeem became the sports editor of the Morning Star – the first black person to fill this role at a daily newspaper.
Listen to the interview in sections below.