Linda Deutsch’s career in journalism spans more than 50 years, making her a “must interview” for our project. Her connection to some of the biggest news events in history and her insight into the evolution of journalism offer a compelling story for those interested in the intersection of journalism and history. She also has been involved with JAWS since its second camp, has served as a board member and has watched the organization develop from its infancy to its more structured status today.
Linda grew up in New Jersey during the 1940s and 1950s. For her ninth birthday, she received a typewriter, an early sign of her future as a reporter. She attended Monmouth University and received her first “real” job as a summer intern for the Perth Amboy (New Jersey) Evening News. In the summer of 1963, Deutsch was among the reporters covering Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech, an assignment that solidified her future in journalism.
“And that was the beginning. After that, I never looked back,” Linda said. “I knew what I was going to do.”
Since then, Linda has become a landmark at. When she started in 1967, she was the only woman in the newsroom. She’s gone on to cover the Bobby Kennedy assassination, the Manson trial, the Pentagon Papers trial and the O.J. Simpson trial ‒ if there was a major trial, she was there.
She continues to live in California and report fortoday. We conducted this oral history during the JAWS Vermont camp in fall 2013. Due to scheduling issues, this interview is shorter than some of our other oral histories. However ‒ like the AP reporter that she is ‒ Linda managed to get a lot of valuable information into a tight time frame.
( This interview was conducted by Teri Finneman )