William Nack's 45-year journalism career has taken him from the University of Illinois to the U.S. Army in Vietnam and from Newsday newspaper to Sports Illustrated (S.I.), from which he retired as a senior writer in 2001 after nearly 23 years. Since then he has done freelance writing for S.I, Time, GQ, and ESPN, and has been involved in film consulting and book writing.
Recently, he was the consulting producer for an ESPN made-for-TV movie on the life of the brilliant and undefeated filly Ruffian, who died after breaking down in a nationally televised match race in 1975. The movie, starring Sam Shepard as Ruffian's trainer, was shown on ABC-TV. Nack's personal memoir of the filly, Ruffian: A Racetrack Romance, was published last year.
Disney Studios has acquired the rights to his biography of Secretariat, the greatest of American racehorses, and the studio plans to begin shooting a movie based on the book. He will also serve as a consultant on that film. For ESPN, Nack recently began writing and narrating on camera a series of biographies of renowned sporting figures that will run as obituaries upon their demise.
This will mark Nack's eleventh consecutive year as a CWA panelist.