Few sports information directors in the United States are as revered as Bill Steinman. His encyclopedia-like knowledge of more than four decades of Columbia athletics history is unparalleled and his passion for Columbia, even in retirement, is as strong as ever.
Steinman came to Columbia in 1970 after serving as the head statistician for the New York Nets. A graduate of Hofstra University, Steinman worked with former sports information director Kevin DeMarrais ’64 for 14 years until Steinman was named Columbia’s Director of Sports Information in May 1984.
Steinman’s tenure has spanned several periods in Columbia’s athletics history. He was present during Columbia’s 1983 run to the NCAA Men’s Soccer championship and was the sports information director when Columbia College became coeducational. Steinman worked closely for and with four athletics directors, eight head football coaches and eight men’s basketball coaches.
“Bill is truly a fountain of information - from the important to the sublime. More importantly, he is Columbia’s institutional memory,” said Dr. M. Dianne Murphy.
Steinman has been honored numerous times for his work promoting and publicizing Columbia’s teams, including awards presented by the Metropolitan Basketball Writers , the Eastern College Athletic Conference, the All-America Football Foundation and the College Sports Information Directors Association, which presented Steinman with a Lifetime Achievement Award in July 2010.
Not only is Steinman fantastic at his craft, he is an equally outstanding mentor. Assistant directors, interns and even student workers have learned under his guidance and proceeded to become legends in their own right.
The roster of his former proteges reads like a “Who’s Who” in the communications field. It includes a national sports and business writer for the Associated Press, head of communications at IBM, senior editor at Citigroup and an official scorer for the New York Jets and Yankees, just to name a few.
Steinman’s 40 years at Columbia have left an indelible imprint on the athletics program and he is a true hall of fame personality at Columbia.
“Columbia has boasted some outstanding men and women on its athletic teams during the past 40 years,” Steinman said recently. “Olympic gold medalist Cristina Teuscher, future World Series hero Gene Larkin, track and cross country All-American Caroline Bierbaum, a host of future professionals in tennis, baseball, football and soccer – when I think back on my years at Columbia, I think of them and literally thousands more.”