John Kass has covered a variety of topics since arriving at the Chicago Tribune in 1983.
The son of a Greek immigrant grocer, Kass was born June 23, 1956, on Chicago's South Side and grew up there and in Oak Lawn. He held a number of jobs--merchant marine sailor, ditch digger, waiter--before becoming a film student at Columbia College in Chicago. There, he worked at the student newspaper and caught the attention of Daryle Feldmeir, chairman of the journalism department and former editor of the Chicago Daily News.
Feldmeir and journalism professor Les Brownlee helped him obtain an internship at the Daily Calumet in 1980, where Kass worked as a reporter until he left for the Tribune.
In 2004, Kass was awarded the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi national award for general column writing, the Scripps Howard Foundation's National Journalism Award for commentary, the Press Club of Atlantic City's National Headliner Award for local interest column writing on a variety of subjects, and the Chicago Headline Club's Lisagor Award for best daily newspaper columnist.
In 1992, Kass won the Chicago Tribune's Beck Award for writing.
Kass lives in the western suburbs with his wife and twin sons. His column appears on Page A2 of the Chicago Tribune every Wednesday, Thursday, Friday and Sunday.