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Paul Woody

A native of Roanoke, VA, Paul Woody graduated from Patrick Henry High School and Virginia Commonwealth University, where he earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English. While attending VCU, Woody started his career in journalism as a sportswriter for The Commonwealth Times, VCU’s student newspaper.  His first full-time newspaper job was for the Lexington, Ky., Herald and Herald-Leader. He and his wife returned to Richmond, where he served as editor for VCU Magazine. In December of 1979, he was hired by the Richmond News Leader to cover high school sports. Over the next 40-years, Woody would be the written voice for sports in Central Virginia and establish himself as one of the best writers and journalists in the Commonwealth, first with The News Leader and then with the Richmond Times-Dispatch when the two papers merged in 1992. Throughout his career, Woody covered all levels of sports in and around Richmond, the state and occasionally the country. He is perhaps best known for his coverage of the Washington Commanders franchise. Beginning in 1980, Woody was the primary beat reporter for the Richmond paper’s Washington NFL coverage, a role he held until he was promoted to full-time columnist in 2008, forming a bond of mutual respect with legendary Hall of Fame coach Joe Gibbs. Throughout the course of his career, Woody earned numerous awards for his writing and sports coverage including: 15 Pro Football Writers of America awards, including 7 top-3 columnist awards; 3 Associated Press Sports Editor Awards; 10 Virginia Press Association Awards, including 7 top-three finishes for columns; and 2 U.S. Basketball Writers Association Awards. He was able to gain the respect of the players, coaches, other media members, all while speaking his mind and relaying those thoughts effortlessly to paper.

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