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They say that journalists write the first draft of history. This is abundantly true in Rich Steier's case. Where there was no institutional memory -- or worse, when the institutions actively sought to bury the facts of what happened -- Rich was there to illuminate the darkness. Rich went inside the sausage factory and described exactly how that unsavory meal was prepared -- and then served up the stories of corruption right here in River City, again and again. If we lived under a dictatorship, I'm sure he would have been disappeared by now.

Rich has a profound sense of humanity, which is an essential gift for a journalist who both wants to inform and to entertain. It's a godsend that he had so many pages to fill over the years. Without him, the story of NYC labor would truly be obscure. He raised up many who labored in this vineyard, and who deserved the credit that no one else would give them. It may not be an overstatement to say that if there is any meaningful, honest, and unvarnished history of New York City's civil servants and their unions over the last 40 years, Rich wrote it.

Alan Saly

From: After decades, a time to move on

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