Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter and columnist Michael A. Hiltzik has been a staff member of the Los Angeles Times for more than 20 years. In that time he has worked as a financial and political writer, a foreign correspondent serving in Africa and Russia, and as a senior technology writer. Currently he writes the twice-weekly column “Golden State,” covering a wide range of business and economic issues relevant to life in California.
Mr. Hiltzik and Times Staff Writer Chuck Philips received the 1999 Pulitzer Prize for their articles exposing corruption in the entertainment industry, particularly in the recorded music business. Among other topics, the articles illuminated the operations of the Grammy Awards organization, the non-profit National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, showing that the Academy’s two charities paid out only a bare fraction of the millions of dollars it received as donations from record companies and performers to assist indigent and infirm musicians, while paying its own executives lavish salaries. Other articles in the award-winning package described the shortcomings of drug treatment programs sponsored by Hollywood institutions, and identified new forms of “payola,” or illicit payments for the promotion of music recordings, in the radio industry.
Mr. Hiltzik is the author of the book “Dealers of Lightning: Xerox PARC and the Dawn of the Computer Age,” published to widespread critical acclaim in 1999, which chronicles the invention at Xerox Corporation’s legendary computer lab of such world-changing technologies as the personal computer, the laser printer, Ethernet, and the Windows-style graphical display.
Mr. Hiltzik joined The Times in 1981 after working at the Providence (R.I.) Journal-Bulletin and the Buffalo (N.Y.) Courier Express. He has won numerous awards for excellence in reporting, including a Silver Gavel from the American Bar Association and a citation from the Overseas Press Club for coverage of East Africa. In 1996 he was a finalist for two Pulitzer Prizes: in explanatory journalism for his coverage of the managed care revolution in California, and in deadline reporting for his coverage of the merger of ABC/Capital Cities and The Walt Disney Co.
The author also of the nonfiction book “A Death in Kenya,” published in 1991 by Delacorte Press, Mr. Hiltzik graduated from Colgate University in 1973 with a degree in English and received a master of science degree in journalism from the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University in 1974. He lives in Southern California with his wife and two children.