YLS Member Spotlight: Jeff Fleischer

Jeff Fleischer packed a lot into the last year. Jeff, a journalist and author, wrote his first book, appeared on Jeopardy and found time to join the YLS Communications Committee. Read on to get his thoughts on why YLS was right for him, his biggest travel adventure and his favorite concert that paired two of the all-time greats. There are so many good non-profit opportunities. What makes YLS the right option for you? It was a great chance to work and network with other young professionals in a range of industries, on behalf of an organization that works on a number of different issues all the time. What would you say to someone interested in joining YLS? It’s a good way to meet some interesting people around your age, and a way to apply your skills with a valuable organization. Tell us what it was like to write your first book? It was both fun and challenging. The book, “The Latest Craze: A Brief History of Mass Hysterias” (Fall River/Sterling 2011) covers more than sixty different subjects, and I had about two months to write the first draft, so it required a lot of research and writing in a short time and then several months of working with the editorial and design teams before it was released. It’s designed to be a fun-to-read history book so it was fun to write, and I learned a lot about the publishing process. What has been your best work/travel adventure? I spent a year between New Zealand and the South Pacific doing research for the climate change book I’m writing now. I’d worked abroad as a journalist before, but for this project I had grant funding that let me devote all my time to covering one subject in great depth. On weekends I traveled a lot so I was also able to visit nearly all of New Zealand as well as three island nations. What is your favorite movie? There are about seventy contenders in just about any genre, but if I have to pick one, I’ll go with “It’s A Wonderful Life,” as I’ve seen it at least forty times. Favorite TV show? Currently, “Community.” All-time, either vintage “Simpsons,” “The Sopranos,” “Seinfeld” or “Taxi” Favorite book? “Working” by Studs Terkel is my favorite non-fiction book. For fiction, probably “Animal Farm” or “Cat’s Cradle.” Best concert you have attended? Bob Dylan and Paul Simon playing together in Noblesville, Indiana, in the fall of 1999. Jeff Fleischer Communications Committee Member and Author

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