Steve Paulson was born in Rome, Italy, where his
father worked with the United Nations. His family eventually settled
in Milwaukee, where Steve spent endless hours hanging out on tennis
courts. In high school, he won Milwaukees City Championship,
but dreams of a tennis career quickly faded.
Steve went on to study European literature at Earlham
College in Richmond, Indiana, then freelanced for several Milwaukee
newspapers. After earning a masters degree in journalism at
the University of Wisconsin, he stumbled into public radio. He worked
as a reporter and talk show producer and host at Wisconsin Public
Radio and then helped create To the Best of Our Knowledge in 1990.
Over the years, he has also done cultural reporting for NPRs
Morning Edition, All Things Considered and Weekend Edition.
One of the pleasures of working on To the Best
of Our Knowledge is the chance to indulge certain intellectual passions
- even ones that dont seem terribly high-minded. In
the early 90s I went through my early Elvis phase. And I talked
to lots of young scholars who were deconstructing pop culture,
Steve says. He then switched gears and got hooked on field biologists
like Jane Goodall, George Schaller and Roger Payne.
In 2006 Steve's interests took another turn when
he became a Templeton-Cambridge Journalism Fellow in Science &
Religion. His in-depth study of the relationship between science
and religion led to TTBOOK's 5-hour series "Electrons to Enlightenment"
and to the follow-up series "Science and the Search for Meaning."
In addition to his radio work, Steve has written about science &
religion for Salon, Slate and Huffington Post. Oxford University
Press recently published Steve's book "Atoms and Eden: Conversations
on Religion & Science" - an edited collection of interviews
with leading figures in the science and religion debate, including
E.O. Wilson, Francis Collins, Richard Dawkins, Karen Armstrong,
Sam Harris, Elaine Pagels, Steve Pinker, John Haught, Paul Davies
and Steven Weinberg.
In 2008 Steve traveled to Turkey with a dozen journalists
as part of the International Reporting Project, where they talked
with religious leaders, filmmakers, journalists, Kurdish activists,
and politicians, including Prime Minister Erdogan In 2009 he joined
another group of journalists to attend seminars on evolution and
the brain in Cambridge, England. Since then Steve has given a number
of public talks on science and religion, and moderated panels on
a variety of subjects, ranging from WikiLeaks to the new science
of psychedelic drugs.
To the Best of Our Knowledge is a great radio
show for people who are intellectually curious, Steve says.
I feel very lucky to work on this program.