If there’s an important track and field meet going on somewhere in the world, expect photojournalist and Gazettes/Press-Telegram correspondent Kirby Lee to be there covering the event. From Moore League track and field finals to U.S. nationals to the Olympics, Lee has been all over the world, behind the camera capturing some of the most historic moments in the sport.
“I get just as much satisfaction covering the 100-meter final at the Olympics as I do covering the CIF-SS meet,” Lee said. “I just love track and field.”
Lee is currently a contributor to USA track and field and works within the IAAF Diamond League, which is an elite series of 14 meets throughout the world. He’s part of a pool of photographers and is one of 10 worldwide that travels around to cover the series. He also continues to cover local meets for the Gazettes and the Press-Telegram, where he got his start.
“It didn’t happen overnight,” Lee said. “Like any athlete, unless you’re LeBron James or something, you have to really work for it.”
Lee was a track and field distance runner in high school when he fell in love with the sport. He went to Cal State Los Angeles, where he got a degree in math and electrical engineering before continuing his education at CSULA’s grad school. He took a beginning photo class for fun and started to go to different track and field meets to shoot for the class. Lee says he got bad grades for his work because professors said he lacked originality, but he enjoyed submitting his photos and articles to the school’s…
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