Mike Bires

Sports Journalism ∙ Hopewell

In July, Mike Bires celebrates his 33rd anniversary as a member of the Beaver County Times sports department.

For parts of five decades, he’s covered sports on the high school, college and professional levels. It is believed he’s had more bylined stories in that newspaper than any other reporter, news or sports.

In 1972, Mike graduated from Hopewell High School where he played football and baseball. As a college freshman, he attended Penn State Beaver where he took his first journalism class and played on the college’s baseball team.

A year later, Mike transferred to Indiana University of Pennsylvania. At IUP, he majored in English with concentrations in journalism and photography. After spending one year on the football team, he began covering Crimson Hawks for the “Penn,” the student newspaper.

After graduating from IUP in the spring of 1977, Mike landed a part-time job as a sports reporter for the Beaver County Times. From 1978-1979, he was the sports editor at The Coraopolis Record, a weekly newspaper that covered Cornell, Moon Area, Quaker Valley, Montour and West Allegheny high schools. During his time at the Record, he also worked part-time for the Beaver County Times.

In January of 1980, Mike moved on to the Observer Reporter in Washington, Pa. But his stay at the O-R didn’t last long. In July of 1980, he was hired full-time at the Beaver County Times.

As well as general assignment duties, Mike primarily covered high school sports. From 1983 through 1998, he covered the football and men’s basketball teams at the University of Pittsburgh.

In 1999, he began covering the Pittsburgh Steelers. Since 1990, Mike has coordinated a local golf page that runs on Sundays from April through September each year.

Among the events Mike has covered include numerous WPIAL and PIAA championship events, several basketball games in the Big East and NCAA tournaments, PGA and LPGA tour events including three U.S. Open championships, a few world championship boxing fights and seven Super Bowls.

He’s won awards nationally (Associated Press Sports Editors). He’s won awards regionally (Keystone Press and Golden Quill). But more important than those individual honors were the numerous occasions when the Beaver County Times’ sports staff was honored by the APSE as one of the best in the country for its circulation size.

Mike is honored and humbled to be part of the Beaver County Sports Hall of Fame induction Class of 2013. He estimates that of the 385 members now in this Hall of Fame, he’s interviewed directly or done stories on close to 230 of the men and women who’ve been inducted.

Mike and his wife, Angela, live in Cecil Township, Pa.