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Pierre Tristam, a bio
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A native of Lebanon, Pierre Tristam spent his adolescence shadowing his reporter-mother as she interviewed the country’s warlords, wannabes and their victims. Besides turning him on to journalism, the experience shaped his—to put it politely—skeptical view of power and confessional conceits.

He left his native country in the third year of Lebanon’s 15-year civil war and earned his B.A. in history and politics at New York University. He became a naturalized citizen in a Brooklyn courthouse in 1986. After graduate school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he studied history, he began his journalism career as a reporter in the coal fields of West Virginia, penning his first by-line in September 1989. He moved to The Ledger in Lakeland, Fla., in 1995, and joined his first editorial board in 1997.

In the 52 weeks leading up to the millennium, Tristam logged 60,000 miles by van in a journey across the United States, writing a 3,000-word essay weekly on each of the 50 states. “American Impressions: An Immigrant’s Journey,” won that year’s top prize for commentary from the Florida Society of Newspaper Editors.

After joining the Daytona Beach News-Journal as an editorial writer and columnist in 2001, his background lent unique insights into the effects at home of the war on terror and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan—civil liberties, on immigrants, on the national psyche, on the local political landscape. After one lay-off too many, he created FlaglerLive, a web-only, non-profit local news service for Flagler County, Fla., in early 2010.