Robert Gagliardi, left, with Tommy Deas.

The Associated Press Sports Editors celebrates its 50th year in 2023. To mark this milestone, a series of interviews with the organization’s past presidents will be unveiled throughout the year. This is the first of those interviews.

Tommy Deas, who was APSE president in 2015-16, is interviewed by St. Louis Post-Dispatch digital sports editor Erik Hall.

Deas is currently the Southeastern Conference cross-team leader Alabama sports editor for the USA TODAY Sports Network. He was the first APSE president to also serve as the APSE third vice president, which represents small publications.

In this interview, he discusses how a car ride with Michael Anastasi helped him get involved with APSE. He reveals the advice from his presidential predecessor Gerry Ahern that most helped him succeed as APSE president. Plus, find out the origins of APSE Thai Night that Deas introduced.

If you are a former APSE president and have not conducted or scheduled an interview, reach out to Erik Hall at