Mina Kimes started her career as a business journalist, but her love of sports eventually landed her at ESPN in 2014. Her presence with the Worldwide Leader has grown ever since, especially when it comes to NFL coverage.
We caught up with Kimes for this week’s Friday Five…
Who is your biggest mentor?
I’ve had a number of mentors throughout my career, ranging from teachers to editors to producers that I’ve worked with on ESPN. One person who’s been extremely influential in my life (probably more than he knows) is Dan LeBatard, who not only helped me develop my voice as a personality when I was making the transition from writing to commentary, but has also modeled a path for me and many other young opinionators in sports.
What is your biggest pet peeve?
My biggest pet peeve, other than general unkindness, is when people are inconsiderate. Also, anyone who insists on communicating something over the phone that could be conveyed via text.
What is your favorite book?
It’s hard for me to pick one favorite book, so here are a few of my favorite writers: Alexander Hemon, Graham Greene, Edith Wharton, Zadie Smith, J.M. Coetzee.
If you could have dinner with any three people in history, who would they be?
My grandmother on my father’s side, because I never met her; Oprah, because I want to watch her communicate; and Marshawn Lynch, because he’s Marshawn Lynch.
What advice would you give your younger self?
If I could give my younger self one piece of advice, it would be to take more risks. As a student, I took classes I knew I’d pass with ease; as a young writer, I took on assignments that seemed manageable instead of pursuing the most rewarding stories. I was so afraid of failing (or not excelling) that I missed out on opportunities for growth. It wasn’t until later in my career that I started saying yes to things I didn’t quite feel prepared for, and I wish I had done so more often early on.
Check out all of our Friday Five features — including Troy Aikman, Adam Schefter, Andrea Kremer and more — in the Friday Five archive.