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Stephen Pellegrino ’12

Sports Photographer Covers the NBA and WNBA

Sports and photography. That’s what Stephen Pellegrino enjoys most in his professional life. Fortunately, he has the chance to experience both as a photographer with the National Basketball Association.

On any given day or night, Steve can be seen on the sidelines of NBA arenas in New York, Boston, Philadelphia, and other Eastern cities. The 2012 Keystone graduate wouldn’t have it any other way.

“I really love shooting sports,” Stephen says. “You never see the same thing twice. You have a split second, and you have to capture the moment. Then, you see your images and realize that other people enjoy them too. As for the players, they can look at an image and appreciate it for the rest of their lives. To me, that’s very satisfying.”

The Blakeslee, Pa., native has enjoyed sports since he was a boy and played baseball and soccer in high school. He also developed a love for photography and dreamed of combining both disciplines.

“I knew in high school that I wasn’t ever going to play professional sports. I also enjoyed photography and realized that might be a way to stay involved in sports as I got older,” Stephen says.

Stephen chose to attend Keystone, majoring in communications and minoring in photography. He refined his craft by taking photography classes and shooting Keystone athletic events.

“My teachers knew I wanted to shoot sports, and they pushed me in the right direction. I covered just about every sport there was at Keystone including baseball, softball, basketball, soccer, and more. When I graduated, I knew I was prepared.”

After earning his bachelor’s degree, Stephen began doing athletic photography for Holy Family University in Philadelphia. In 2014, he was hired by the NBA for a full-time job as a photo editor at the league’s headquarters in Secaucus, N.J. He was eventually promoted to photographer and began covering NBA and WNBA (Women’s National Basketball Association) games, including the NBA All-Star Game in Brooklyn, N.Y.

He also had the opportunity to photograph the USA women’s basketball team before they departed for last year’s

Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro. Stephen also maintains his own private photography practice and shoots college sports, including contests at Keystone, when he isn’t assigned to NBA games.

Now that he has become established with the NBA, Stephen hopes to move up the ranks.

“I’d like to have my own team to shoot rather than being assigned to multiple teams. That’s my longer-term goal. For now, I really love going to work every day.”