Mike Connelly's speaking career is rooted in his professional experience. After graduating from the University of Iowa, Connelly worked for a multitude of publications, beginning with the Wall Street Journal in 1981 and continuing on to St. Paul Pioneer Press, The Baltimore Sun, and the Congressional Quarterly. At the Quarterly, Connelly took on a more direct leadership role, serving as vice president of operations, and later of product development. He was also on the panel of the Florida First Amendment Foundation and Florida Society of Newspaper Editors.
Connelly went on to be the executive editor of the Herald-Tribune, helping earn the publication a Pulitzer Prize. After nine years at the Tribune, Connelly moved to The Buffalo News, where he is currently the editor.