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Pressman, Steven

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Pressman, Steven

For the economist (born 1952), see Steven Pressman (economist).
Steven Pressman
Steven Pressman (2010)
Born 1955
United States
Education University of California at Berkeley
Occupation Journalist, filmmaker
Known for Author, Outrageous Betrayal

Steven Pressman is an American legal journalist, freelance journalist and investigative journalist. He is the author of a book about Werner Erhard, titled: Outrageous Betrayal, published by St. Martin's Press in 1993. In 2010, Pressman was involved in the production of a documentary film titled: To Save a Life, and served as writer, director, and producer.

Early life and education

Pressman was born in Los Angeles in 1955.[1] He obtained a Bachelor's Degree in political science in 1977 from the University of California at Berkeley.[1]



Pressman has worked as a newspaper and magazine journalist in Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., and San Francisco.[2] He wrote the book Outrageous Betrayal: The Dark Journey of Werner Erhard from est to Exile, published by St. Martin's Press in 1993.[3] He first began research for the book in 1991.[4] While engaged in researching the book, Pressman contributed writing to publications including California Lawyer, Legal Times, and The Daily Journal Corporation's California Republic – where he was senior editor.[1] Outrageous Betrayal received positive reception, from publications including Library Journal,[5] Booklist,[6] the Los Angeles Times,[7] Publishers Weekly,[8] and Westword.[9] It was cited as a reference in testimony before the United States House of Representatives, in 1995.[10]

He worked at San Francisco Daily Journal from 1995 to 1997.[4] In 1998, Landmark Education spent months in an unsuccessful attempt to compel Pressman to respond to deposition questions aimed at obtaining the confidential sources (used during research on Outrageous Betrayal) for use in the then-active litigation involving the Cult Awareness Network.[11] Throughout his journalism career he has written articles for several publications including California Lawyer,[12] Daily Journal of Los Angeles, California,[13] and the Columbia Journalism Review.[14] He contributed an article on libel law in 1994, for the United States Department of State.[15]


Pressman produced short videos for the American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco, California.[16] In 2010, he served as writer, director, and producer for the documentary film To Save a Life.[16] The documentary, retitled 50 Children: The Rescue Mission of Mr. and Mrs. Kraus, and shown on HBO in April 2013, tells the story of Gilbert and Eleanor Kraus, a Jewish couple from Philadelphia who traveled to Nazi Germany in 1939 and, with the help of the B'rith Sholom fraternal organization, saved Jewish children in Vienna from likely death in the Holocaust by finding them new homes in Philadelphia. The heroic Krauses were the grandparents of Pressman's wife, Liz Perle, and the film is based on the manuscript of a memoir left behind by Eleanor Kraus when she died in 1989. [17] [16][18]

Published works



  • "Libel Law: Finding the Right Balance", Editorial Research Reports 2, August 18, 1989
  • "Taking Cults to Court for Psychological Injuries", New Jersey Law Review, p. 4, March 9, 1992.
  • "Mixing Lawyers and Cults", California Lawyer, June 1, 1992, p. 22, 24.
  • "Suit Against New-Age Groups Hit Snags", Legal Times, p14., November 30, 1992.


External links

  • ( 23 links to legal documents involving Pressman)
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