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Poynter.
  • Journalists reflect on Ben Bradlee’s life and career

    The editor who presided over the rise of The Washington Post and the fall of a president died Tuesday at 93. Here’s what journalists are saying about Bradlee’s legendary life and career:

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  • Ben Bradlee dead at 93
    FILE - In this June 21, 1971 file photo, Washington Post Executive Director Ben Bradlee and Post Publisher Katharine Graham leave U.S. District Court in Washington. Bradlee died Tuesday, Oct. 21, 2014, according to the Washington Post. (AP Photo, File)

    FILE – In this June 21, 1971 file photo, Washington Post Executive Director Ben Bradlee and Post Publisher Katharine Graham leave U.S. District Court in Washington. Bradlee died Tuesday, Oct. 21, 2014, according to the Washington Post. (AP Photo, File)

    The Washington Post | The New Yorker | Time

    Ben Bradlee, editor of The Washington Post from 1965 to 1991, died on Tuesday at 93 of natural causes, former managing editor Robert G. Kaiser wrote for the Post.

    Bradlee’s time as editor of the Post included coverage of Watergate and the Pentagon Papers — still some of journalism’s biggest stories.

    During his tenure, a paper that had previously won just four Pulitzer Prizes, only one of which was for reporting, won 17 more, including the Public Service award for the Watergate coverage.

    “Ben Bradlee was the best American newspaper editor of his time and had the greatest impact on his newspaper of any modern editor,” said Donald E. Graham, who succeeded his mother as publisher of The Post and Mr. Bradlee’s boss.

    “So much of The Post is Ben,” Mrs. Graham said in 1994, three years after Bradlee retired as editor. “He created it as we know it today.”

    David Remnick wrote about Bradlee’s death for The New Yorker.

    Recently, Tom Zito, a feature writer and critic at the Post during the Bradlee era, told me this story:

    “One afternoon in the fall of 1971, I was summoned to Ben’s office. I was the paper’s rock critic at the time. A few minutes earlier, at the Post’s main entrance, a marshal from the Department of Justice had arrived, bearing a grand-jury subpoena in my name. As was the case ever since the Department of Justice and the Post had clashed over the Pentagon Papers, earlier that year, rules about process service dictated that the guard at the front desk call Bradlee’s office, where I was now sitting and being grilled about the business of the grand jury and its potential impact on the paper. I explained that my father was of Italian descent, lived in New Jersey, had constructed many publicly financed apartment buildings—and was now being investigated by the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York regarding income-tax evasion. ‘Your father?’ Ben exclaimed in disbelief, and then called out to his secretary, ‘Get John Mitchell on the phone.’ In less than a minute, the voice of the Attorney General could be heard on the speaker box, asking, somewhat curtly, ‘What do you want, Ben?’ In his wonderfully gruff but patrician demeanor, and flashing a broad smile to me, Ben replied, ‘What I want is for you to never again send a subpoena over here asking any of my reporters to give grand-jury testimony about their parents. And if you do, I’m going to personally come over there and shove it up your ass.’ The subpoena was quashed the next day.”

    The Post has quotes on Bradlee from a number of its stars, including Bob Woodward and Carl Bernstein.

    “Ben was a true friend and genius leader in journalism. He forever altered our business. His one unbending principle was the quest for the truth and the necessity of that pursuit. He had the courage of an army. Ben had an intuitive understanding of the history of our profession, its formative impact on him and all of us. But he was utterly liberated from that. He was an original who charted his own course. We loved him deeply, and he will never be forgotten or replaced in our lives.”

    On October 3, Jill Abramson, former executive editor of The New York Times, wrote about Bradlee for Time, including how he weathered the scandal after it was revealed that Pulitzer winner Janet Cooke made up the work that won her that Pulitzer.

    During that time Ben showed what he was made of. He had to return a Pulitzer Prize that Cooke had won about a made up 8-year-old heroin addict. He had to invite his boss, Donald Graham, to have breakfast at his house and tell him that he and his vaunted team of all-stars, made famous in the movie All the President’s Men, had failed the Graham family. He had to face his own crushed newsroom and, ultimately, the Post’s disappointed readers.

    This would surely have brought down any other editor. So why did Ben Bradlee survive and triumph? It wasn’t simply because he was so powerful or well connected, having transformed the Post during Watergate into a national newspaper and showcase for the blazingly talented writers he hired and nurtured. Bob Woodward tried to explain Ben’s durability after the top editors at the Times lost their jobs in the Jayson Blair scandal. “Bradlee was a great editor and loved by everybody,” Woodward said. “Not just the people who knew him well, but down the ranks.”

    On Tuesday night, journalists shared quotes from Bradlee on Twitter.

    "In the Washington bureau of Newsweek, even one's most beautiful prose was rewritten by some faceless bastard in New York." #BenBradlee

    — Carlos Lozada (@CarlosLozadaWP) October 22, 2014

    "Get some better information next time." RIP #BenBradlee

    — Sean Robinson (@seanrobinsonTNT) October 22, 2014

    #BenBradlee in 1974: His first words were, "Look, pal, I know what you'll write. People say I'm cruel. I'm not." http://t.co/uprqqMw12Y

    — Jack Limpert (@bluepencil2) October 13, 2014

    #BenBradlee: "I never believed that Nixon could fully resurrect himself. And the proof of that was in the obits." pic.twitter.com/bXVs1rs9I7

    — Bryan Logan (@BWLogan) October 22, 2014

    "Worry? Me, worry?I don't fucking worry!" Ben Bradlee to young David Remnick – from my NPR obit for Bradlee http://t.co/c5PdH0sSBT

    — David Folkenflik (@davidfolkenflik) October 22, 2014

    Words to run a newsroom by: "Hire people smarter than you are and encourage them to bloom." #BenBradlee http://t.co/Hd0SgWX4ct

    — Jeff Good (@jgoodstories) October 22, 2014

    #BenBradlee in his memoir, on Richard Nixon: "In his darkest hour, he gave the press its finest hour."

    — Carlos Lozada (@CarlosLozadaWP) October 22, 2014

    "Those [Watergate] tapes are going to take me to my grave with a huge smile on my face.." -Ben Bradlee http://t.co/Bgv45Hrtc5

    — Christine Delargy (@CADelargy) October 22, 2014

    "Sometimes, he’d saunter by your desk & say encouraging things like, “Don’t f— it up.” http://t.co/AMhFDG2u2c #RIP pic.twitter.com/Y3XBpC1h70

    — David Beard (@dabeard) October 22, 2014

    Ben Bradlee: "If you made the paper better every day, … and you reached higher, the paper would get better." http://t.co/2QakFF6Hde

    — Michael Gold (@migold) October 22, 2014


    Ben Bradlee, former executive editor of The Washington Post, seated during an event sponsored by The Washington Post to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Watergate Monday, June 11, 2012 at the Watergate office building in Washington. Bradlee died on Tuesday. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

    Ben Bradlee, former executive editor of The Washington Post, seated during an event sponsored by The Washington Post to commemorate the 40th anniversary of Watergate Monday, June 11, 2012 at the Watergate office building in Washington. Bradlee died on Tuesday. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon)

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  • Poynter to host African journalists turned away from USF St. Petersburg

    The Poynter Institute will host a group of Edward R. Murrow journalists from African countries whose visit to the University of South Florida at St. Petersburg was canceled because of concerns about spread of the Ebola virus, Poynter president Tim Franklin announced today.

    In an impromptu meeting, Franklin told Poynter staff that the decision to host the journalists — who are not from Ebola-affected countries — is rooted in the best traditions of the institute.

    “Poynter has a long history and tradition of inclusion, it has a long history of training journalists, both here and abroad, and I think in that spirit, it’s something we can and should do at Poynter,” Franklin said.

    The journalists were scheduled to visit USF St. Petersburg for five days starting Oct. 31 as part of the Edward R. Murrow Program for Journalists, which brings 100 international journalists to the United States annually. University administrators canceled that visit, citing “concerns about transmission of Ebola virus

    RELATED: “Covering Ebola: A Poynter Conversation”

    The university’s decision to cancel the program Friday was motivated by worries from faculty, students and staff, said Jessica Blais, director of communications for the university and former director of marketing for the Poynter Institute.

    “One of the things we’ve emphasized to people over the last couple of days is that given concerns of faculty, students and staff, we really did not feel confident that we could present the program in the excellent form that we’ve provided in the past,” Blais said.

    On Monday, a few days after USF St. Petersburg finalized its decision not to host the event, World Partnerships Inc., a not-for-profit state department grantee that handles logistics and travel arrangements for the Murrow Program, reached out to Poynter and asked whether the institute would consider hosting the program. On Tuesday afternoon, the institute agreed to host the journalists for three days, starting Oct. 31 and continuing to Nov. 4.

    Although the not-for-profit got fairly short notice to find a host for the journalists, it’s used to adapting on the fly, said Gary Springer, president of World Partnerships Inc. The company often has to accommodate travel plans for many such international trips at once.

    “We run programs and groups through here almost every week,” Springer said.

    The list of journalists visiting St. Petersburg has been altered slightly since the university’s cancellation Friday. On Monday, the U.S. Department of State decided two journalists — from Liberia and Sierra Leone — would have their trip placed on hold because they come from areas affected by the outbreak, said Nathan Arnold, a spokesperson from the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

    When news of the university’s cancellation was made public Monday, several people from Poynter suggested that the institute host the Murrow group, said Kelly McBride, vice president of academic programs at the institute.

    “It seemed like the right thing to do, and I was really proud that people wanted to step up and do this,” McBride said.

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Written by Administrator   

Don Edwards

WSYR / WSTM-TV

Club President: 1965

The road to success for Don Edwards started in a small southern Ohio village and led to the general manager job at a major Syracuse television station, and later to the top job in the broadcast journalism department at Syracuse University's Newhouse School.
Along the way, Don moved to Canton, Ohio, where he graduated from high school and soon enlisted as a private in the U.S. Army. It was 1950 and the Korean War was getting underway. By the time he was discharged in 1953, he had been promoted to lieutenant.

His interest in radio and television news brought him to Syracuse University, for which his "extensive research" showed him was where the best broadcast journalism program in the United States was located. Like many students who had been in the military, Don wanted to complete his education as soon as possible. He earned his bachelor's degree in just three years, then wasted no time starting on a master's degree in broadcast journalism in 1956. Meanwhile at SU, Don met his wife, Nancy, and, as he puts it, "I wound up trading my master's degree for a wedding license."

That same year, Don joined the staff of WSYR-TV and radio as a photographer-reporter. "In those early days of TV," he explains, "when a photographer went out on an assignment, he often was the reporter, too." So the photographer also wrote a story for the WSYR radio stations!

Don decided early that he wanted to get into management, so in 1958 he switched to producing documentaries, and directing special projects at the television and radio stations. Seven years later, he became the WSYR's public affairs director, a position he held until 1975 when he was named general manager of WSYR-FM.

During his early days at WSYR, one of Don's interests was the search for a plentiful supply of fresh water for Onondaga County. He realized that a good water supply was badly needed if the area was to develop and grow. So Don worked with Onondaga County's Lake Ontario Water Committee to successfully convince voters in the 1960's to approve the $45 million expenditure to guarantee an inexhaustible supply of Lake Ontario water.

He also found time to work on several Syracuse Press Club committees in those years, and was elected president in 1965.

In 1978, Don became program manager of WSYR-TV (now WSTM-TV), and four years later, he was named general manager of the television station. During all of these changes, Don remained in the US Army Reserve. By 1976, after serving 23 years, he had achieved the rank of lieutenant colonel and decided to retire from the Army.

In 1986, SU asked Don to join the faculty of the broadcast journalism department. He decided that after 30 years in broadcast journalism, it was time to make the move. So he accepted the job offer. The following year, he was named chair of the department and continued in that position until he retired in 1999. During Don's 10 years as chair, the department's student enrollment soared from under 100 to 600-plus.

Don and his wife, a native of Central New York, are spending their retirement years in the region they most love. "The quality of life here is fantastic," he says.
--Joseph A. Porcello
 
"Our liberty depends on the freedom of the press, and that cannot be limited without being lost."
--Thomas Jefferson

Wall of Distinction


Emanuel "Blair" Henderson Sr.

The Progressive Herald

Emmanuel Blair Henderson was a columnist for The Progressive Herald, an African-American newspaper in Syracuse during the 1940s and 1950s -- a time when black people weren't included as employees in mainstream media.
Read more...Link

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