- Columbus (Ohio) Citizen-Journal. Newspaper carrier, 1968-70. Citizen-Journal died in 1985.
- Shenandoah (Iowa) Evening Sentinel. Sports reporter, 1971-72; intern 1975; reporter, editorial page editor, managing editor, 1976-77. The Tinley family sold the Sentinel to Park Newspapers in the 1980s and the Sentinel died in 1993.
- Daily Skiff, Texas Christian University. Various positions, including editor, 1972-76. Still going strong.
- Des Moines Register. Copy editor, assistant city editor, deputy metro/Iowa editor, reporter, 1977-85; religion writer and writing coach, 1998-2000. Still publishing (but sister paper, the Des Moines Tribune, died in 1982). My last project for the Register was the launch of Hometown, a special section based in Fort Dodge, Iowa, in 1985. Hometown was killed four months after launch, two months after I left. Register’s sale to Gannett, announced in January 1985, prompted in the inquiry that led to my departure two months later.
- Kansas City Times. Assistant national/mid-America editor, national/mid-America editor, 1985-1990. The Times was merged with the Kansas City Star in 1990. Though the Times was the morning paper, the Star’s name survived, making the Times the only publication to actually die on my watch.
- Kansas City Star. Assistant managing editor, national/mid-America, 1990-91. The Star (owned by Capital Cities/ABC when I was there) is still publishing. But since I left, it has been sold to Disney, then Knight-Ridder, then McClatchy.
- Minot Daily News. Editor, 1991-92. The Daily News is still publishing. But it converted from afternoon to morning on my watch and was sold by the Buckner News Alliance and Donrey (an odd 50-50 partnership) to Ogden Newspapers not long after I was fired.
- Omaha World-Herald. Reporter, 1993-98; national correspondent and writing coach, 2000-2005. Warren Buffet bought the World-Herald from the employee owners last year.
- American Press Institute. Director of tailored programs, 2005-2008. API closes today after 66 years of training leaders of the newspaper business. The Newspaper Association of America Foundation and API announced last month that they were “merging,” but that appears to be a merger in the sense that bug merges with a windshield. I visited my former API colleagues there yesterday as they were wrapping up their work. I choked up a little when I saw the note pictured above, left by one of the many thousands of journalists, journalism professors and newspaper executives who attended API seminars through the years. It expresses my feelings about API and the feelings of many others I know. Godspeed, friends! Update: I’m encouraging people to share their memories with a #thanksapi hashtag on Twitter or on Facebook. And I’ve Storified the online discussion of API’s closing.
- Cedar Rapids Gazette. Editor and other assortedtitles, 2008-2010. Still publishing under the same ownership.
- TBD. Director of community engagement, 2010-2011. Whacked most of the staff last year and carrying on in name only with one full-time staff member.
- Journal Register Co. and Digital First Media. Director of community engagement, 2011-present. We’re out to transform the news business. Need I explain why?
As the American Press Institute closes, another piece of my past fades away
March 23, 2012 by Steve Buttry