News Leadership 2007

ASNE recognizes longtime Florida journalist with editorial leadership award

Posted 3/15/2007 1:00:00 PM

RESTON, Va. — The American Society of Newspaper Editors will honor Andrew Barnes, editor emeritus and retired chief executive officer, St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times, as the recipient of the ASNE Award for Editorial Leadership. The award, the Society’s most prestigious honor, will be presented at ASNE’s annual convention in Washington, March 27-30.

During Barnes’ leadership at the St. Petersburg Times, he successfully fought off a hostile takeover attempt to keep the newspaper locally owned and independent, and then significantly grew the newspaper’s circulation. During his tenure, he led a substantial expansion of the newspaper’s owner, The Poynter Institute for Media Studies, a school for journalists, future journalists and teachers of journalism.

“Andy left the St. Petersburg Times, Poynter Institute and Newspaper Association of America all more robust, more prosperous and simply better than when he arrived,” said ASNE President David A. Zeeck, executive editor of The News Tribune, Tacoma, Wash. “As Jim Naughton said in his letter nominating Andy for this award: 'It was (Andy’s) conviction that democracy is dependent on news and that news coverage is dependent on resources. Nelson Poynter called newspapering a sacred trust. Andy Barnes more than kept the trust.’”

Success in nurturing the best in journalism, while growing a strong newspaper is one of the reasons Barnes was selected for the award. He says, “I am honored to have my work recognized by my peers. Preserving the value of honest journalism in a time of change was the hardest thing I attempted, harder than fighting off Wall Street, and it is even harder now. Fortunately, we continue to attract distinguished men and women to this wonderfully rewarding craft.”

The ASNE Award for Editorial Leadership was first given in 2002 to recognize the men and women who guide America’s newspapers. Past recipients of the award are Paul Steiger, managing editor of The Wall Street Journal; H. Brandt Ayers, editor and publisher of The Anniston (Ala.) Star; John Carroll, editor of the Los Angeles Times; Zack Stalberg, former editor of the Philadelphia Daily News; and co-honorees Jim Amoss, editor of the Times-Picayune, New Orleans, and Stanley R. Tiner, executive editor of the The Sun Herald, Biloxi, Miss.

Barnes will be presented with the award during the Wednesday luncheon, March 28.

ASNE, founded in 1922, with about 700 members, is the main organization of the directing editors of daily newspapers in the Americas. The organization is leading efforts to protect First Amendment rights and enhance the free flow of information, to promote the newspaper’s role in providing information necessary to the informed practice of citizenship, to encourage innovation and celebrate creativity in newspapers and the new media environment, to drive the quest for diversity and inclusion in the workplace and news content, and to bolster media credibility and improve high school journalism.