- "I like this stuff - I live it, I breathe it... And next year, it will be 40 years."
- "We have been declaring ourselves dead even more than people outside the business have been declaring us dead... We are not dying."
Reggie Stuart knows everyone in journalism. Well, perhaps not everyone, but it sure seems that way. Walk around a journalism convention with him and you won't be able to have a prolonged conversation. Senior editors will interrupt to say hello. Publishers will stop by to shake his hand. But it isn't just veterans who want a piece of Reggie - it's young folks, too. There are dozens, perhaps hundreds, of people he has mentored over the years and he continues to find and nurture talented newbies all the time. His title now is corporate recruiting consultant for the McClatchy newspaper chain, but for years was the chief recruiter for Knight Ridder and the first person from the company that many a young journalist met. His mission: To find talent for the chain and to encourage journalists any way he could, even if they wouldn't be working with him. He cares about diversity of all kinds - gender, race, ethnicity, economic status - and fights to create inclusive newsrooms across the industry. Before he became a recruiter, he was distinguished reporter and correspondent for The New York Times and KR.
I have known him for 14 years now, thanks to our alma mater, Columbia Journalism School (we were a mere 22 years apart), and our work with Society of Professional Journalists (he's a past national president), and his constant support of SAJA and its members. Asked about Reggie, Shashank Bengali, a foreign correspondent for McClatchy who Reggie recruited to Knight Ridder, wrote the following from his temporary assignment in Baghdad:
Reggie is one of the most decent people I've ever met. He cares about reporters, he keeps in touch and he's never shy about giving advice. You could fill several newsrooms with the talented journalists he brought to Knight Ridder and nurtured over the years.
Yesterday at Columbia University, Reggie was speaking to a group of editors from the Spectator, the undergrad daily, and I had a chance to listen in. I decided to make a little video as he answered questions about his start in journalism and the future of the industry. Take a look.
Here are some links featuring Reggie Stuart:
- Ida B. Wells Award from the National Association of Black Journalists, presented "to a media executive or manager who has made outstanding efforts to
make newsrooms and news coverage more accurately reflect the diversity
of the communities they serve."
- Video of acceptance speech and nomination for Robert C. Maynard Award from the National Association of Minority Media Executives.
- Newspaper Association of America on "Leaving His Mark."
- Stuart named Fellow of Society of Professional Journalists