Taylor Press publisher Richard Stone announced Tuesday that he would retire effective March 1.
“It’s been on my mind lately, what to do next” he said. “I talked it over with management and we reached the decision that this was a good time to make a move. It’s moving a little faster than I expected but I have faith in Jason Hennington and his leadership to serve this community at the highest level.”
Prior to taking the reins at the Taylor Press, Stone built a successful consulting business, mostly working with small mom-and-pop newspapers but also helping businesses with marketing and communications issues. In the last year, he said, several companies had reached out to him for help.
“There are some great opportunities out there but I can’t take advantage of most of them while also serving as publisher of a newspaper,” he said.
“Richard is leaving some pretty big shoes to fill. He will surely be missed,” said Daniel Philhower, Vice President at Granite Publications, the company that manages the Taylor Press and eight other community newspapers. “But, we’re not losing him. We’ve already asked him to help analyze and assist on the editorial product at another one of Granite’s papers.”
Stone came to the Press in May of 2014 and shepherded it through a tumultuous time after converting to twice-weekly distribution. He raised the profile of the newspaper, built a successful quarterly lifestyle magazine, Taylor 76574, and established a strong presence for the paper on social media. He lead the staff experiments in innovative video programs like “Around the Watercooler” and “Pints, Politics & Culture.” Under his leadership, the paper won more than a dozen statewide press citations, including finishing third in 2015 and second last year in the Sweepstakes competition.