Walking Off  | American Journalism Review
 AJR  The Beat
From AJR,   June 2003

Walking Off   

Walker Lundy makes a surprise departure in Philly.

By Kathryn S. Wenner
Kathryn S. Wenner, a former AJR associate editor, is a copy editor at the Washington Post.     


Not quite a year-and-a-half into his tenure as editor of the Philadelphia Inquirer, Walker Lundy surprises his newsroom by announcing he will retire this summer. Lundy, 60, was vacationing in California when word began to leak, and Publisher Robert Hall hastily informed staffers after telling Lundy to fly home. In a memo, Lundy, who did not return AJR's phone calls, thanked the staff "for taking in a stranger from out of town" and praised them for "some memorable journalism" and their roles in a new zoning plan that included much job reshuffling. Hall, who says Lundy "has really changed the focus of the paper more into the readers of this marketplace," says he doesn't think that budget restraints were a significant factor in Lundy's decision, saying it sprang instead from conversations between Lundy and his wife. Lundy's memo says he wants "to live on a lake and drive a boat fast...and go for walks and travel with Saralyn." Lundy has spent 39 years in newspapering, mostly with Knight Ridder. He led the St. Paul Pioneer Press to a Pulitzer Prize and joined the Inky after the resignation of Editor Robert J. Rosenthal (see Bylines, December 2001, and "Identity Crisis," January/February 2002).

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