CLEVELAND (TDB) -- The editor of Ohio's largest newspaper, Doug Clifton, moments ago told his surprised staff he would retire June 1 and move to Vermont where he has been restoring a 200-year-old home. Clifton, 63, came to the newspaper from the Miami Herald in 1999 and has been downplaying persistent rumors he was planning an exit from Ohio.
His departure after 37 years in the newspaper industry comes as many metro dailies -- including The Plain Dealer -- suffer from an industry downturn that has cost advertising and readership. Clifton told his staff today, "There is no more interesting time to be in the business than right now." The complete text of the letter announcing his decision is HERE.
A replacement is not on board. Clifton, whose bio is HERE, told the staff that he respected the PD's new publisher, Terry Egger, and was not leaving because of any friction. Recently, 64 newsroom staffers took generous buyouts. (Among them the author of this blog.) The newspaper is privately owned by Advance Publishing, which is controlled by the Newhouse family. Clifton said his departure was not due to disenchantment with anything that had happened at The Plain Dealer. The newspaper is the nation's 17th largest.
There is more information about Clifton as an editor HERE