Sarasota News Leader

03/15/2013

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I have had the pleasure of knowing Stan Zimmerman for about five years, but it seems we have known each other much longer than that. Sometimes you meet people with whom you have an instant connection, and you feel they have been part of your lives far longer than they actually have. Stan had been covering Sarasota County for several months when I "traded places," as I like to say, with longtime Pelican Press Editor Anne Johnson in May 2008. (Instead of retiring, as she had every right to do, Anne was eager to stay on part-time as associate editor; I do not know what I would have done without her.) I learned early on that Stan is a jewel of a journalist. He always makes deadline, he always keeps me updated on any changes regarding the stories he plans to turn in each week and he has an incredible store of knowledge about this community. When we started the News Leader, we could think of no better person to cover Sarasota City Government. Fortunately, he was willing to do that. No matter what is going on in the city, we trust Stan's take on things above the reports of all others. The institutional knowledge he has is too rare a thing these days, with veteran journalists having been "downsized" everywhere. Only when you have been in a community a long time, as he has — and taken in all the comings and goings with a discerning eye — can you truly understand the new news as it happens. Although news publications as a practice do not tout the gifts of their staff members, I am pleased to utilize this space from time to time to do so. A publication is its staff. Without ours, how would you know what is really going on? Editor and Publisher

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