The fall in Northwest Indiana never fails to surprise, and this year was no exception. The success of our One Region program in Northwest Indiana and our Best of the Region publications that unite the whole Lake Michigan area continues to amaze me. This year's One Region meeting was sweet, with a crowd of more than 500 at the largest hotel ballroom around, especially when you realize how far we've come. Governor Mitch Daniels and veteran U.S. House Rep. Pete Visclosky were special guests at the annual meeting. Their willingness to work together in a bipartisan way on local issues was plainly evident that day and has been for a while. We all have a lot at stake when it comes to auto-making, steel, manufacturing, energy and tourism even on up to folks in southwestern Michigan. And cooperation benefits everybody. Don't blame me for not paying that much attention to candidates bickering in the press.
Good thing, I didn't have much time to pay attention anyway. My schedule quickly became a blur: Julie and I had the chance to enjoy some beautiful weather to go to the Ryder Cup and watch the celebrities play golf out at Medinah Country Club. After that our management team held a retreat at the fabulous Four Winds in New Buffalo. Then I was promoted to Operating Vice President of Lee Enterprises and on a plane going east to visit our properties in New York, South Carolina and Kentucky and west to visit Wyoming, Montana and Idaho almost before I knew it. I glimpsed some beautiful parts of the country out of the window and got to meet a whole bunch of new people. I'm sure it is just the beginning of the amazing opportunities and challenges ahead.
I was in total shock when I returned home and found out that Editor & Publisher magazine had named me Publisher of the Year. I'm commenting on these things happening because it's important that I say how humbling these experiences have been. There are many people I know in this business and other businesses who work so hard day-in and day-out and never get this kind of recognition. While I barely had time to contemplate what's going on—and there is a lot of work ahead—I think of all of the people who have helped me along the way; both my family and my professional family. There is no way to adequately thank so many people. I am lucky and blessed. And I never forget that as I watch another birthday go by, having Thanksgiving dinner with our kids and skyping with my brother, kids and grandchildren.
As you all know by now this is my favorite time of the year. It is a time for reflection and big dreams. I hope each and every one of you have continued blessings in 2013 and your holiday season is filled with joy, luck and good health.
We will see you next year with our special March/April Lake Michigan architecture and design issue coming out in February.
Bill Masterson Jr.
Publisher, The Times Media Company
Vice President of Operations, Lee Enterprises