Sentinel’s Silbernagel named News Person of Year

An accomplished nearly 40-year career working for Colorado newspapers was recognized Friday, when The Daily Sentinel’s longtime editorial page editor Bob Silbernagel was named the 2013 Newspaper Person of the Year by the Colorado Press Association.

Silbernagel — who has led the Sentinel’s editorial page since 1995 — is set to retire in March, but the award is in recognition of Silbernagel’s long history of contributions to Colorado newspapers.

“It’s a little (bittersweet), but I’m ready to move on to a different part of my career, so this was a nice way to be recognized at the end of my journalism career,” Silbernagel said Friday.

Silbernagel was nominated for the award by Sentinel Publisher Jay Seaton, who lauded him for being a consistent, aggressive voice for open and accountable government.

“Silbernagel is not a purveyor of sound bites or catchy gotchas,” Seaton wrote. “He is a careful journalist whose logic and dispassionate presentation of undisputed facts makes his editorials not just compelling, but illuminating.”

Further, Seaton wrote, “For 33 years, Silbernagel has lent his voice to the pages of the Sentinel, and for 18, his has been the voice of the Sentinel.”

Before leading the editorial section of the paper, Silbernagel was a political reporter, environmental writer, business writer, city editor and bureau reporter — earning about two dozen journalism awards over that time.

A prolific writer, Silbernagel has also penned three books over his career, including his latest effort, “Troubled Trails: The Meeker Affair and the Expulsion of the Utes from Colorado,” published in 2011.

“I had the good fortune to work with Bob for 30-plus years,” said former Sentinel managing editor and longtime Silbernagel colleague Denny Herzog. “His list of traits that make him a great journalist is lengthy. But the one thing that always stood out to me was his rock-solid dependability. He was the go-to guy’s go-to guy. Whatever it was you needed, Bob would do it. And never complain. I wish him nothing but the best in retirement.”


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A loss to the Sentinel IMO.

Bob, I hope the rest of your days are as fulfilling to you.

Congratulations to Bob on both his award and his retirement.  Yes, it’s a loss, but it’s Bob’s gain too.  It’s time to take a rest while he’s still young enough to enjoy it.

Congratulations Bob.  You and John Elway.  Going out on top.  Also know the next third of your life will be the absolute best.

Wow.  Newsman of the year.  Pretty damned good for a kid who started out at a borrowed desk with a stolen typewriter in the unheated backroom of an obscure mountain newspaper working by the word where your only wholly owned asset was half of the half consumed bottle of Jack Daniels in the bottom left drawer.

It has been a wonder to standby and watch you perfect your craft, but more importantly, to assume the voice of Western Colorado in a town where you are respected and loved.

Congratulations My Friend.  If there is a more deserving individual neither I or the Colorado Press Association have yet to meet him.

Ahem, for the record, I stole the typewriter.  Silbernagel just used it.

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