Jan. 9 Muscatine Journal column

George Althoff, the publisher of a group of newspapers in Wisconsin, is a friend and mentor who was brave —and smart —enough to hire me twice. At least that’s what I like to think.

It was 10 years ago this month that Althoff, who was then publisher of the Daily News in Winona, Minn., hired me to be his editor. He made me an editor for the first time after having hired me as a reporter at the Ottumwa Courier in 1991.

There may still be a few people in Winona who question his wisdom for hiring me the second time, but I learned a lot from him. One of those lessons included his fondness for the saying: “Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.”

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