Thursday, May 28, 2015

Longtime editor who championed for Virginia to apologize for slavery announces resignation

Ken Woodley
Ken Woodley, who has worked at The Farmville Herald, a biweekly newspaper in Farmville, Va., for 36 years, 25 of them as editor, has announced he will resign from the newspaper effective Friday, reports the Virginia Press Association. Woodley plans "to write a book recounting the triumphant 16-month crusade that saw the Virginia General Assembly create the Brown v. Board of Education Scholarship program in 2004, giving educational opportunity back to those from whom it was stolen during five years of 'massive resistance' in Prince Edward County."

In 2007 on the 400th anniversary of Virginia's settlement, Woodley was one of the most vocal advocates for Virginia to issue an apology for slavery. He has won numerous Virginia Press Association awards and is a two-time winner of VPA Lathan Mims Award for editorial service to the community. In 2006, the Virginia chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists presented Woodley with its annual George Mason Award for lasting contributions to journalism.

In his final column, Woodley writes: "How do you say farewell, as editor, to an entire community? And after 36 years, the last quarter century spent 'preaching' from this pulpit, a privilege never anticipated? This is the last time we will meet in this space and on these pages, and the journey to find those farewell words begins now. And I stumble taking the first step. I can find no words, but at the same time words fall like raindrops all around me, and I stand in their puddles, looking down and seeing my own reflection." (Read more)

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