Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Weekly publisher Keith Rathbun dies; ran nation's largest Amish and Mennonite newspaper

Keith Rathbun
Keith Rathbun, publisher of The Budget, the nation's largest Amish and Mennonite newspaper, is dead. Rathbun collapsed at his office in Sugarcreek, Ohio, and died at a nearby hospital Tuesday. Rathbun was featured on The Rural Blog and other news outlets, such as NPR and The Wall Street Journalfor his role in running the 125-year-old weekly, which, as of 2013, had 860 correspondents who are only paid with a subscription to help bring news to 18,000 subscribers in Amish and Mennonite communities around the country. For his obituary, click here.

The Budget depends on the mail, and Rathbun was an active member of the National Newspaper Association Postal Committee. Max Heath, NNA postal chair, told The Rural Blog: "Keith was determined to improve delivery quality for his subscribers, most of whom were not candidates for electronic options so prevalent today. He was dogged in his pursuit of improved mail prep on his side and was fully palletized and entered in Cleveland to expedite his nationwide efforts to achieve excellence. His hard work for the Ohio Newspaper Association and the NNA Postal Committee led to his appointment to the board of the National Newspaper Association. He will be sorely missed by his staff, many industry friends, and leaves large shoes to fill."

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