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The San Diego Union-Tribune

the san diego union-tribune obituaries, the san diego union-tribune
The San Diego Union-Tribune is an American metropolitan daily newspaper, published in San Diego, California

Its name derives from a 1992 merger between the two major daily newspapers at the time, The San Diego Union and the San Diego Evening Tribune The name changed to U-T San Diego in 2012 but was changed again to The San Diego Union-Tribune in 2015 In 2015, it was acquired by Tribune Publishing, later renamed tronc


  • 1 History
    • 11 Predecessors
    • 12 Acquisition and merger by Copley Press and subsequent sale to Platinum Equity
    • 13 Redesign
    • 14 Purchase by MLIM Holdings
    • 15 Rebranding to U-T San Diego
    • 16 Acquisition of the North County Times
    • 17 U-T TV
    • 18 Acquisition of weekly newspapers
    • 19 Purchase by Tribune Publishing
    • 110 Closure of San Diego printing facilities
    • 111 Gannett offer and name change
  • 2 Headquarters
  • 3 Awards
    • 31 Pulitzer Prizes
  • 4 Criticisms
    • 41 Copleys and Platinum Equity
    • 42 Manchester and Lynch
      • 421 Downtown redevelopment
      • 422 Endorsements and polling
  • 5 Publishers
  • 6 Notable people
  • 7 See also
  • 8 References
  • 9 External links


San Diego Union building, c 1870s San Diego Sun building, 1908 San Diego Daily Bee building, 1908


The predecessor newspapers of the Union-Tribune were:

  • San Diego Herald, founded 1851 and closed April 7, 1860; John Judson Ames was its first editor and proprietor
  • San Diego Sun, founded 1861 and merged with the Evening Tribune in 1939
  • San Diego Union, founded October 10, 1868
  • San Diego Evening Tribune, founded December 2, 1895

In addition, the San Diego Union purchased the San Diego Daily Bee in 1888, and a for a brief time the combined newspaper was named the San Diego Union and Daily Bee

Acquisition and merger by Copley Press and subsequent sale to Platinum Equity

Both the Union and the Tribune were acquired by Copley Press in 1928 and were merged on February 2, 1992 The merged newspaper was sold to the private investment group Platinum Equity of Beverly Hills, California, on March 18, 2009


On August 17, 2010, the Union-Tribune changed its design to improve "clarity, legibility, and ease of use" Changes included being printed on thinner, 100 percent recycled paper, moving the comics to the back of the business section, and abbreviating the title The San Diego Union-Tribune on the front page to U-T San Diego The U-T nameplate was created by Jim Parkinson, a type designer who also created nameplates for The Rolling Stone, Esquire, and Newsweek

Purchase by MLIM Holdings

In November 2011, Platinum Equity sold the newspaper to MLIM Holdings, a company led by Doug Manchester, a San Diego real estate developer and "an outspoken supporter of conservative causes" The purchase price was reportedly in excess of $110 million Manchester built two landmark downtown hotels, the Manchester Grand Hyatt Hotel and the San Diego Marriott Hotel and Marina His group also owns the Grand Del Mar luxury resort in San Diego

Rebranding to U-T San Diego

On January 3, 2012, the newspaper announced that it would use the name U-T San Diego "on all of our media products and communications"; the newspaper's website formerly SignOnSanDiegocom would use the name UTSanDiegocom The official announcement explained the change as being intended to "unify our print and digital products under a single brand with a clear and consistent expectation of quality"

Acquisition of the North County Times

U-T San Diego bought the North County Times in 2012 On October 15, 2012, the North County Times ceased publication and became the U-T North County Times, which was an edition of the U-T with some North County–specific content Six months later the U-T North County Times name was dropped and the newspaper became a North County edition of the U-T


In June 2012, U-T San Diego launched U-T TV, a television news channel The network featured news, lifestyle, and editorial content produced by the newspaper's staff, and was created as part of the newspaper's growing emphasis on multi-platform content under Manchester

By October 2013, just over a year after its launch, the network re-formatted with a focus on news, amidst a number of major departures among the channel's staff

On February 19, 2014, U-T TV was discontinued, but the network's remaining staff was retained to produce video content for the newspaper's digital properties

Acquisition of weekly newspapers

In November 2013, the newspaper bought eight more local weekly newspapers in the San Diego area, which continued publication under their own names

Purchase by Tribune Publishing

On May 7, 2015, it was announced that the Tribune Publishing Company, publisher of the Los Angeles Times, the Chicago Tribune, and other newspapers, had reached a deal to acquire U-T San Diego and its associated properties for $85 million The sale ended the newspaper's 146 years of private ownership

The transaction was completed on May 21, 2015 On the same date, the newspaper reintroduced its previous branding as The San Diego Union-Tribune

The Union-Tribune and the Los Angeles Times became part of a new operating entity known as the California News Group, with both newspapers led by Times publisher and chief executive officer Austin Beutner The two newspapers reportedly would retain distinct operations, but there would be a larger amount of synergy and content sharing between them

The acquisition did not include the newspaper's headquarters, which was retained by Manchester and would be leased by the newspaper

On May 26, 2015, the newspaper announced it would lay off 178 employees, representing about thirty percent of the total staff, as it consolidated its printing operations with the Times in Los Angeles

Closure of San Diego printing facilities

On June 13, 2015, at 10:02 pm PDT the final run of The San Diego Union Tribune was printed at the San Diego headquarters in Mission Valley began It was to print the Sunday edition newspaper for June 14, 2015 The following Monday's newspaper would be printed at the Los Angeles Times location The dismantling of the printing presses in Mission Valley began in mid-September 2015

Gannett offer and name change

In 2016 rival newspaper publisher Gannett Company offered to buy the Tribune Publishing Company The offer was rejected by management, spurring some shareholder dissatisfaction and a shareholder lawsuit Meanwhile, the Tribune Publishing Company renamed itself Tronc Inc Tronc is an acronym for Tribune online content Effective June 20, the renamed company will trade on the NASDAQ exchange under the symbol TRNC


The newspaper was originally located in Old Town San Diego, and was moved to downtown San Diego in 1871 In 1973, it moved to a custom-built, brick and stone office and printing plant complex in Mission Valley

The newspaper moved back downtown in May 2016, to offices on the 9th through 12th floor of a tower at 600 B Street The Union-Tribune is to be the named tenant of the building, replacing Bridgepoint Education and, before that, Comerica


Pulitzer Prizes

  • 1979, Breaking News Reporting: San Diego Evening Tribune for its coverage of the PSA Flight 182 jetliner collision with a small plane over North Park
  • 1987, Editorial Writing: San Diego Evening Tribune editorial writer Jonathan Freedman for his editorials urging passage of the first major immigration reform act in 34 years
  • 2006, National Reporting: The San Diego Union-Tribune and Copley News Service with notable work by Marcus Stern and Jerry Kammer, for their disclosure of bribe-taking that sent former Rep Randy "Duke" Cunningham to prison "in disgrace" They also received the George Polk Award for these stories
  • 2009, Editorial Cartooning: Steve Breen "for his agile use of a classic style to produce wide ranging cartoons that engage readers with power, clarity and humor"


Copleys and Platinum Equity

Under the Copleys' ownership, the newspaper had a reliably conservative editorial position, endorsing almost exclusively Republicans for elective office, and sometimes refusing to interview or cover Democratic candidates

Under Platinum Equity, the newspaper's editorial position "skewed closer to the middle" and showcased multiple viewpoints

Manchester and Lynch

When Manchester and business partner John Lynch took ownership in 2011, they were open about their desire to use the newspaper to "promote their agenda of downtown development and politically conservative causes", with Lynch stating on KPBS radio that he and Manchester "wanted to be cheerleaders for all that is good in San Diego" Lynch expanded on this position in 2012, saying "We make no apologies We are doing what a newspaper ought to do, which is to take positions We are very consistent—pro-conservative, pro-business, pro-military—and we are trying to make a newspaper that gets people excited about this city and its future"

This open promotion of certain viewpoints resulted in criticism from journalism professors and other newspaper editors, who worried that negative news about topics such as the military and business might not be covered Dean Nelson, director of the journalism program at Point Loma Nazarene University, argued, "Now if you're saying we're going to be the cheerleaders of the military, why would you report on this guy that's taking bribes Where's the cheerleading there" a reference to the Union-Tribune's Pulitzer Prize winning coverage of the Duke Cunningham bribery scandal A New York Times writer added, "There is a growing worry that the falling value and failing business models of many American newspapers could lead to a situation where moneyed interests buy papers and use them to prosecute a political and commercial agenda That future appears to have arrived in San Diego"

Lynch said, "We totally respect the journalistic integrity of our paper and there is a clear line of demarcation between our editorials and our news Our editor, Jeff Light, calls the shots" However, in November 2011 Lynch told the sports editor that the sports pages should advocate for a new football stadium; when a longtime sportswriter wrote skeptically about the idea, he was fired

Downtown redevelopment

In January 2012, two months after Manchester bought the U-T, the newspaper featured a front-page proposal for downtown redevelopment, to include a downtown football stadium and an expansion of the San Diego Convention Center Both properties are adjacent to hotels that Manchester owns

In September 2012, Investigative Newsource reporter Brooke Williams obtained articles that claimed Lynch "threatened" Port Commissioner Scott Peters, who was running for Congress, "with a newspaper campaign to dismantle the Unified Port of San Diego" In e-mails obtained by Williams, Lynch was quoted as indicating that if the Dole Food Company obtained a long-term contract, that the Port's independence governance would be questioned in editorial coverage Williams said the effort showed "the extent to which the newspaper's new owners will go to push their vision for a football stadium on the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal",

Endorsements and polling

During the 2012 mayoral election the owners of the U-T donated to Republican City Council Member Carl DeMaio's campaign, and the newspaper ran several prominent editorials favoring DeMaio Those endorsements were wrapped around the front section of the newspaper on a separate page, "as though they were even more important" than the front page

In October 2012, a poll was taken by the U-T asking respondents to choose between DeMaio and Democratic Congressman Bob Filner in the mayoral election to be held in November A rival news outlet noted that "Employees of a newspaper, television / radio station, marketing / public opinion research company or the city of San Diego—or who live with someone employed in one of those fields" were excluded from the poll results, which showed the Republican leading the Democrat, 46 percent to 36 percent Reporter Kelly Davis of SDCityBeatcom wrote: "Common sense dictates that those votes would swing in Filner's favor due to DeMaio's long-running feud with city-employee unions" But U-T assignment editor Michael Smolens replied that "city employees were excluded to avoid political entanglements" in other parts of the ballot as well as in the mayor's race Despite the newspaper's efforts, DeMaio lost to Filner

Lynch handed day-to-day operations off to another executive in February 2014, and Editor Jeff Light became company president in January 2015 In 2016, Light was named publisher


  • William Jeff Gatewood founded the newspaper, which first published October 10, 1868 He sold his interest to Charles P Taggart in May 1869
  • Edward "Ned" Wilkerson Bushyhead, 1868–1873 with various partners, beginning with Taggart Bushyhead 1832–1907 was a miner, publisher and lawman who was born in Tennessee Part Cherokee, he was the son of a Baptist preacher, whom he accompanied from Georgia to Indian Territory on the Trail of Tears at the age of seven Having moved to San Diego, he became the "silent" publisher of the San Diego Union In 1873, he sold the newspaper In 1882, he was elected sheriff of San Diego County
  • Douglas Gunn, 1871–1886 Gunn August 31, 1841 – November 26, 1891 was a scholar, publisher, pioneer and Republican politician from California
  • John D Spreckels, 1890–1926 The son of German-American industrialist Claus Spreckels, he founded a transportation and real estate empire in San Diego
  • Col Ira C Copley, 1928–1947
  • James S Copley, 1947–1973 He was a journalist and newspaper publisher He published the San Diego Union, San Diego Union-Tribune and San Diego Evening Tribune from 1947 until his death in 1973
  • Helen K Copley, 1973–2001
  • David C Copley, 2001–2009
  • Edward R Moss, May 2009 – December 2011
  • Doug F "Papa Doug" Manchester, 2011–2015
  • Austin Beutner, May–September 2015
  • Timothy E Ryan, September 2015-March 2016
  • Jeff Light, March 2016-

Notable people

  • Steve Breen, cartoonist
  • Phil Collier, sportswriter
  • Thomas Gardiner, manager of the San Diego Union in 1891
  • CH Garrigues, Sun reporter
  • Jerry Magee, sportswriter 1956–2008
  • Jack Murphy, sportswriter 1951–1980
  • Cathy Scott, correspondent, The San Diego Union-Tribune 1990–1993
  • Tim Sullivan, sports columnist 2002–2012
  • Gerald Warren, reporter and editor, 1956–1968, 1975–1995; also White House Press Secretary

See also

  • Journalism portal
  • San Diego County portal
  • List of assets owned by Tribune Company
  • List of newspapers in California
  • Media in San Diego


  1. ^ "Top 25 US Newspapers for March 2013" Alliance for Audited Media Retrieved June 1, 2014 
  2. ^ a b Beutner, Austin March 15, 2015 "LA Times, Union-Tribune Combine Forces" The San Diego Union-Tribune 
  3. ^ Engstrand, Iris 2005 San Diego: California's Cornerstone Sunbelt Publications pp 80–81 ISBN 978-0-932653-72-7 
  4. ^ "Guide to the San Diego Union-Tribune Photograph Collection" Online Archive of California 
  5. ^ "San Diego 120 Top Influential Pioneers" The Daily Transcript Retrieved August 3, 2014 
  6. ^ "Part Five: Chapter III: Later Journalism and Literature" San Diego History Center 
  7. ^ "The Copley Legacy" The San Diego Union-Tribune May 5, 2009 
  8. ^ Kupper, Thomas March 18, 2009 "Union-Tribune Sold to Platinum Equity" The San Diego Union-Tribune 
  9. ^ Apple, Charles August 17, 2010 "San Diego Union-Tribune Launches Redesign" Applecopydeskorg Retrieved October 31, 2010 
  10. ^ Vore, Adrian May 26, 2015 "What's in a Nameplate A Lot, Actually" The San Diego Union-Tribune Retrieved May 27, 2015 
  11. ^ "San Diego Union-Tribune Sold to Hotelier for More Than $100 Million" The New York Times November 17, 2011 
  12. ^ "Manchester Grand Resorts" Manchester Financial Group Retrieved December 16, 2013 
  13. ^ "To Our Readers" UTSanDiegocom January 3, 2012 
  14. ^ Walters, Dan January 3, 2012 "San Diego Union-Tribune Becomes 'U-T San Diego'" The Sacramento Bee 
  15. ^ Romenesko, Jim January 3, 2012 "San Diego Union-Tribune Becomes U-T San Diego" JimRomaneskocom 
  16. ^ "U-T San Diego to Buy North County Times, Californian" North County Times September 11, 2012 
  17. ^ "U-T Combines with North County Times" KNSD-TV 
  18. ^ "A New Frontier for News" U-T San Diego February 28, 2013 Retrieved May 8, 2015 
  19. ^ Malone, Michael February 20, 2014 "U-T TV Goes Dark" Broadcasting & Cable Retrieved February 20, 2014 
  20. ^ Horn, Jonathan November 1, 2013 "U-T Buys 8 Local Community Newspapers" U-T San Diego 
  21. ^ "$85M Deal to Combine U-T, LA Times" U-T San Diego May 7, 2015 Retrieved May 8, 2015 
  22. ^ "LA Times Parent to Buy San Diego Paper, Expanding Reach in Southern California" Los Angeles Times Retrieved May 8, 2015 
  23. ^ Pfeifer, Stuart May 27, 2015 "San Diego Union-Tribune Lays Off 178, Mostly in Printing, Delivery" Los Angeles Times Retrieved May 27, 2015 
  24. ^ http://wwwsandiegouniontribunecom/news/2015/jun/15/ut-presses-cease-printing/
  25. ^ Koren, James Rufus June 2, 2016 "Tribune Publishing renames itself Tronc as its dispute with Gannett continues" Los Angeles Times Retrieved 5 June 2016 
  26. ^ Showley, Roger May 16, 2016 "U-T: Back downtown" The San Diego Union-Tribune San Diego, CA Retrieved June 4, 2016 
  27. ^ "1979 Winners" The Pulitzer Prizes Retrieved January 14, 2014 
  28. ^ "1987 Winners and Finalists" The Pulitzer Prizes Retrieved January 14, 2014 
  29. ^ McDonald, Jeff April 18, 2006 "U-T, Copley News Win Pulitzer Prize" The San Diego Union-Tribune 
  30. ^ "George Polk Awards for Journalism press release" Long Island University Retrieved November 15, 2006 
  31. ^ Raftery, Miriam November 20, 2011 "Media Watchdog: Union Tribune Sale Raises Media Ethics Concerns" East County Magazine Retrieved June 9, 2013 
  32. ^ Adams, Becket October 22, 2012 "San Diego Media Baron Expands Business to Promote Conservatism" The Blaze 
  33. ^ Sharma, Anita November 17, 2011 "Developer Doug Manchester Buys Union-Tribune" KPBS-FM 
  34. ^ a b c Carr, David June 10, 2012 "Newspaper as Business Pulpit" The New York Times Retrieved June 8, 2013 
  35. ^ Anderson, Erik; Burke, Megan; Cavanaugh, Maureen; Pico, Peggy September 11, 2012 "It's Official: U-T San Diego Is Buying North County Times" KPBS-TV City News Service 
  36. ^ Davis, Rob September 11, 2012 "Manchester Consolidates Power with Second Newspaper Buy" Voice of San Diego 
  37. ^ "Think Big: New Vision Needed for Downtown Waterfront" San Diego Union-Tribune Editorial January 22, 2012 Retrieved June 9, 2013 
  38. ^ "Papa Doug Manchester" dougmanchestercom Retrieved June 9, 2013 
  39. ^ "Port Commissioner: 'The UT Is Coming After Us,'" Investigative Newsource September 27, 2012 
  40. ^ Lewis, Scott October 22, 2012 "The Head-Spinning Polls in the Mayor's Race" Voice of San Diego 
  41. ^ Lewis, Scott September 11, 2012 "The Two Faces of Papa Doug" Voice of San Diego Retrieved October 13, 2013 
  42. ^ Davis, Kelly October 25, 2012 "Why Were City Employees Excluded from the U-T Mayoral Poll" San Diego CityBeat 
  43. ^ Poll results
  44. ^ Lewis, Scott February 7, 2014 "U-T San Diego CEO John Lynch Hands Reins to President Mike Hodges" Voice of San Diego 
  45. ^ Horn, Jonathan January 12, 2015 "Light Named U-T President & COO" U-T San Diego 
  46. ^ http://wwwsandiegouniontribunecom/news/2016/mar/18/light-union-tribune-publisher-editor/
  47. ^ San Diego and Imperial Counties California: A Record of Settlement, Organization, Progress and Achievement Page 201 SJ Clarke Publishing Co 1913 Retrieved September 8, 2015 
  48. ^ Davis, Rob October 30, 2009 "Doing More With Moss" Voice of San Diego Retrieved November 8, 2009 
  49. ^ "Union-Tribune Returns to Local Hands" The San Diego Union-Tribune December 6, 2011 Retrieved January 5, 2012 
  50. ^ "San Diego Developer Purchases City's Newspaper" Bloomberg Businessweek Associated Press December 6, 2011 Retrieved January 5, 2012 
  51. ^ Goffard, Christopher; Pfeifer, Stuart September 9, 2015 "Publisher Austin Beutner Is Fired After a Yearlong Drive to Reshape The Times" Los Angeles Times Retrieved January 22, 2016 

External links

  • Official website
  • Early newspaper history from History of San Diego by William E Smythe 1907–1909

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