Phillips named publisher, Stallcop editor at Bremerton Sun

Tue, February 17, 1998 by Rich Boehne

BREMERTON, Wash. – Mike Phillips, editor of The Sun since 1989, has been named the newspaper's publisher.He will replace Elizabeth Brenner, who is resigning to accept the position of publisher of The News-Tribune in Tacoma, Wash.Sun Managing Editor Brian Stallcop will succeed Phillips as editor. Both appointments are effective Jan. 1, 1998."Betsy Brenner has done a wonderful job in Bremerton and will be missed," said Alan Horton, senior vice president/newspapers for The E. W. Scripps Company, owner of The Sun. "Fortunately, she leaves a deep and talented team in Bremerton. Mike Phillips is a nationally respected editor and, recently, has been working on a major national readership project for the Newspaper Association of America. He was chosen for that assignment because of the way he has improved The Sun, which resulted in growing circulation and readership."Mike understands the community, the staff and the publisher's role. His managing editor, Brian Stallcop, deserves the opportunity to be editor. This month he was named one of the top 20 newspaper executives under 40 years old in the entire country. He has roots in Bremerton and he has ink in his veins. The Sun will not miss a step on its march toward satisfying its readers' and advertisers' needs."Phillips, 51, came to The Sun from an editorship in Hollywood, Fla. He previously had been managing editor of The Kentucky Post in Covington, Ky.; deputy metro editor of The Cincinnati Post, and a reporter and editor at several newspapers in Texas. He started his newspaper career in 1967 as a copy editor at the Tribune-Herald in Waco, Texas, while still a student at Baylor University.As Sun editor, he oversaw the newspaper's redesign and the launch of a Sunday edition in 1991, creation of numerous new sections and special-topic pages and a sustained increase in local news coverage. During his tenure, The Sun and its staff have been honored regionally and nationally for reporting, design, graphics and photography. Phillips is a founding director and the president-elect of Leadership Kitsapand is a member of the Silverdale Rotary Club. He lives in the Olympic View community with his wife, Nancye, a veteran reporter who now volunteers extensively for Hospice of Kitsap County.Stallcop, 34, came to The Sun as managing editor from The Virginian-Pilot in Norfolk. "People in the newspaper business spotted Brian as a real comer some years ago," Phillips said. "I was lucky to recruit him away from the management fast track of a very fine newspaper. It helped that this is home for Brian. His great-grandparents settled in Brownsville in 1941 and his grandparents have been here since the early 1980s. Brian and his wife, Shawna, have jumped into the community as if they'd been here all their lives."I can take over my expanded role and focus on learning the parts of it that are new to me without worrying for a moment about the news operation. It is in outstanding hands," Phillips said.Stallcop has a B.A. in Latin American Studies and an M.A. in Journalism from the University of Missouri. He worked as a page designer for The Commercial Appeal in Memphis, Tenn.; picture editor at The Indianapolis News, and picture editor, designer, front-page editor, redesign coordinator, metro editor, news editor and design team leader for The Virginian-Pilot before joining The Sun. This month's Presstime magazine, a newspaper trade publication, features Stallcop as one of 20 industry stars under the age of 40.Stallcop is a graduate of Leadership Kitsap and a member of the Bremerton Rotary Club. He and his wife live in McCormick Woods. She is a registered nurse and is studying to be a nurse practitioner.Brenner, 43, was The Sun's first publisher – a position that oversees a newspaper's entire operation. The Sun previously had been operated by an editor supervising the newsroom and a general manager supervising business functions.In July 1996 Brenner came to The Sun to head up a readership building strategy that has made it one of the nation's fastest-growing newspapers. Before joining The Sun, she was senior vice president/sales and marketing for Denver's Rocky Mountain News, also a Scripps newspaper."Betsy hit The Sun like a wind storm," Phillips said, "and hollered over hershoulder for the rest of us to keep up. We've managed to do it, and we've all grown in the process. I know everyone at The Sun is sorry that Betsy isleaving, but we're proud of her – and proud of what we've accomplished in our short time together."The E.W. Scripps Company operates 20 daily newspapers; nine network-affiliated television stations; two TV networks, Home & Garden Television and the Food Network; two TV programmers, Cinetel Productions and Scripps Howard Productions; and United Media, a worldwide syndicator and licensor of news features and comics.