Naples Daily News editor announces retirement
Fri, June 07, 2013 by Carolyn Micheli
Phil Lewis, executive editor of the Naples Daily News in Naples, Fla., and respected journalist in The E.W. Scripps Company, is retiring after 35 years in the newsroom. His last day is July 1.
His career with Scripps included more than 15 years as editor at the Daily News, southwest Florida’s most decorated newsroom.
“During Phil’s tenure, he was a leader during many transformations in our newsroom and across the industry,” said Dave Neill, regional publisher for the Naples Daily News. “He was here when we started our first Sunday paper and for our entrance into the digital world. His work ensured journalistic integrity across our many platforms. Phil is a respected leader in the community, and that position has helped the Daily News to become an even greater contributor to the vibrancy of the Naples community.”
His career paralleled much of the growth of both Collier County, Florida, and the Daily News. Lewis, 60, joined the Daily News as a reporter in 1978. Just three years later the newspaper promoted him to city editor. In 1989 he advanced again to managing editor of the newspaper. Under his leadership as editor since 1997, the Daily News won scores of national, regional and state awards and developed a national reputation for quality visual journalism.
“Journalism was my first love and it has been an honor to serve the Southwest Florida community along with my Daily News colleagues,” Lewis said. “I consider myself extremely lucky. My 35 years with the newspaper allowed me to work side-by-side with hundreds of extraordinary people who produced extraordinary journalism on the local, state and national level.”
In 1990, the American Society of News Editors recognized the Naples Daily News as one of 10 newspapers cited for excellence in the under 50,000-circulation category.
In 1999, Daily News reporter Gina Edwards received the top Investigative Reporters and Editors award for newspapers in the under 100,000-circulation group for coverage of the “Stadium Naples” corruption probe. Her work resulted in the arrest of three Collier County elected officials and the passage of local government ethics laws.
In 2003, the Daily News received the Scripps Howard National Journalism Award for environmental reporting with “Gulf in Peril,” a 15-part series documenting the declining health of the Gulf of Mexico.
In 2011, the Pulitzer board named Daily News photojournalist Greg Kahn a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in feature photography – the first Daily News staff member recognized by the board.
Lewis began his journalism career in Washington Court House, Ohio, as sports editor and city editor of the Record-Herald. He is a 1974 graduate of the University of Missouri.
Scripps (www.scripps.com) is a leading media enterprise driven to develop and expand its digital strategies while embracing its rich history in delivering quality journalism through television stations, newspapers and the Scripps Howard News Service. Creative, talented and energetic employees are leading the way at 19 television stations and in 13 newspaper markets. The Scripps digital group is growing and gaining momentum with new product offerings, enhancements, and technology that gives customers more options than ever before to find the information and entertainment they crave.