Ambrose promoted to chief editorial writer at Scripps Howard News Service

Tue, August 26, 1997 by Tim King

CINCINNATI, Ohio – Jay Ambrose, editor of Denver’s Rocky Mountain News since 1989, will become chief editorial writer for the Washington, D.C.-based Scripps Howard News Service in late summer. Ambrose, 51, accepted the promotion late Monday, said Alan M. Horton, Scripps’ senior vice president for newspapers. His successor in Denver has not yet been named. The Scripps Howard News Service is one of the nation’s largest supplemental news services. Its Pulitzer Prize-winning staff supplies editorial product to 360 clients, including some of the country’s largest newspapers. This year, Scripps Howard News Service reporters also have begun supplying Scripps television stations with live feeds of breaking news from the nation’s capital."Jay is more than a good editor," said Horton. "He is a gifted intellectual and one of the nation’s best editorial writers. He comes as close as anyone I know to having the ability to state powerfully and clearly how we as a people can find our way."When he joins the Washington staff later this summer, Ambrose will replace Claudia Winkler, a 12-year Scripps veteran who is leaving the company to become managing editor of The Standard, a weekly magazine of conservative news and opinion to be launched in September. William Kristol, chief of staff to former Vice President Dan Quayle, will publish The Standard, and Fred Barnes, former senior editor of the New Republic, will be its executive editor."As much as I love Colorado and the Rocky Mountain News," said Ambrose, "this is a chance for me to get back to the writing that I love, and to help fashion Scripps Howard’s analysis of crucial events taking place in America today. This prospect is exciting for me."Under Ambrose’s leadership, the Rocky Mountain News was a finalist for this year’s Pulitzer Prize in Spot News Reporting. During his tenure, the newspaper also won numerous national awards for education reporting and established a daily science and environment page, a rarity among American newspapers.He also held various editorial positions at the Rocky Mountain News from 1977 to 1983. He received the Walker Stone Award for outstanding editorial writing in 1981 from the Scripps Howard Foundation. Between his two stints at the Rocky Mountain News, Ambrose spent five years as managing editor and then editor of another Scripps newspaper, the El Paso Herald-Post. In El Paso, Ambrose helped launch a campaign against illiteracy and spearheaded a community forum designed to revive the community’s long-term economic, educational and social resources.Ambrose was founding chairman of the literacy committee of the American Society of Newspaper Editors and has served on the ASNE’s board of directors.A native of Kentucky, he was graduated from Transylvania College in Lexington, Ky., and spent a year as a professional journalism fellow at the University of Michigan as part of a National Endowment for the Humanities program. In 1987, he was graduated from the Harvard Business School Program for Management Development.Earlier in his newspaper career, he was a reporter, assistant city editor and editorial page editor at the Knickerbocker News in Albany, N.Y.Ambrose and his wife, Fran, have three sons and two granddaughters.The E.W. Scripps Company operates 18 daily newspapers, nine television stations, nine cable system clusters with 750,000 subscribers, two television production companies, a 24-hour cable channel, and a worldwide licensor and syndicator of news features and comics.