Taking the long view

By EDITORIAL  |  May 9, 2011


Boston is diminished by the recent death of William Osgood Taylor II, the longtime publisher of the Boston Globe, who succumbed to cancer after a two-year struggle. Despite his double-barreled name, Taylor was universally known as Bill.

Bill was old-school in the sense that his family had owned a substantial share of the Globe for more than 100 years. Bill combined dedication to the bottom line with an unswerving commitment to editorial independence and high journalistic standards. In Bill's world, integrity and profitability went hand in hand, rather like apple pie and ice cream.

When competing visions among the far-flung Taylor family and the Globe's other owner, the Kidder Trust, could not be easily reconciled, Bill brokered a sale to the New York Times Company for $1.1 billion. Despite all manner of second guessing, it was probably the best thing to do at the time, and perhaps the only thing.

In a city renowned for ancestor worship, Bill's memory is guaranteed to live on.

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