'The Augusta Chronicle' names new president

Friday, Oct. 14, 2011 4:26 PM
Last updated 4:33 PM
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Lt. Gen. Dana T. Atkins has been named president of The Augusta Chronicle, the paper’s publisher announced Friday.

Lt. Gen. Dana T. Atkins
Lt. Gen. Dana T. Atkins

Atkins will assume his new duties Jan. 3, after his retirement as commander of Alaskan Command, Alaska NORAD Region, Joint Task Force Alaska, and 11th Air Force at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, Alaska.

“We are honored to have a man of such accomplishment, reputation and skill to become president of the Chronicle,” said William S. Morris III, the chairman and CEO of Morris Communications and publisher of The Chronicle. “He will bring to our newspaper team the superior leadership and management abilities that have distinguished his military career, and we are happy to welcome him and his family to our community.”

Atkins will replace Don Bailey, who resigned in July after holding the post for seven years.

Born in Portland, Ore., Atkins, 57, is a command pilot with more than 4,000 hours in fighter aircraft. He served as vice commander, 7th Air Force and U.S. Air Forces Korea, and was special assistant to the Supreme Allied Commander Europe during the air war over Serbia. During his career, he has flown as a demonstration pilot for both the European A-10 demonstration team and the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds.

“Dana will bring incredible experience and talents to our team,” said Will Morris, the president of Morris Publishing Group, which owns the Chronicle. “He will make a major contribution to our digital transformation efforts.”

In his capacity as commander Alaskan Command, Atkins has been serving as the senior military officer responsible for the integration of all military activities in the Alaskan theater of operations, governing the activities of more than 21,000 active-duty, Guard and Reserve members from all service branches. He also commands 11th Air Force and oversees the training and readiness of three wings and multiple Air Force installations located throughout the state.

As commander of the Alaskan North American Aerospace Defense Command Region, Atkins directs air operations within Alaska. He is also the commander of Joint Task Force Alaska and is responsible for the planning and execution of all Homeland Defense operations within the theater, including security and civil support actions.

“My wife, Laura, and I are very much looking forward to this transition to contribute to Morris Communications and the outstanding team at The Augusta Chronicle,” Atkins said. “I recognize there are challenges on the horizon, and I’m hopeful I will bring the vision and energy to navigate The Chronicle to the forefront of the industry through innovation, creativity, commitment and professional competence.”

The general earned his bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of Portland and graduated with distinction from the Squadron Officer School at Maxwell Air Force Base in Alabama. He earned master’s degrees in aeronautical science from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Florida and in national security strategy at the National War College, Fort Lesley J. McNair, Washington, D.C.

He and his wife have two children – a son, Geoffrey Atkins, deployed with the U.S. Air Force in Iraq, and daughter, Kristen McGuire, a teacher in Spokane, Wash.

“I am very excited about the upcoming move to Augusta to join the Morris Communications team of professionals,” Atkins said. “I’ve had the privilege of working and living in the South in the past and fondly remember the Southern hospitality that made every day a joyous and memorable experience.”

Derek May, the executive vice president of Morris Publishing Group, said, “I am thrilled to have Dana on our team. The Augusta Chronicle has been the No. 1 local source for news and information for more than 225 years, and we plan to continue that dominance in an increasingly digital world. Dana’s leadership will be invaluable as we make this transition.”

Comments (20) Add comment
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storiesihaveread
358
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storiesihaveread 10/14/11 - 04:32 pm
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I am impressed!!

I am impressed!!

rmwhitley
5547
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rmwhitley 10/14/11 - 05:08 pm
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Atten Hut!
Unpublished

Atten Hut!

willie7
955
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willie7 10/14/11 - 05:26 pm
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I am impressed also. He has
Unpublished

I am impressed also. He has great career experience to move the Chronicle forward in the digital age of newspapers.

Jake
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Jake 10/14/11 - 09:58 pm
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Welcome to the "Der Sturmer".

Welcome to the "Der Sturmer". I am sure Julius Streicher is pleased to have you on board. I am also sure you will find this paper to be well rounded and able to express the views of all of it's constituents.

spotted_assassin
63
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spotted_assassin 10/14/11 - 10:15 pm
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ummmmmm, where's his MEDIA

ummmmmm, where's his MEDIA experience? Just cause you're a great doctor, doesn't mean you can design a building! Who's pulling his strings?

wtinney
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wtinney 10/14/11 - 10:34 pm
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Welcome aboard, President

Welcome aboard, President Atkins! You've joined a great team at the Augusta Chronicle. It should be the easiest assignment you've ever had because The Augusta Chronicle is already great! So, in other words, just don't screw it up! Take care and good luck!

Cynical old woman
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Cynical old woman 10/14/11 - 11:28 pm
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Yea, spotted, I wondered the

Yea, spotted, I wondered the same thing.

Riverman1
84078
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Riverman1 10/14/11 - 11:35 pm
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Gen. Atkins, get enrolled in

Gen. Atkins, get enrolled in primary care at Eisenhower and realize the power of Riverman early on. Yep, I understand why you came here...Eisenhower, good climate, great cost of living and fantastic on post golf course... you found it. If you start a blog, realize the last guy only lasted a week after he tried it.

Riverman1
84078
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Riverman1 10/14/11 - 11:41 pm
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LTG Atkins, the more I think

LTG Atkins, the more I think about it, the clearer it becomes to me you should spend some time reading my previous posts. G-2 it and all that. Seriously.

seenitB4
87304
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seenitB4 10/15/11 - 07:09 am
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Lt General & all

Lt General & all that---wow--- another one to breakin huh riverman...let's go easy on this one...:)

bjphysics
36
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bjphysics 10/15/11 - 08:00 am
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Lieutenant general (O-9),

Lieutenant general (O-9), probably joined right after college graduation (call it 22-23), so he will have 35-36 years of service at retirement. Annual retirement pay in 2012 about $156K; that’s like a doctor’s salary for the rest of his life, at 57 that could be another 25 years.

That kind of financial independence gives General Atkins wide latitude to call em as he sees em. Sounds like he has significant administrative skills and if someone gives him any flak he’ll fire up his A-10 and hit you with a Thunderbolt.

fd1962
26
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fd1962 10/15/11 - 09:44 am
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Yes, indeed, the combination
Unpublished

Yes, indeed, the combination of General Atkins and shrinking of the newsprint certainly guarantees a rosy future in the mechanics of journalism.

Ral Zarek
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Ral Zarek 10/15/11 - 09:42 am
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And what, exactly, are Mr.

And what, exactly, are Mr. Atkins's journalistic credentials?

None?

Oh.

fd1962
26
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fd1962 10/15/11 - 09:57 am
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Why, Ral, have any ever been
Unpublished

Why, Ral, have any ever been required to operate the Chronicle?

Riverman1
84078
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Riverman1 10/15/11 - 10:12 am
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SeenIt, even my outspoken

SeenIt, even my outspoken self drew the line at messing with O-9s when I was in the Army. I limited my self to one stars and below, heh. Heck, an O-9 has so much power they could probably have a secret detachment eliminate you for the good of the country or something.

Riverman1
84078
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Riverman1 10/15/11 - 10:18 am
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Here's how I see it. Augusta

Here's how I see it. Augusta is a well known and appreciated area for military retirees for many reasons. Hospital, other military facilities, climate, cost of living and many recreational opportunities. Atkins has plenty money, but needs a profession in retirement that gives him status, challenges and so on. This is a perfect match. He also gives the Chronicle increased....what's the word.....respectability? importance? Something like that.

harley_52
23405
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harley_52 10/15/11 - 02:23 pm
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Riverman said "He also gives

Riverman said "He also gives the Chronicle increased....what's the word.....respectability? importance? Something like that."

I agree.

But will he become ensnared by the evil "cabal?"

Heh, heh, heh......

harley_52
23405
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harley_52 10/15/11 - 02:26 pm
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Riverman said "Gen. Atkins,

Riverman said "Gen. Atkins, get enrolled in primary care at Eisenhower and realize the power of Riverman early on."

How does one recognize "the power of Riverman," if enrolled in EAMC Primary Care, when one sees it?

I'm sure I've been in the same area, if not the same room at some point in the past thirty years.

Riverman1
84078
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Riverman1 10/15/11 - 07:36 pm
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Harley, ha, I was just

Harley, ha, I was just joking. I have nothing to do with primary care at Eisenhower. I was simply telling Atkins to do what us other military retirees do. You know?

AndrewLafa
27
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AndrewLafa 10/16/11 - 12:06 pm
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I'm confused. Is the Augusta

I'm confused. Is the Augusta Chronicle a military establishment or a newspaper?

Oh wait...I think I know the answer to that one.

Jokes aside, I seem to recall several OPEDs when Obama was running for president that stated that Obama couldn't be president because he was lacking experience. Yet the higher ups at the AC find a guy with no journalism experience and make him president?

Things that make you go HMMMMM...........

Riverman1
84078
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Riverman1 10/17/11 - 08:38 am
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Burn, let me clear up a

Burn, let me clear up a misconception. He is one out of a million...literally. In addition. if you serve 20 years you receive 50% of your BASE pay. Much of military pay is in extra pay such as a housing allowance and rations (food) allowance. You don't get 50% of that. Fact is a teacher makes far more in retirement than the average military retiree.

burninater
9583
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burninater 10/17/11 - 09:30 am
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Nothing in my post came

Nothing in my post came remotely close to violating the usage policy, and it has been pulled?

Nothing like some good old fashioned censorship for its own sake, huh?

This is the "freedom" we've been hearing so much about lately? Seems a bit more like fascism, in the purest sense of the world.

What a joke.

Little Lamb
46028
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Little Lamb 10/17/11 - 09:55 am
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I think this is the policy

I think this is the policy that was violated, Burninater (copied & pasted from the Chronicle web site):

Please stay on topic.

If I recall your post correctly, you were speculating on what Atkins military pension might be. That's certainly not on the topic of this news story.

Sean Moores
385
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Sean Moores 10/17/11 - 10:06 am
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Burninator, Check your email.

Burninator, Check your email. I explained why that post was removed. It was off topic for this story. I also told you that you could post it on R&R. You can give almost any opinion on our site as long as you follow the rules.

burninater
9583
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burninater 10/17/11 - 11:20 am
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Thank you for the explanation

Thank you for the explanation Sean. LL, it was bj's post that speculated on the pension. You can see that post is intact and apparently on-topic. My post pointed out that this on-topic pension was exactly the type of tax-payer entitlement that the Tea Party rails against. This observation was what was considered off-topic. Granted, I've seen anti-entitlement posts stand on pretty much any article topic the AC can throw on their site. I guess this specific entitlement recipient of a tax-payer funded retirement is a little different.

That's why God gave us two sides of a mouth I guess, so we can speak out of both of them.

justthefacts
21931
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justthefacts 10/17/11 - 11:38 am
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Burn, I don't believe most

Burn, I don't believe most "tea party" types begrudge teachers receiving a pension.

Good Wrench
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Good Wrench 12/07/11 - 05:25 pm
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Many of you have expressed

Many of you have expressed concern over a perceived lack of Lt Gen Atkins' journalism experience. I can assure you, base upon my own 30 years of active duty military experience, that one does not rise to that level of responsibility without successfully surviving countless 'media ambushes' live press interviews, congressional testimonies and media statements regarding very sensitive military issues. In addition, he has created, edited or reviewed a seemingly infinite number of Air Force policy documents, high level briefings, classified reports, personnel evaluations, promotion recommendations, awards, decorations, ad infinitum. Having known him for the past 20+ years, I can assure you he has a very gifted command of the written word but then he wasn't hired to be a reporter. He was hired for his leadership, vision, ingenuity and above all; integrity. He will humbly not claim to know it all but will rely heavily on those who are highly experienced in public sector journalism to make sure the "i"s are dotted and the "T"s are crossed. Granted, his journalism experience is not intuitively obvious but, give him a chance and watch the AC continue to move in a positive direction. He is a winner and the AC is fortunate to have him.

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