Magazine June 24, 2019, Issue

Newspaperman

Mike Brown in front of the office (Jay Nordlinger)
The exemplary Mike Brown of the Rockdale Reporter

Rockdale, Texas

Local papers are dying, fast. But the Rockdale Reporter is hanging on. Its editor, Mike Brown, is one of my favorite journalists in America. I have known him for years. As I see it, he exemplifies what a newspaperman ought to be.

Rockdale is in Central Texas, about 160 miles south of Dallas. The town used to be 60 miles from Austin, says Mike, but Austin has spread out so much, the distance is now 48.

(By the way, I have to refer to the editor as “Mike,” rather than “Brown.” It would be awkward to last-name him. If you knew

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