Letter: Bidding Farewell to One Terrific and Talented Editor (Fall 2010 Trust Magazine)

11/19/2010 - The spring 2010 issue of Trust marked the retirement of the magazine’s founding editor, Marshall Ledger. The occasion prompted this letter to Pew president and CEO Rebecca W. Rimel, which appears here with permission of the writer.

Dear Ms. Rimel,

I have been reading Pew’s Trust magazine since 2003, shortly after returning to my career as a development professional after a six-year hiatus.

How times had changed during my absence! I no longer recognized the industry. Benchmarks, evaluation, impact and measurement were the new buzz words in this post-Enron era of responsibility, accountability and transparency, and no one does a better job of “showing and telling us” how to accomplish those ideals than The Pew Charitable Trusts.

My transition back into the philanthropic community has been inspired by the remarkable, timely and proactive work of Pew and the magic of Trust’s founding editor, Marshall Ledger, in the telling of the Trusts’ stories. Over the years, I have found the magazine to be the quintessential report on what matters in the Philadelphia community, in the country and around the world. Ledger and his team of top-notch professionals put out a first-class magazine that combines scrupulous reporting with a simple creative design, stunning photography and darn good storytelling— all the elements that make for riveting, relevant and rewarding reading.

A few years ago, I was compelled to write to Mr. Ledger after reading a thoroughly satisfying issue of Trust to congratulate him on an exceptionally fine edition. I was most surprised when I received a call from Mr. Ledger thanking me for taking the time to write such a thoughtful letter. I knew then that he was a “reader’s editor.” He asked if he could publish the letter (verbatim) in the next issue of the Trust. I was touched. Of course I agreed. After all, who doesn’t like seeing her name in print?

And so, as the season turns, I bid farewell to one terrific and talented editor and to a man who brought integrity and quiet dignity to his job and to every issue of Trust during his tenure. I wish Mr. Ledger a happy and contented retirement and thank him for contributing to the vast pool of worthy publications vying for my attention—he has, as you suggested, given me good reason to read every issue of Trust cover to cover. I see no reason to stop going forward.

Patricia A. Mecca
Riverton, New Jersey

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