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Head of Scripps Howard Foundation announces his retirement plans

Mike Philipps provided new focus and reenergized spirit for Foundation after distinguished journalism careerTwitter post: Scripps Howard Foundation CEO Mike Philipps announces his plans to retire in 2...

May 27, 2014 --

CINCINNATI, May 27, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --After a 40-year career of journalistic excellence and philanthropic leadership, Mike Philipps plans to retire from his job as president and CEO of the Scripps Howard Foundation.

Scripps Howard Foundation President and CEO Mike Philipps

Philipps, 67, informed the foundation trustees at their regular meeting that he will remain in his position for up to another year, during which time the foundation, the philanthropic arm of The E.W. Scripps Company (NYSE: SSP), will search for his successor.

Philipps started with the foundation in February 2008, at a time when financial crisis gripped the nation's economy, significantly affecting the media industry, universities and the foundations that support both of them. He guided the foundation to stability by focusing support on excellence in journalism, building healthy communities and improving quality of life through education, social services, arts and civic affairs.

"Mike is tireless in his efforts to position the foundation as a champion of journalism and a benefactor to countless programs that touch thousands of lives in meaningful ways," said Robin Davis, lead trustee of the foundation and vice president of strategic planning and development for The E.W. Scripps Company. "He is very modest about his contributions to the foundation, to all of the communities in which Scripps does business, and to the universities that we support, but the foundation is more focused and better prepared for the future thanks to his efforts."

Philipps has directed the foundation's work toward encouraging its partner universities to adapt to the changing practices of the media industry.

"We refocused the foundation from an organization rooted exclusively in print and broadcast to one that is now strategically aligned with the multi-platform and digital priorities of Scripps," said Philipps. "One of my prime concerns was making sure university professors are teaching the next generation of journalists how to get the job done in the digital age."

Philipps also supported university-level journalism education for African-American and Hispanic students. The Scripps Howard Foundation has strong partnerships with Hampton University, Florida International University and Ohio University. The foundation provides paid internships for 80 students a year from many universities and offers faculty continuing-education programs.

The foundation also operates the highly respected Scripps Howard Awards, which annually recognize the best work of journalists from around the nation.

The foundation leadership job was a high-profile second career for Philipps after his 30 years with The Cincinnati Post/Kentucky Post. He served in numerous positions at the paper, including assistant city editor, news editor, metropolitan editor and assistant managing editor. He served as editor from 2001 until it published its final edition in December 2007.

When he retires, Philipps and his wife, Carole, who was also an editor at The Cincinnati Post, intend to travel extensively aboard their boat. Philipps also plans to stay active in journalism education by working with the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communications.

"I've always felt it's pretty easy to make a buck. What's hard is to make a difference," said Philipps. "I've been fortunate to spend almost 40 years in an industry that not only makes a buck but also makes a difference."

About Scripps
The E.W. Scripps Company ( serves audiences and businesses through a growing portfolio of television, print and digital media brands. After its acquisition of two Granite Broadcasting stations closes in June, Scripps will own 21 local television stations as well as daily newspapers in 13 markets across the United States. It also runs an expanding collection of local and national digital journalism and information businesses including online multi-source video news provider Newsy. Scripps also produces television programming, runs an award-winning investigative reporting newsroom in Washington, D.C., and serves as the long-time steward of one of the nation's largest, most successful and longest-running educational programs, Scripps National Spelling Bee. Founded in 1879, Scripps is focused on the stories of tomorrow.

About Scripps Howard Foundation
Dedicated to excellence in journalism, Scripps Howard Foundation is a leader in industry efforts in journalism education, scholarships, internships, literacy, minority recruitment/development and First Amendment causes. With a special commitment to the regions where Scripps does business, the Foundation helps build healthy communities and improve the quality of life through support of sound educational programs, strong families, vital social services, enriching arts and culture and inclusive civic affairs.

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