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End of an Era in Fredericksburg

Josiah P. Rowe III, a member of Washington and Lee University’s Class of 1948, is retiring from 60-plus years in the family business:  newspapers. On Oct. 14, the Fredericksburg (Va.) Free Lance-Star announced that he will retire at the end of the year and become publisher emeritus.

Joe and his brother Charles (W&L Class of 1945 and 1950 Law) began their journalism careers in the 1930s by delivering the Free Lance-Star. The pair became co-publishers in 1949, after their father, who owned the paper, died. Joe has been publisher and president since 1998. The company also owns a handful of radio stations under the name Star Radio Group, as well as the new Print Innovators.

With the opening of the printing business, Joe told his paper that “it’s the right time to turn the operations over to the next generation.” It’s still all in the family, however, as his son-in-law Nicholas J. Cadwallender is taking over as publisher.

Among many civic commitments, Joe also has served as the mayor of Fredericksburg, on the local school board and as president of the Virginia Press Association. With such a career under his belt, it’s no surprise that he is a member of the Virginia Communications Hall of Fame. Earlier this year the Virginia Associated Press Broadcasters presented him with the prestigious Robert Gallimore Distinguished Service Award.

You can read the Free Lance-Star’s article about Joe’s retirement here.

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