The following excerpt was sent out by The Associated Press:
Former Associated Press board chair Frank A. Daniels Jr., who shepherded The News & Observer of Raleigh through an era of political and economic transformation in the New South, died Thursday at age 90.
Daniels, whose family owned the North Carolina newspaper for more than a century before it was sold to McClatchy Newspapers Inc. in 1995, died at a Raleigh retirement community where he lived, according to his son, Frank Daniels III. The son said his father died after a month of declining health.
During his 26 years as publisher of the paper of record for state politics and government, The N&O became a regional powerhouse for news, especially from the state’s growing Research Triangle region, and an online pioneer. Similarly, his tenure as chair of AP’s board of directors in the mid-1990s was marked by the not-for-profit news cooperative’s technological expansion.
Daniels’ family company embraced technology in the newspaper industry by developing one of the first World Wide Web newspapers, The NandO Times — a play on the News & Observer name designed to differentiate it from the print product — in 1994 and Nando.net, a commercial internet service provider.
Daniels joined AP’s board of directors in 1983 and served as chair from 1992 to 1997. During his stewardship, AP emphasized expanding its multimedia presence, launching a video news agency business and developing “the Wire,” an effort to combine audio and video news with text and photos.
Daniels retired as N&O publisher in early 1997, months after the newspaper won the Pulitzer Prize for public service for its series on the environmental and health risks associated with the handling of hog waste generated by North Carolina’s growing pork production industry. The paper won two other Pulitzers while he was publisher, including a commentary prize for editor Claude Sitton in 1983.
A Raleigh native, Frank Arthur Daniels Jr. was 14 when he began working for the paper, purchased at an 1894 auction by his grandfather.