OLD Media Moves

Orlando Sentinel biz columnist dies of a heart attack

September 25, 2006

Orlando Sentinel business columnist Susan Strother Clarke died Monday afternoon, one day after suffering a massive heart attack at her home, according to a story on the paper’s Web site. She was 47.

Susan Strother ClarkeThe article stated, “Clarke started working at the Sentinel in 1985, coming from the Gwinnet Daily News in Georgia. She held a variety of editing and reporting positions for the newspaper, and she became the Sentinel’s business columnist in February 2003.

“In the Sentinel newsroom, Clarke was known as a reporter who was always happy to help her colleagues and who had a deep love of journalism. She was also a fierce competitor. In late August, she was the first reporter in the state to break the story of the Burnham Institute selecting Orlando as its new home for medical research.

“‘Susan radiated energy and vitality,’ said Sentinel Editor Charlotte Hall. ‘She loved her community and passionately believed that the journalist’s role was to find the untold story and to serve the public. Susan was a superb reporter and a gifted writer. She generously shared her talents, mentoring and inspiring both young colleagues and her peers.'”

Read more here. I had just met Susan in late July when I was at the paper to run some training sessions for the biz desk, and her columns came across as hard-hitting and not catering to the local business community, a trait too often found in biz columnists.

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