By: Joe Strupp
After nearly 25 years at The Boston Globe, Ben Bradlee Jr. has resigned from the paper, in which he served most recently as deputy managing editor for special projects and investigations. Bradlee, who informed the paper’s staff of the resignation Monday, had been on leave for more than a year writing a biography of Ted Williams and said the outside project was taking longer than he had expected.
“I wanted to do it right and give it the time it deserved,” Bradlee told E&P on Monday. “It just felt right as the time to move on.”
With his 18-month leave of absence set to end in February, Bradlee said he would have had to seek an extension of the leave in order to finish the book, which is due to Little, Brown and Co. by the end of 2004. Instead, he chose to quit entirely, saying he would like to pursue other potential journalistic interests such as teaching once the book is completed.
“I was facing a decision as to whether to come back and I wasn’t nearly done with the book,” Bradlee said. “I am coming up on 25 years at the paper, I recently turned 55, and those are real milestones for taking stock with what you are. I have become more and more interested in the notion that I am not going to stay at the same job or in the same place my entire life.”
Bradlee stressed that he was leaving the newspaper on good terms and held no ill will for anyone at the Globe. Editor Martin Baron praised Bradlee in a memo to staff, calling him a colleague who had brought the Globe “some of its finest journalistic achievements.”
Once the book is completed, Bradlee — who mentioned in a memo to staff that he will now qualify for a company pension — said he might go into teaching or continue writing books. “I’m not thinking of what I will do right now,” said Bradlee, who had written three books prior to the Williams biography. “I find myself interested in a lot of things in print.”