Observer Media Group executive editor, co-owner Lisa Walsh dies at 69


From the day she started editing the Longboat Observer to the day she handed over editing duties of the four newspapers she built with her husband, there was never a frantic rush, never a shout, never a tense flurry of activity to meet deadlines. 

No matter how late the papers to the printers or how big the story, Lisa Walsh was never anything but poised. 

It had nothing to do with how much she cared about the papers — and make no mistake, she cared down to the comma — running around barking orders or breathing down reporters’ necks to get copy just wasn’t her nature.

But that doesn’t mean she wasn’t effective. As she leaned over your desk and said, “We’re going to need that story now,” writers got the message. Despite her petite 5-foot-4 frame, perfectly styled hair and manicured nails, she was tough. And everyone knew it.

Of course, everyone knew this by the way she faced challenges — head on. She sought solutions instead of indulging in problems. She let logic prevail over emotion. And in her understated way, whether it was navigating three deadlines a week, sorting out a crisis at a nonprofit or even battling a rare form of Parkinson’s disease for seven years, she led with patience, grace and dignity.

It was that way until the end. She died at 12:25 a.m. Thursday, Sept. 14, from complications from her Parkinson’s. She was 69.

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