Associated Press Writer
NEW YORK (Wed December 10, 2003) (AP) _ Pulitzer Prize-winner Robert Bartley, the editorial voice of The Wall Street Journal for decades and one of the country's most influential journalists, died Wednesday at a New York hospital. He was 66.
Bartley spent nearly 40 years working at the Journal, including three decades as editorial page editor, becoming an enduring model for generations of reporters as he wrote on issues from Watergate to the World Trade Center.
His wife, Edith, and their three daughters were with Bartley when he died after a battle with cancer, Dow Jones spokeswoman Brigitte Trafford said.
``He clearly was one of the greatest editors in the long history of this company,' Dow Jones CEO Peter Kann said in a staff memo announcing Bartley's death. ``Just as clearly, he was one of the major intellectual forces on our lives and times.'
One week ago, Bartley was chosen by the White House to receive the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation's highest civilian honor.
``Robert L. Bartley is one of the most influential journalists in American history,' President Bush said. ``He helped shape the times in which we live.'
The self-deprecatory Bartley, after winning the medal, said he was ``grateful and humble to receive this recognition from the president.'
Bartley, who lived in Brooklyn, was a Minnesota native and raised in Iowa. He graduated from Iowa State University, and earned a master's degree in political science from the University of Wisconsin.
He joined the Journal in 1962, working as a reporter in the Chicago and Philadelphia bureaus before moving to New York and its editorial page in 1964. He became editorial page editor eight years later, editor of the Journal in 1979, and a vice president of Dow Jones & Co. in 1983.
In an address to the staff last year as he became editor emeritus, Bartley touched on the personal impact of terrorism on his paper: the Sept. 11 attacks that forced the staff from their lower Manhattan home, and the slaying of Journal reporter Daniel Pearl.
``For The Wall Street Journal, the terrorist conflict has been up close and nasty. We had nearly 3,000 Americans killed across the street from our headquarters,' he said. ``None of our colleagues died that day. But many of us did lose friends we miss deeply, and shortly later one of our reporters was kidnapped and brutally killed by terrorists in Pakistan.'
During his three-decade run as editorial page editor, Bartley's work appeared in all the Journal enterprises, from its online sites to The Asian Wall Street Journal.
He weighed in on issues from the Vietnam War to Reaganomics to the Clinton presidency. He captured his Pulitzer for editorial writing in 1980.
His other honors included a citation for excellence from the Overseas Press Club, and an award for distinguished journalism from the New York-based consumer education group, the American Council on Science and Health.
Bartley was the author of a book on Reagan administration economic policy, ``The Seven Fat Years: And How to Do It Again.'
He stepped down as editorial page editor in 2001, but continued to write a weekly column, ``Thinking Things Over.' Bartley's replacement, Paul Gigot, was only the fifth person in 60 years to lead the Journal's editorial page.
Funeral arrangements were incomplete, Trafford said.
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