After 5½ years as publisher of The Daily Advance, Ann Hoffman has announced she will retire from the newspaper industry effective Sept. 27, and will take on a new role as executive director of the College of The Albemarle Foundation and Institutional Advancement.
John Cooke Jr., president of Cooke Communications, has selected Mike Goodman, executive editor of The Advance, The Perquimans Weekly and Chowan Herald, as interim publisher, effective Oct. 1.
Hoffman, 62, has worked for newspapers for almost 40 years, beginning as an editorial assistant at The Raleigh Times in 1973. Her career as a reporter, copy editor, editor and publisher has included 16 years with The Virginian-Pilot in Norfolk, Va., and 14 years with Cox Newspapers in Ohio where she last served as group publisher for two dailies and seven non-dailies. She came to The Advance, then a Cox-owned newspaper, in February 2008. The paper was sold to Cooke Communications in 2009.
“Ann has been a dependable and strong publisher for The Daily Advance, Chowan Herald, and The Perquimans Weekly,” Cooke said. “We have certainly benefited from her vast wealth of experience gained over her years in the industry. It’s been a pleasure working with her since purchasing the newspaper group in 2009.”
During her years as publisher, The Advance, Herald and The Perquimans Weekly have won dozens of awards from the North Carolina Press Association, including a General Excellence award, the highest honor for newspapers of a particular circulation size. Hoffman oversaw a reorganization of the management structure for the daily and non-dailies, a redesign of The Advance and its website and the implementation of subscriber-based online access.
“I’ve worked for newspapers for nearly all of my adult life, large and small, so I will miss it, but especially the Albemarle Cluster, as we call our papers,” Hoffman said. “The staff is dedicated to doing the best for our readers and customers. They work hard and it is a team effort.
“A community newspaper is critical to maintaining an informed citizenry,” she continued. “We are the only comprehensive source of local news and information in northeastern North Carolina. I hope that our readers and customers appreciate that.”
Hoffman said the opportunity to work at COA came at an opportune time, as she planned to retire in February 2014.
“It’s not every day that you get the chance to try something new, especially late in your career,” she said.
“I believe in COA, its mission and importance to our region. I have been on the foundation board for a year and have seen first-hand the benefits it brings to students, faculty and the community in teaching and training the workforce,” she said. “I will do my best to grow the foundation in order to continue to provide support to COA.”
Hoffman has been active in the community, serving on several boards, including the Albemarle Area United Way, Girls Inc., the Education Foundation and River City Community Development Corp. She currently is immediate past-president of the Elizabeth City Rotary Club, past-chair of the Elizabeth City Area Chamber of Commerce, a member of the Elizabeth City-Pasquotank Economic Development Commission and vice-president of the Downtown Business and Professionals Association.
Goodman is currently celebrating his 35th year with The Advance.
A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Journalism, Goodman began his career with The Advance in 1978 as a copy editor and reporter. He became news editor in 1979 and managing editor in 1981.
During his tenure, The Advance has won countless NCPA awards for excellence in editorial content, reporting, design, photography, websites and in other areas.
“I have great confidence in Mike, and expect his substantial knowledge of the Albemarle area and Elizabeth City will serve our readers and advertisers well after spending more than three decades as editor at The Daily Advance,” Cooke said.
“I look forward to my new role at The Advance,” Goodman said. “I have spent many years here working with people who are strongly committed to producing good newspapers, websites and other products. “Having made this area my home, I’m committed to the region, its people, its culture and my strong belief in its future. I will make the most of this opportunity to serve The Daily Advance, our readers and our customers.”
Goodman will continue to serve as executive editor of The Advance, The Perquimans Weekly and the Chowan Herald.