The Deseret News: Vision Rewarded


First published in 1850.


Back in August 2010, the Deseret News announced substantial layoffs (totaling roughly 43% of its workforce) and a number of observers predicted — and not a few of them rejoiced — that this was the beginning of the end for the venerable daily newspaper of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.


After all, aren’t newspapers in general declining, nationally?  (Answer:  Overwhelmingly, yes.)


I had the occasion, though, not too long after that, to meet at some length in his office with Clark Gilbert, the head of Deseret Digital Media and the president and CEO of the Deseret News.  As he outlined his vision for the future of the Deseret News, energetically jumping up from his desk over and over again to sketch things out on his white board, I was dazzled.  Very impressed.  Excited to be even a small part of it.  I loved the high quality of the people who were joining the paper in both editorial and advisory positions.  (See here, for example.)  It wasn’t going to be just a sleepy, ordinary, unremarkable, rather conventionally conservative newspaper in a middle-sized market anymore.


Now it seems that Dr. Gilbert’s vision for the Deseret News is being vindicated:


Those who predicted the demise of the Deseret News – including some over at its rival, the Salt Lake Tribune — were, it seems, wrong.


I’m delighted.  Even though we all know, however little we may mention it publicly, that the real reason for this remarkable success over the past few years is . . .  well, my weekly Thursday column and the column that Bill Hamblin and I contribute every other Saturday.



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  • Lucy Mcgee

    Your weekly contributions most always results in reader responses., which as viewed by a non-media involved person, means that you are doing something right. Good for you. And thanks.

  • Scott Lloyd

    Thank you for your comments, Dan. As a 27- year veteran of the Deseret News, I heartily agree with them and am proud of the contribution you and Bill bring to the paper.

    I wonder, though, why you are displaying the former headquarters of the paper. After the 2010 restructuring, of course, the Deseret News operations were moved to the Triad Center, where they were consolidated with KSL and Deseret Digital Media.

    I was sad to leave that Building on First South. It was dedicated not so very long ago by President Hinckley. We were looking forward to being across the street from the new City Creek development.

    But we have been quite comfortable at Triad for going on three years now.

    • danpeterson

      Oops. You’re right. I thought it might be some sort of new Deseret News HQ in the City Creek development that I hadn’t heard of. I’ll make the change when I can.

      Being an outside contributor who lives almost an hour south of Salt Lake, I almost never visit the DN offices. In fact, my last visit there was the one with Clark Gilbert. I’ve been to KSL more recently, though, and should have been paying more attention.

    • Kent G. Budge


      Good to hear from you. I’m guessing you’re the same Scott Lloyd my sister knew three decades ago? Hope all is going well.

      • Scott Lloyd

        Gracious! Has it been that long?

        I mentioned the Triad Center in my post. I recall that one day in the early 1980s, she and I were in downtown Salt Lake driving past the Triad Center and I mentioned to her that it had been built by wealthy Arabs (Essam and Adnan Khashoggi). She refused to believe me. Back then, I often said things to her in jest, but on this occasion, I was totally in earnest.

        To this day, I don’t know whether she believes I was telling the truth!

  • http://None Lew Craig

    The Deseret News article begat Sic et Non which begat a number of other faith promoting blogs which begat frustration in that I don’t have time to read them all! Thanks for what you do. Love the articles and the blog(s).