Sun publisher honored by USF mass communications honor society

Published: Thursday, April 25, 2013 at 5:32 p.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, April 25, 2013 at 5:32 p.m.

Gainesville Sun Publisher Jim Doughton was honored Thursday night by his alma mater for contributions to journalism and mass communications in Florida.

The University of South Florida chapter of Kappa Tau Alpha Hall, a mass communications honor society, presented him with its Hall of Fame Award at the School of Mass Communications Honors and Awards Banquet at Busch Gardens in Tampa.

Doughton, 65, has been publisher of The Sun since 2000. In April 2012, he also became publisher of The Sun's sister paper, the Ocala Star-Banner, and in July was named regional publisher over eight newspapers for Halifax Media Group.

Growing up in St. Petersburg, Doughton's first job was as a newspaper carrier. After graduating from USF in 1973 with a degree in mass communications, he worked as an advertising sales representative for the St. Petersburg Times starting in 1974.

In 1988, he became advertising director of the Sarasota Herald-Tribune and later was named marketing director before joining The Sun. He also served as chairman of the Florida Press Association.

Doughton is the 34th person to receive the award since 1978 and the first in three years. Past winners include Govs. Lawton Chiles and LeRoy Collins, writer Carl Hiaasen and Diane McFarlin, former Sarasota publisher and current dean of the University of Florida College of Journalism.

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