S R NATHAN 1924 — 2016

Winning over journalists

Mr Nathan, then executive chairman of The Straits Times Press, with photographer H.L. Chan, who won the Straits Times Picture of the Year in 1985.
Mr Nathan, then executive chairman of The Straits Times Press, with photographer H.L. Chan, who won the Straits Times Picture of the Year in 1985.ST FILE PHOTO

Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, on how Mr Nathan overcame suspicion in the newsroom when he became executive chairman of The Straits Times Press.

"After Mr Nathan retired from Government in 1982, Prime Minister Lee Kuan Yew asked him to be the executive chairman of The Straits Times Press. This was new and uncharted territory for him.

Eyed suspiciously as a former government man, he was hardly welcomed with open arms by the journalists.

But his sincerity won them over. He spent six years there. In his gentle but effective manner, he helped the journalists understand our unique context as a young nation, and gave them the support and the space to run a high-quality, successful newspaper. "

 

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 27, 2016, with the headline 'Winning over journalists'. Print Edition | Subscribe