By: Cary Hatch, CEO, MDB Communications

With the passing of Ben Bradlee, there will be a plethora of media coverage about Watergate, Woodward and Bernstein, his relationship with Katharine Graham, his notable work-ethic, etc., etc., etc. In addition to his journalistic leadership and prowess, I’d like to also note that he was a fervent advocate for the regional business and advertising community.

While some were in awe of him (and with good reason) he was far from intimidating – a truly authentic leader with a genuine touch for contributing to the community he called home. I recall his genuine interest in connecting to Greater Washington businesses – particularly his willingness to host a major event for Advertising Week DC in 2005.

A truly brilliant man and leader, Mr. Bradlee hosted an evening forum at The Washington Post – “Watergate, Iran-Contra and Ronald McDonald: What do they all have in common?” The room was packed and attendees hung on his every word.

While Ben Bradlee will be remembered for his transformational impact in helping to lead the Washington Post to its legendary stature – I remember him as the sprightly, unassuming businessman who cared about the Greater Washington region, and smile when I recall that evening at the Post where he shared his time and storied history in journalism and Washington, D.C.


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