Wednesday, March 12, 2014
Georgetown Times editor Tommy Howard retired from South Carolina’s oldest newspaper on Friday.
After more than four decades in journalism, printing and publishing, Howard will be spending more time with his family.
Starting with a Grit paper route in Georgetown when he was 9 years old, Howard worked in media at the former Winyah High School, at radio in Georgetown, and earned a B.A. in journalism from the University of South Carolina. Drafted from graduate school, he served a tour in the U.S. Army at Fort Benning, Ga., during the Vietnam war.
He has worked in radio in Columbus, Ga., Georgetown, for a Chester radio station, in Columbia and as news director in Camden. He spent decades in printing and publishing and returned to his hometown of Georgetown.
Howard began working for the Georgetown Times in 2000 and has covered county government, city, school board, sports and was state editor for the paper when it switched to publishing five days a week.
For the last several years Howard has been editor of the Georgetown Times and its news family. That includes the Waccamaw Times and Inlet Outlook weekly newspapers, along with the County Chronicle shopper newspaper.
He and his team have led the growth into an Internet presence second to none in the Evening Post Industries family of non-daily newspapers.
The new website South Strand News incorporates news from the three papers and covers Georgetown County and the South Strand like no other. There are about 400,000 page views per month and around 45,000 to 60,000 “unique visitors” each month.
Howard recalls how excited the staff was when Facebook “likes” reached 1,000 people. Today, that social media audience has grown to more than 17,000 likes.
The team at Georgetown Communications has worked hard together to cover the tough, difficult issues of the day while also bringing its readers the stories of the people and the families that make up our communities.
Howard and his team work many long hours each week to bring the news to the people of Georgetown County and beyond.
“It’s tough, demanding work and the commitment to excellence and accuracy drives us forward each day,” Howard said.
Howard and his wife, Ruthann, will celebrate 47 years of marriage in 2014. He is retiring to spend more time with his wife, and his son’s family and grandkids who live in the Maryville community of Georgetown.