The Advocate (Louisiana)
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The April 4, 2007 front page of
|Type||Morning daily newspaper|
|Owner(s)||Capital City Press (John Georges)|
|Founded||1909 (with heritage dating to 1842)|
|Headquarters||7290 Bluebonnet Blvd
Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70810
125,000 Sunday (March 2013)
The Advocate is Louisiana's largest daily newspaper. Based in Baton Rouge, it serves the southern portion of the state, including Baton Rouge, New Orleans and Lafayette. It also publishes weekly entertainment magazines: Red in Baton Rouge and Lafayette, and Beaucoup in New Orleans.
Another newspaper, the Louisiana Capitolian, was established in 1868 and soon merged with the then-named Weekly Advocate. By 1889 the paper was being published daily. In 1904, a new owner, William Hamilton, renamed it The Baton Rouge Times and later The State-Times, a paper with emphasis on local news.
In 1909, The State-Times was acquired by Capital City Press, a company newly founded by Charles P. Manship Sr. and James Edmonds. Manship purchased his partner's interest in 1912. In 1925, Manship also began publishing the morning Advocate to focus on national news. The Manship family became an influential force in Baton Rouge, later adding radio station WJBO and television station WBRZ-TV.
The State-Times, an afternoon publication, ceased in October 1991. The Advocate remains the sole descendant of the original 1842 paper. The Manship family's Capital City Press company continued to own and operate The Advocate until 2013.
On October 1, 2012, under the Manships, The Advocate began printing and distributing a daily New Orleans edition for both newsstand and home delivery. This was due to a perceived gap in the market that materialized when New Orleans' longtime daily paper, The Times-Picayune, announced it would cut back its print publication to only three days a week.
In March 2013, New Orleans businessman John Georges, who ran unsuccessfully in 2007 as an Independent for governor of Louisiana, signed a letter of intent to purchase The Advocate. Georges completed the deal to buy The Advocate on April 30, 2013; he co-owns the newspaper with his wife, Dathel, through a holding company, Georges Media. The newspaper's circulation in 2013 was 98,000 (daily) and 125,000 (Sunday) as a result of its entry into and 20,000 subscriptions in the New Orleans market.
Georges is chief executive of Georges Media; Dan Shea is publisher of The Advocate, and Peter Kovacs is editor.
The Advocate relaunched its New Orleans edition August 18, 2013, as The New Orleans Advocate and later added The Acadiana Advocate, a third edition serving Lafayette and the Acadiana region.
David William Thomas, a Louisiana State University journalism professor, published a small Baton Rouge newspaper in the early 1920s, which was acquired by The Advocate. He then published papers in Hammond, and Minden, where he was elected mayor in 1936.
Ed Cullen's "Attic Salt" column was a feature in the paper. His book Letter in a Woodpile collected some of his Morning Advocate and NPR selections.
In 2007, the newspaper lost three of its key staff with the deaths of Capitol Bureau Chief John LaPlante, health reporter and author of "The Patient Person" columns Laurie Smith Anderson and environmental writer Michael P. Dunne. LaPlante died in Texas in a drowning accident, and Anderson and Dunne succumbed to cancer.
In 2013, two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Walt Handelsman returned to Louisiana to join The Advocate as a cartoonist and animator, and columnist James Gill moved to The Advocate from the Times-Picayune.
- Murphy, Paul. "The Advocate overwhelmed with subscribers, leaving some waiting on papers." WWLTV. October 5, 2012. Retrieved on October 10, 2012.
- Hagey, Keach (May 24, 2012). "Times-Picayune of New Orleans No Longer a Daily". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved May 24, 2012.
- Mirkinson, Jack (May 24, 2012). "New Orleans Times-Picayune Faces Deep Cuts, Will End Daily Publication". Huffington Post. Retrieved May 24, 2012.
- "Georges signs letter of intent to buy The Advocate". The Advocate (Louisiana). March 25, 2013. Retrieved 2013-03-26.
- "Georges buys 'The Advocate'". Baton Rouge Morning Advocate, April 30, 2013, p. 1. Retrieved May 1, 2013.