TIME’s Correspondent-in-Chief: John Stacks (1942-2012)

A tribute to the magazine’s legendary chief of correspondents by TIME’s news director

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Tom Young / TIME

From the 1960s to the end of the last century, John Stacks was at the heart of the way TIME gathered the news. Much more importantly, he was central to the way that we defined what was news. His reporting on Richard Nixon’s Watergate scandal was key to America’s week-by-week understanding of that most noxious of political cover-ups. His tenure as Chief of Correspondents was a golden age of reportage with his oversight over the integration of TIME’s once separate writing and correspondent staffs. He was as much a champion of the journalists who worked for him as he was tough on the reporting they delivered to his desk. He was devoted to them all his life. Shortly before his death at 70 from the resurgence of a cancer thought to be in remission, he edited and published a tribute to the colleagues he loved, Albest: Untold Stories from the Correspondents for the Legendary Time-Life News Service. Albest, John. Albest.