“One of the best reporters I’ve ever known, and one of the best people”: The New York Times Remembers David Rosenbaum

“The best tribute I can think of to David, quintessential Times reporter, is to teach his ways to future journalistic generations, and staff his beat with gung-ho successors. Beam that spotlight, read that fine print. Make David proud. Miss ya, pal.”

Ralph Blumenthal,
Reporter, The New York Times

Remembrances of David Rosenbaum [NYT]

More memories from David Rosenbaum’s colleagues at The New York Times after the jump.


“Someone would ask a question about something legislative or arcane or somesuch. Ask Rosenbaum, we’d say. He always knew. Or would know where to find the answer. His institutional knowledge, of the paper and of Washington, was breath-taking.

He was and always will be a dear one, someone who simply exuded a love for life, for his work, his family and for all of us around him… He embodied what can be considered the spirit of our family, our extended family at the paper.”

Kate Phillips
Washington bureau, The New York Times

“I’m one of the hundreds who David mentored with a kind remark or a bit of always constructive advice. But more importantly, I can remember feeling that David symbolized the kindness and collegiality of so many at The Times, a place with an often undeserved reputation for cold-bloodedness. He was, in a word, a mensch.”

Kevin Sack
Reporter, Los Angeles Times

“He was one of those people who truly made the whole business better.”
Albert Hunt
Executive Editor, Washington bureau of Bloomberg News

“David was a one-man J-school for several generations of Washington reporters. But he taught far more than just the history of the Byrd Rule or which Finance Committee staffer was the real expert on the EITC.

One of his greatest lessons was reminding his colleagues that they had brains and memories and should not be afraid to use them. Because he had seen so much and understood it all, David could confidently make assertions in his stories and Q-heds that made weak-kneed editors blanch…in his unflashy, scrupulously fair way, he was often one of Washington’s most devastating reporters.”

David Firestone
Deputy Metropolitan Editor, The New York Times

“David ended his career as he began it, a reporter’s reporter. But my memories of him will always be of his generosity to a young copy kid taking his first unsteady steps in an unsentimental business.”

Stephen Engelberg
Managing Editor for Enterprise at The Oregonian

(on his memories of how Rosenbaum’s generosity to young reporters had resulted in his first big break)

“He was omnivorously curious and excited about finding things out. As he was leaving for Christmas vacation and retirement, he stopped by my desk to note, with delight, that he had just discovered an English word “that is the opposite of itself. Sanction.”

He was as generous as everyone has said, and more. He had a quiet tradition: on Valentine’s day, all the women in the Washington bureau would find little grade-school valentines amongst the press releases in their mailboxes. His family was central to his conversation. His screensaver was a beautiful picture of his granddaughters. His glasses and worry beads still hang on his monitor.

It is impossible to believe there will be no more giggles.”

Felicity Barringer
Reporter, The New York Times

“Anyone who has ever worked in the Washington bureau knows that David’s good humor and good advice made many a long, tense day endurable. He was a fantastic journalist. He was an even more remarkable human being.”

Frank Bruni
Restaurant Critic, The New York Times

“David was one of the best reporters I’ve ever known, and one of the best people. (He could also hit the hell out of a tennis ball.) He was enthusiastic, simultaneously competitive and kind, and he loved to laugh or, more precisely, to giggle insanely. I can’t tell you how much I’ll miss him.”

Jonathan Landman
Deputy Managing Editor, The New York Times