Jim Sanders: ‘There Wasn’t a Finer Person in the Business’

By Mark Joyella 

Former KNSD news director Jim Sanders touched many lives over a long career in local news, and this week–following word of Sanders’ death Monday after a long illness–many of those people have been sharing their stories.

Suzanne Rico worked as a reporter for Sanders at KOVR, then again in San Diego. Sanders, she says, was simply “the best boss ever.” She wrote about him on her blog this week, speaking for many:

In a business that can be more cutthroat than a ship full of pirates, Jim Sanders was all about integrity. From the choice and quality of the stories he put on the air to his mentoring of countless people in all areas of news, he operated from a base of encouragement never negativity. From a heart full of courage instead of fear. Sanders didn’t force you to do your best, he made you want to do your best. And he led by example, holding himself up to the highest standard and trusting that his people would rise to their highest potential. I am not unique in my love and admiration for this funny, charismatic, intelligent man; there are many of us who would have followed Jim Sanders anywhere.

At KNSD, sports director Jim Laslavic delivered an on-air tribute to his former boss. Laslavic noted that Sanders led the station’s move to new downtown studios, but said “he built people, not buildings. There wasn’t a finer person in the business.”