Ellen Soeteber, 66, of Fort Lauderdale, Fla., born June 15, 1950, in East St. Louis, Ill., died Tuesday, June 21, 2016, at Cleveland Clinic in Weston, Fla.
A graduate of Northwestern University, Ellen began her professional career at two now-defunct afternoon newspapers, the Chicago Daily News and Chicago Today. In 1974, Soeteber joined the Chicago Tribune, where over time she moved up through the ranks as reporter, copy editor, and editor. In 1987, Soeteber was named the Tribune's metropolitan editor. She soon was named assistant managing editor and then associate managing editor. She was appointed deputy editor of the Tribune's editorial board in 1991.
Ellen was named managing editor of the Fort Lauderdale-based South Florida Sun-Sentinel in 1994 and served in that capacity until joining the St. Louis Post-Dispatch in 2001. She was the last editor of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch to serve under the family of its legendary founder, Joseph Pulitzer, and the first and only woman to hold that position. She left the Post-Dispatch in November 2005.
Staff under her direction at the Chicago Tribune, Sun-Sentinel and Post-Dispatch received numerous awards, including the Heywood Broun Award, Award for Young Journalists, the Education Writers Association's Grand Prize, the national SDX prize for deadline-news coverage, National Headliners Best in Show for photography, World Press and Pictures of the Year photo honors, and the Pulitzer Prize for investigative reporting.
She was a member of the board of advisors of Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, the Alfred Friendly Press Fellowship Advisory Committee, and was the visiting professor in ethics and diversity at the Arizona State Cronkite School of Journalism in 2008.
Ellen was preceded in death by her parents, Lyle and Norma, nee Osborn, Soeteber.
Surviving are her husband, Richard Martins of Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; and her sisters, Patricia (James) Synder of Princeton, N.J., and Carol Rosekrantz of New Baden, Ill.
Memorials may be made to Cleveland Clinic in Weston, Fla. Condolences may be expressed to the family online at www.kasslyfuneral.com.
Visitation: Visitation will be from 9 a.m. to noon Wednesday, June 29, 2016, at Kassly Mortuary, 9900 St. Clair Avenue, Fairview Heights, Ill.
Funeral: Graveside services will be held at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday, June 29, 2016, at Oakdale Cemetery, Oakdale, Ill.
KASSLY MORTUARY, Fairview Heights, Ill.
Published in Belleville News-Democrat on June 26, 2016