Steve Tinnen is headed for the Missouri Press Association Hall of Fame.
The Missouri Press Association announced this week that Tinnen, the former owner and publisher of The Clinton County Leader and a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, will be inducted into the Hall of Fame during 155th Annual Missouri Press Association Convention in September.
“When Mark Maassen, the Missouri Press Association executive director, called me to tell me that I had been selected to the Missouri Press Association Hall of Fame, I have to admit, I was beyond surprised,” Tinnen said. “Not for one moment did I ever think I would be enshrined with so many talented and dedicated journalists.”
In 1981, Steve Tinnen joined The Clinton County Leader, working with his father, Skip Tinnen, and doing every job required at his hometown newspaper, from selling ads and writing features to covering hard news and shooting sports photos. Twenty years later, he took over as publisher and became the newspaper’s ninth owner until he and wife Sue sold it in 2021 to retire to spend time with their children, Liz and Jimmy, and granddaughter, Maddie.
Tinnen has earned a reputation as one of the top publishers in Missouri with unbreakable dedication to balance and truth. Every week for more than 1,040 weeks, beginning when he became publisher in 2001, he has written his column, “What’s the Shape of the World?” His work and the work of the staff at The Clinton County Leader has been recognized on numerous occasions, including earning two gold medals and two first place General Excellence awards from the Missouri Press Foundation’s Better Newspaper Contest in recent years.
He has previously been active on the MPA Board of Directors and is very involved in the Northwest Missouri Press Association, including contacting presenters and helping to organize the group’s annual meeting. Outside of the newspaper industry, he has served on the Cameron Regional Medical Center Board of Directors, the Clinton County R-III Board of Education and the Plattsburg Parks Board.
Tinnen is known in the Plattsburg community as one of its loudest supporters, most honest critics and a vigilant defender. The same things can be said for his commitment to Missouri newspapers and the journalism craft.
Steve and Sue sold Tinnen Publishing and The Clinton County Leader to Jamey and D’Anna Honeycutt in May.
“The aphorism ‘a rising tide lifts all boats’ is attributed to JFK,” Steve said. “This quote is so true when considering my inclusion into the Missouri Press Hall of Fame. My staff’s work lifted my boat all the way to the Missouri Press Hall of Fame. And for that I will be eternally grateful.”
Established by MPA in 1991, the 2021 Hall of Fame class will be the 31st group to be inducted, and their induction will take place at the same time as the 30th class. Last year’s induction ceremony had to be canceled due to COVID-19 pandemic concerns.
Tinnen will be joined in the 2021 induction class by the late Alan R. Turley, former publisher of The Van Buren Current Local, and Jack “Miles” Ventimiglia, longtime editor of several Missouri newspapers, including the Richmond News.
The 2020 Hall of Fame class includes the late Laura Rollins Hockaday, longtime society editor for The Kansas City Star; Kia Breaux, Midwest regional director for The Associated Press; and Dane Vernon, former publisher of Vernon Publishing and former MPA President.
Hall of Fame inductees or their families receive Pinnacle Awards in honor of the inductees’ service to the Missouri newspaper industry and their communities. Inductees’ plaques will join the permanent display of inductees in the MPA office in Columbia and in the student lounge in Lee Hills Hall at the Missouri School of Journalism.
Looking for a specific blog post?