Bob Gabordi, executive editor of the Tallahassee Democrat, was announced today as the new executive editor at Florida Today and FloridaToday.com in Brevard County.
Gabordi, 58, has been executive editor in Tallahassee since August 2005. He was previously executive editor of the Asheville (North Carolina) Citizen-Times.
His career with Gannett has spanned 35 years and included jobs in Norwich, Conn.; Gannett New Media; Gannett News Service; North Hills, Pa.; Marietta, Ohio, and Huntington, W.Va., with shorter stints in Springfield, Va., and Jackson, Tenn. He is a four-time recipient of the Gannett President’s Ring.
In a statement, Gabordi said: “Thank you for the best years of my career. The decision to leave Tallahassee was brutally hard. I love it here and always will.”
Gabordi will stay on at the Democrat through Jan. 12. The move to Florida Today, also part of Gannett Company, Inc., gives him an opportunity to be closer to family. He and his wife Donna have five children, ages 33, 31, 26, 22 and 20, and one grandson.
“In the end, the opportunity to get closer to my children and grandchildren won the day,” he said.
During his time in Tallahassee, Gabordi was active on several community boards, including Whole Child Leon. In 2012, he received the Budd Bell Award from Kids Incorporated of the Big Bend in recognition of his advocacy on behalf of children.
And in 2013, he was chairman of the American Heart Association’s Big Bend Heart Walk.
“We have made a difference, you and me, working side-by-side these last nine and a half years,” he said. “We have righted wrongs, confronted wrongdoing by people in authority, fought for public access and proved the lie in the saying you can’t fight City Hall. When we had to, we did and we won more than we lost. We also praised and supported when that was the right thing, too.”
Gabordi’s weekly blog on Tallahassee.com was a seven-time winner in the Florida Society of News Editors annual contest for online blogging/commentary. In 2013, he started Move.Tallahassee.com, an online social community of people passionate about health and fitness.
Gabordi, and his “Movers,” as they’ve become known, meet weekly at area parks and trails for 3-to-5-mile walks.
“I’m proud of our work to get people up and moving, building healthier communities, how we report on nutrition, higher education, state workers and FSU football,” he said.
Gabordi graduated from Roger Williams University with a degree in political studies and Northeastern University with an MBA.
Under his leadership, the Tallahassee Democrat won FSNE awards in two of last three years for investigative reporting.
“I’m very proud of our work to save the Apalachicola River and Wakulla Springs, to force open the doors of shelters to protect the homeless on our coldest nights, to stand for justice and truth-telling in the Rachel Hoffman, Christina West and ADE cases, to challenge the performance of our public institutions in the Jackie Pons and Jameis Winston investigations, the FAMU hazing cases and NCAA-FSU probation records fight, among many others,” he said.
During Gabordi’s tenure, Tallahassee.com grew exponentially.
“We have helped change the way people consume news and information through digital and video,” he said. “I’m proud of how we fought to retain readers of our printed editions even while being among the first in the nation to pioneer a new business model for subscribers. I am most proud of all these things because I got to do them with you.”