Best Media Baron

David Bradley
Once upon a time, Katharine Graham gave D.C. a world-class media titan: She defied Nixon! She entertained presidents! She oversaw countless other outlets! Since then, our local publisher corps has grown downright soporific: Graham’s Washington Post heirs keep a lower profile. Politico’s ambitious Allbrittons let their editors serve as the paper’s public face. Likewise, Tina Brown, not her D.C.-based Newsweek boss Sidney Harman, will shape that old magazine’s new look. Even the reliably infuriating Marty Peretz, who once terrorized New Republic staffers, has left his perch. Luckily, over in the Watergate, there’s finally a press lord to be proud of: David Bradley, who brought The Atlantic to town, reinvented National Journal, and appears to be making a profit online. Sure, staffers joke about Bradley’s WASPy affectations—and kvetch that his flagship title has imbibed Bradley’s pedantic style. But so what? Media barons are supposed to have quirks! Better to accompany them with an open checkbook than a stack of pink slips.
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