Journalist, editor and one of the driving forces of Australia’s country press, David Sommerlad died last month aged 92.
ANHG editor Rod Kirkpatrick and contributors John Dunnet, Lloyd Jenkins, Barry Wilson and Arthur Bradley reported his death on August 7 after a life committed to the news industry.
Younger son of NSW publisher Ernest Sommerlad, he spent formative years in Newcastle and Sydney, and Bradford UK, before returning to his family’s papers in Inverell, Glen Innes and Armidale starting in 1952. After Nornews was acquired by Rural Press, he moved to Sydney as executive editor in 1982, and took responsibility for its introduction of phototypesetting and web-offset printing across five divisions in three states.
He was president of the NSW Country Press Association from 1983, going on to become its executive director from1988-2003 and national president (1987) and executive director (1988-1998).
A long-serving member of the Australian Press Council, he was awarded Member of the Order of Australia (AM) in 1995 for service to the print media, particularly through the country press organisations of Australia and New South Wales, and to the community.
Picture: David Sommerlad (photo Inverell Times)