Langley Advance editor Bob Groeneveld has announced his retirement.
"After 38 years of liaising between Langley’s newsmakers and news readers, I decided it was time to explore some of my other interests," Groeneveld said.
"My garden has been getting short shrift the past couple of years," he said, "and my guitar and sax have been sitting far too idle for far too long."
Groeneveld stressed that his retirement is not connected to the recent sale of the Langley Advance to Black Press, "except that I thought that this was a good nexus to explore an opportunity that had been sitting at the back of my mind for quite some time. What started out as an idle chat slowly evolved into a real possibility, and this week, it has become a very happy reality for Donna and myself."
Groeneveld will step down as editor of the Langley Advance and of the Maple Ridge & Pitt Meadows TIMES â€“ a position he assumed in September of 2010 â€“ at end of day Friday, May 8.
Roxanne Hooper, who has been assistant editor of the Advance and the MR&PM TIMES since 2010, is moving up to the editor’s chair for both papers.
Groeneveld started his community journalism career as a reporter with the Langley Advance in February 1977, and became news editor and then editor in the 1980s.
"Bob’s contributions to the Langley Advance go further than most of us can imagine," said Ryan McAdams, publisher of both the Langley Advance and the MR&PM TIMES. "He’s been a fixture at the Advance and in the Langley community for parts of five decades. Bob’s retirement is a bittersweet day at the Advance and I personally wish Bob and Donna all the best in this new chapter of their life.
"It’s not a goodbye – it’s more of a ‘see you soon.’ Langley thanks you for all you have shared over the years, Bob."
McAdams was pleased to announce that Hooper accepted the promotion to editor of both newspapers.
"Roxanne brings a lot of experience and goodwill to the position," he said, "and I’m confident that all of our readers will appreciate the commitment that she has to community service."
Groeneveld said he was pleased to be succeeded as editor by Hooper, whom he first met when she started her career in newspapers at the Advance as a front office staffer in 1980.
"I have a great deal of respect for Roxanne’s abilities as a journalist and editor, and she has a tremendous understanding of the concept of community," he said.
Hooper grew up in Langley and went on to attend journalism school and establish herself as an award-winning journalist in the B.C. Interior and at the Maple Ridge& Pitt Meadows News, before returning to the Langley Advance in 2006 and accepting the co-editorship at The TIMES in 2010.