‘Wise and visionary’: Retired Tallahassee Democrat publisher Carrol Dadisman dies at 87



“He was a true gentleman in every way,” another former publisher said.

Carrol Dadisman was a journalist to the very end.

The former publisher of the Tallahassee Democrat, whose community involvement extended well beyond his years at the helm of Florida’s capital newspaper, died from cancer Thursday at his home.

But first, the Florida Newspaper Hall of Fame member drafted his own detailed obituary, complete with editor’s notes on possible details and changes.

“Carrol to me was just an amazing person, so generous and thoughtful. He was wise and visionary,” said Joy Watkins, former president of the Community Foundation of North Florida. She said Dadisman, 87, “was the driving force behind the foundation.”

The foundation helps people with charitable giving and advises nonprofit organizations on ways to increase their endowments. It was one of Dadisman’s major civic activities after his 16-year tenure as Democrat publisher from 1981-97.

His journalism career leading newspapers in Columbus, Georgia and Tallahassee spanned an era of great social change in the South and economic hard times for print journalism. Dadisman was known as a strong advocate of press freedoms and took an active interest in state and local business and political events.

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