The Clintonville community lost an asset last week with the passing of Arleen Gleason, who, along with her husband, Walter, owned the Clintonville Tribune-Gazette from 1951 through 1993.
Arleen passed away, Thursday, March 5. She was 90 years old. Walter had passed away in 1995.
Arleen served as co-publisher of the Tribune-Gazette.
For more than 50 years, both Arleen and Walter were active in the Wisconsin Newspaper Association.
When they sold the Tribune-Gazette in 1993, the new owners had high regards for the Gleasons.
“We hope to continue the fine newspaper tradition the readers have come to enjoy and expect from the Gleasons,” said new owner, Scott McGraw back in 1993. “We hope to also continue that regard with the advertisers to provide an effective advertising vehicle for the local economy.”
When Arleen and Walter sold the paper in 1993, The Tribune-Gazette wrote a series of stories honoring the former owners.
The first story in the series began with the following paragraph about Arleen and Walter, “They are described with such words as trustworthy, compassionate, diplomatic, and wise. They have been one of the most respected and quietly influential couples of their city for over four decades, and their retirement will cause more than a few ripples across town.”
McGraw also said in 1993, “Obviously after 42 years, Walt and Arleen have both put in a lot of time and energy. There’s a love affair created between them and the community.”
In that story, Richard Koeppen, who worked for the Gleasons from 1963 to 1987 as their advertising manager, said compassion is what he would remember the most about the Gleasons.
“As a Tribune-Gazette staff under Walt and Arleen Gleason, it was like a big compassionate family that worked together to produce the weekly event, the publishing of the Tribune-Gazette,” Koeppen said in 1993.
Bernice Fuhrmann, who worked for the Gleasons said, “I started working for Walt and Arleen back in 1976. It was very family oriented working for the Tribune-Gazette. Family came first. And, in fact, the whole work staff became like a second family. I have many fond memories of working for the newspaper over the years. While the mechanics of producing a newspaper have made huge changes over the past 39 years, the atmosphere here at the Tribune-Gazette is still very family friendly.”
Jeff Hoffman, who worked in advertising for Gleasons, and currently works for the Tribune-Gazette, said, “Arleen and Walt were a team when it came to running the T-G. Arleen’s passion for the newspaper business and warmth toward everyone she met made her a special person. I visited often with her for mentoring when I was managing the paper. I found her incite and experience invaluable in running a community newspaper. She will be missed.
Arleen’s obituary can be found in the March 12 issue of the Tribune-Gazette. Her memorial service will be held at a later date at the United Methodist Church in Clintonville.