Clarence Pennington, 88, of Hebron, former chief executive officer, editor and publisher of the Review Times, died Friday at The Ohio State University Hospital from complications after bypass surgery.
Pennington, known by his associates as “CP,” purchased the Review Times in 1980. In 1986, the Review Times began efforts to access minutes and tape recordings of meetings from Fostoria City Hospital, which was owned by the city at the time. The Ohio Hospital Association claimed the state’s Sunshine Laws did not apply to private, nonprofit hospital associations.
The newspaper was involved in three years’ worth of litigation in the quest, including three stops in the Ohio Supreme Court and special sessions of the Ohio House of Representatives and the Ohio Senate.
Pennington was instrumental in the rewriting of Ohio’s Sunshine Laws following this legal fight.
The Associated Press Managing Editors Association awarded its 1988 Freedom of Information award to the Review Times after its fight to obtain access to records of board and committee meetings at the hospital. The newspaper also won the Ohio Associated Press First Amendment Award for these efforts.
In 1998, Pennington sold the Review Times to the Findlay Publishing Company.
Prior to arriving in Fostoria, Pennington started his newspaper career at The Ironton Tribune and later moved to The Advocate in Newark, where he rose to vice president and general manager. Pennington’s obituary appears on page A9.
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