James Buford Boone, Sr., 1909 - 1983

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James Buford Boone, Sr., 1909 - 1983


Civic leaders


Buford Boone was a long-time publisher of The Tuscaloosa News and a community leader.

A native of Newman, Ga., Boone received the Pulitizer Prize for editorial writing in 1957 in recognition of the "fearless and reasoned" editorial he wrote during the period when Autherine Lucy sought admittance as the first black students at the University of Alabama.

Boone graduated from Mercer University and began a newspaper carrer with the Macon Telegraph. He left the Telegraph for four years to become a special agent in the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He then returned to the Telegraph as editor.

He became publisher of the Tuscaloosa News in 1947. In 1954, he organized his own publishing company, Tuscaloosa Newspapers Inc. and served as its president until 1968. His son, James B. Boone Jr. became publisher of the News and president of the corporation at that time. Boone continued as chairman of the board until his retirement in 1974.

Buford Boone was the recipient of many awards and held an honorary doctorate of Humane Letters from the University of Alabama. He was named Mercer University's Distinguished Alumnus in 1979. After his death, he was inducted into the Tuscaloosa County Civic Hall of Fame in 2001, the first year of the award that was designed to honor citizens who made long-term, significant contributions to the development of the county while at the same time celebrating the community's history and heritage.

While at the Tuscaloosa News, Boone established financial assistance for more than 300 students. He assisted the UA department of journalism through gifts and grants.

When Boone died in 1983, he was survived by his wife, Frances Herin Boone, a son James B. Boone Jr. and a daughter Janette Younkin.


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