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The Nation Publisher to Step Down

July 29, 1998|PAUL D. COLFORD | NEWSDAY

The end of an era has come into view at the Nation, the country's leading magazine of liberal opinion, as Victor Navasky prepares to join the staff of Columbia University after 20 years as the weekly's guiding light.

Navasky, 66, says he has agreed to become director of Columbia's George T. Delacorte Center for Magazine Journalism in January and will run the center as he works to phase himself out as the Nation's publisher and editorial director.

His appointment has not been formally announced by Columbia, but word broke in 116th & Broadway, the newsletter of the university's Graduate School of Journalism.

"It's exciting for me personally, although I haven't finished my conversations with Columbia," Navasky said. "It's odd, but this is real."

The Nation, which reported a weekly circulation of 98,036 in the second half of last year, was founded in 1865. Although it has been unprofitable from the beginning, Navasky said its annual deficit is coming down considerably this year. "My goal is to have this magazine pay its own way . . . or put it in the hands of someone that can guarantee its future," he said.

The Delacorte center offers courses in magazine writing and production to students in the journalism school. Navasky plans to orient the center's program toward journals of opinion.

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