A personal note: Void left by Mark Binker's untimely passing
Posted May 1
Raleigh, N.C. — When Mark Binker was hired to lead The Insider my feelings were a bit mixed:
- Disappointed that my company, Capitol Broadcasting’s WRAL would be losing an inquisitive and dedicated journalist.
- Glad for The Insider and the future of government and political journalism in North Carolina.
I have a unique interest in The Insider, as some may know. I conceived and launched it 24 years ago. Mark, I thought, was uniquely suited to lead it. He was the kind of journalist who had the reporting chops and a strong grasp of the institutions he covered. He clearly knew the needs of those he reported on – citizens, politicians, career government bureaucrats, lobbyists, advocates and fellow journalists – and had the entrepreneurial zeal to work to deliver.
The Insider has long had the potential to be the guppy that swallowed the whale. With the dramatic changes in arc of journalism and news media, The Insider, I think, was positioned to ride the upswing and actually be the vehicle that saves more traditional political and government news institutions. Mark had the experience, credibility, ability and drive to lead that shift.
I hope that Mark’s wife Marla and sons can find strength, amid the challenges of the coming days, in the best family memories and that Mark was not just very good at what he did, but widely respected for it.
Mark’s untimely passing is truly a blow to the current state of government and political journalism in North Carolina. As significantly, it leaves its future less certain.
Those who may wish to offer their thoughts and prayers, can do so personally. A condolence book has been set up in the Press Room at the Legislative Building in Raleigh.
-- From Seth Effron, opinion editor, Capitol Broadcasting Co.