Kenneth Caldean Bronson, 77, of Topeka, died October 25, 2010 at Homestead of Topeka.
Kenneth Caldean Bronson, 77, of Topeka, died October 25, 2010 at Homestead of Topeka. He was born April 15, 1933, the youngest of four children to Lloyd and Lottie Bierman Bronson, Kensington, KS. He graduated valedictorian from Kensington High School; was named the out-standing junior in the KU journalism school, and elected president of Sigma Delta Chi, national honorary journalism society.
Drafted by the Navy, he served on the Boxer aircraft carrier as PIO officer producing a weekly newspaper, radio broadcasts, and the ship’s final cruise book. He returned to Topeka Stauffer Publications covering sports and then the state. He married Edith MacArthur in 1959, graduated from Washburn University, and purchased the weekly newspaper in Pierce City Mo. making it an award-winner.
He rejoined Stauffer in 1962 as editor of the Independence, Mo. newspaper, where he was president of Independence Rotary, a director of numerous boards, and received the Jaycees Distinguished Service Award. Transferred to Pittsburg, Ks in 1966, he merged the two newspapers into The Headlight-Sun, served as president of Pittsburg Rotary Club and the Chamber of Commerce, on many boards of directors and trustees, and on the county Planning Commission and the Board of Zoning Appeals.
Named vice president of Stauffer newspapers in 1977 required a move to Topeka where he grew the division into 22 newspaper plants with 30 publications and started Stauffer Media Systems that became a leading vendor of newspaper software products. Stauffer presented him a plaque in 1993 for 36 years of Extraordinary Effort and Dedication to Excellence.
He became Executive Vice President and CEO of Nixon Newspapers, Peru, IN. in 1993. Retiring in 1997 he moved back to Topeka, and operated Ken Bronson Consulting through 2007. Over his career he led workshops for or spoke to many dozens of newspapers, press associations, and organizations.
On the board of directors of Kansas Press Association he was president, led the Kansas Newspaper Foundation, gave Ad Academies, was inducted into the Kansas Newspaper Hall of Fame in 2002, and was three times interim director.
He was a director and president of the Inland Press Assn and received the 1992 Distinguished Service Award; was president of Kansas-Missouri Associated Press editors and publishers; presided at the ANPA 1983 convention in Las Vegas; was a Mid-America Press Institute in St. Louis director and a William Allen White Foundation trustee.
He served on the Kansas Commission on Judicial Qualifications from 1974-1993, was elected chair, and was the first recipient of the Kansas Supreme Court’s Kansas Justice Award in 1989. He was elected to the national American Judicature Society Board of Directors in 1992, and spoke at state and national judicial meetings.
The church was dear to his heart and he participated in four congregations of the Christian Church Disciples as deacon, teacher, elder, trustee, and/or moderator. He served the Christian Church in Kansas on the board and executive committee, edited the Messenger for several years, and preached on stewardship in numerous congregations. He was a director of the Christian Board of Publications.
He made time to include his children in his life, attend school events and competitions, and create workshop gifts. He and Edith traveled in 49 of the United States and around the world for professional meetings and with Inland Study missions and Elderhostel. They enjoyed the arts.
His parents and his siblings Verna Jean Lee, Marvin Bronson, Duane Bronson, and their spouses preceded him in death. He is survived by his wife Edith Bronson, Topeka; children Brian Bronson, Reading, Ks, Laura Bronson, NYC, Linda Bronson, Georgetown, KY; and grandsons Kenneth Bronson and David Bronson, Reading, Ks. and many cousins.
Ken will lie in state from noon until 9:00 pm Thursday at Penwell-Gabel Mid-Town Chapel.
Services will be 10:00 a.m. Friday at First Christian Church with interment in Mt. Hope Cemetery. The family will receive friends an hour prior to service time at the church.
In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be given to First Christian Church, 1880 SW Gage Blvd., Topeka 66604, Kansas Press Association Endowment Fund, 5423 SW 7th St., Topeka 66606, or to the Alzheimer’s Association, 4125 SW Gage Center Dr., Topeka 66604.
To leave a special message for the family online, visit www.PenwellGabelTopeka.com.