William L. Straub was editor or associate editor of the St. Petersburg Times for 38 years. No one in that era had more impact on the development of the city.
He was a frontier newspaperman in the Dakota Territory prior to moving to Florida and buying the St. Petersburg Times in 1901 for $1,300.
Straub editorially encouraged better roads, schools and government, publicly owned waterfront and parks, tourism and economic growth. He fought bitter, continuing battles against cronyism and corruption in local government.
His most enduring contributions were his successful campaigns to claim St. Petersburg’s waterfront for public ownership and to separate the Pinellas peninsula from Hillsborough County.
In late 1912, Straub sold majority ownership of the Times to Paul Poynter. He continued as associate editor until his death in 1939, battling throughout for civic and community betterment.