Tallahassee Democrat curmudgeon (I say this with complete affection) Bill Cotterell is one of the newest additions to the Florida Press Association’s Florida Newspaper Hall of Fame.
Bill has been a news reporter for more than 45 years, 27 of them at the Tallahassee Democrat.
Bill retired in 2012 but you can still read his thoughts twice a week, if you like politics, via the Tallahassee Democrat.
When I first met Bill, it was as a fellow reporter in 2002. I was reporting for WCTV and of course, he was with the Democrat. Back then, he walked a little bit faster but even today, his wit and writing are just as sharp.
At the time, WCTV also had a reporter and weekend anchor named April. I guess Bill thought she and I looked alike, because he called me April for years. Out of curiosity, I asked April if Bill called her “Ann” and she said “No, why would he do that? We don’t look anything alike??”
It wasn’t until after I left WCTV that he walked up to me one day and said “Why didn’t you ever correct me, ANN??” We laughed.
Despite that one funny mix up, I know Bill to be one of the best writers in the state of Florida and continues to be one of my personal favorites of all time, with the highest level of integrity and fairness.
If you’ve never met him, or spoken to him, I believe he sounds exactly how he looks….sort of “scratchy.”
I am so happy for Bill and this latest achievement. While there are others who also deserve the honor, the Press Association got it right this year.