Mark Porubcansky ’77 on covering foreign affairs for Los Angeles Times

Porubcansky ’77 of Los Angeles, Calif., has gone from his rural Wisconsin childhood home to places around the world for nearly 12 years as a foreign correspondent and now as foreign editor of the Los Angeles Times newspaper.

Previously, he served the Times as an assistant foreign editor, foreign projects editor and deputy foreign editor since 1998, and worked in the Moscow, Vienna and Hong Kong bureaus of the Associated Press.

“I’d always been intrigued by foreign correspondence,” he says. “I grew up watching reports on the Vietnam War and Watergate. It was an era where a lot of important things were happening in the outside world, and I wanted to be a part of it.

“Journalism had a place. I was always aware of the potential of journalism for good and intrigued by the possibilities of things one could do with it.”

He enjoys now being on the editing side of the news. “It was great to have adventures, but it’s also nice to no longer get that phone call in the middle of the night telling you to pack your bags right now. And it didn’t always seem like such a big story to me. Now I’m on the other end of that, making those kinds of judgments.”

According to Porubcansky, “The world has not gotten any smaller, but the choices of what you do and don’t do have gotten much more difficult.”


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