Rob Antle has stepped down from his position at The Telegram to take up a new role, as Investigative Journalist/Assistant Editor with Atlantic Business Magazine.
The magazine advertised for the position back in October. Rob Antle was on paternity leave when he saw the ad, but was intrigued immediately.
“I’ve had a fun run at the Tely for nine years, working with some great and really talented people, but it was a natural time to reflect,” Antle said, in an email interview. “Atlantic Business happened to be in the market for an investigative journalist and associate editor. I’ve freelanced for the magazine over the years, and enjoyed the experience. We talked about the position. Ultimately, both sides decided it would be a good fit. A magazine’s long-form style of journalism suits my skill set, I think. And there is much more flexibility for someone with a young family. After much consideration, I decided to take the plunge.”
Antle can recall precisely when he started work at The Telegram, because it was one day before the world changed: September 10, 2001.
“I started there doing lifestyles and features. Within a year or two I was assigned to do other work. I covered the 2003 election and took on the legislative beat. I started doing more and more investigative stories over the years. I’m not sure there was a day I became an ‘investigative reporter,’ but it was something that kind of evolved over time.”
Indeed it did. Antle earned a reputation as one of the province’s finest enterprise reporters. He is the winner of three Atlantic Journalism Awards, and was a finalist on four other occasions. He was the lead reporter on many of the stories that helped The Telegram win the 2008 Canadian Journalism Foundation Excellence in Journalism Award (small and medium market category).
The piece that helped win that last award was Antle’s in-depth, voluminous explanation of the spending scandal. It is the story for which Antle is probably best remembered, and it is his favourite as well.
“I’ll leave it for others to decide what important stories I broke at the Tely, but the most memorable for me was (that) story explaining the genesis of the House of Assembly spending scandal. It ran in early 2007, at a time when no one seemed to know how the pieces of the puzzle fell into place. That is the story to which I received the most response over the years. Lots of e-mails and calls. I actually got handwritten letters in the mail, which is rare these days. I think it proved that, even in this digital age, people will read a 6,000-word story that runs over five entire newspaper pages if it is interesting enough.”
Antle starts with Atlantic Business on January 4. When I asked what we might expect, in terms of story themes, sector focus, and the like, Antle was succinct.
“In general terms, I’m hoping to write interesting, informative stories that readers can’t get anywhere else,” he said.
However, you can get a taste for where Atlantic Business, and its editor, Dawn Chafe, is going with this appointment, by reading the ‘help wanted’ ad from October. It is reproduced in full, below.
Investigative Journalist/Assistant Editor
You are a rare breed in today’s ‘instant news’ world. While you love a scoop as much (or more) than the next journalist, you’re more motivated by getting the whole story and getting it right the first time than you are in being first to publish. You usually begin where other media end: you dig deeper, research further, and uncover unexpected points of view. You believe in taking the time to thoroughly study and understand your subject, revealing stronger, more accurate information in the process.
We are Atlantic Canada’s most award-winning business magazine, and we’re looking for a new team member to advance our commitment to editorial excellence.
The job requires you to: identify and develop unique story ideas; analyze financial documents; investigate leads; conduct interviews; track trends; compile statistics; maintain databases; make sense of complicated data; and, write about it for print and electronic formats. As part of a tight-knit team, you will participate in strategic planning sessions, help prepare editorial calendars, and assist in editing/proof reading as required.
You are a curious, objective and intuitive business/financial journalist. You’re also a highly evolved interviewer with an analytical mind and obsessive dedication to record-keeping and accuracy. Nothing intrigues you more than the untold story. Your superb writing skills ensure that your work is irresistible to readers, drawing a large and loyal audience.