Celebrating award with family

Rockport Pilot Editor & Publisher Mike Probst poses with members of his family after receiving the prestigious Frank W. Mayborn Award for Community Leadership.

The Texas Press Association (TPA), an organization of more than 400 paid-circulation newspapers, named Rockport Pilot Editor & Publisher Mike Probst the 2020 recipient of the prestigious Frank W. Mayborn Award for Community Leadership.

The presentation was made at the TPA’s annual Convention & Trade Show Saturday, Jan. 18 at Moody Gardens Convention Center in Galveston.

The award is presented annually to a publisher or newspaper executive who has displayed outstanding and exemplary leadership to the community.

The award comes with a $3,000 scholarship to a Texas college or university of Probst’s choice, to be used to further the education of a full-time student journalist.

TPA President Laurie Ezzell-Brown read a proclamation from District 30 State Rep. Geanie Morrison, which noted Probst has served in his position at the Pilot since 1984 where “over the past 35 years, he has garnered hands-on experience in every aspect of managing a community newspaper, covering Rockport with insight, dedication, and compassion.”

It also noted the two books Probst has authored – Harvey Hit Here (2018) and 30 Years through the News/Lens: A History of Aransas County in News Highlights and Photos (2014).

The resolution closed saying, “For three and a half decades, Mike Probst has dedicated himself to being a voice and a champion for his community, and in so doing, he has greatly benefited the citizens of Rockport and earned the respect and admiration of his fellow journalists.”

Probst began his newspaper career at the Brenham Banner-Press in 1981 after graduating from Texas A&M University. He moved to Rockport in February 1984 to fill in for the late Bob Scott. He was named editor and publisher shortly after Scott’s death that same year. He married his wife, Diane, in December 1984.

History of the award

Sue Mayborn, publisher of the Temple Daily Telegram and Killeen Daily Herald, established the award in 2004 to honor the commendable leadership and service demonstrated by her late husband, Frank W. Mayborn, for his community service and involvement throughout his career as a newspaper executive.

The Frank W. Mayborn Award for Community Leadership honors other newspaper professionals who have a firm commitment to community service, and who are devoting the same zeal to that cause as Mayborn did during his long career.

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