About the Union-Bulletin

The Walla Walla Union-Bulletin is dedicated to serving the community through quality journalism, professionalism and integrity. The newspaper traces its lineage to 1869, when the Walla Walla Union was founded as a weekly newspaper by a group of Republicans opposed to the Democratic leanings of Walla Walla's earliest newspaper. In 1881 it became a daily and in succeeding years combined with or absorbed several other local newspapers.

The Walla Walla Bulletin began publishing in 1906. John G. Kelly came from Kansas City to purchase the newspaper in 1910 and remained publisher for 45 years. He purchased the Union in 1934 from W.H. Cowles, publisher of the Spokane newspaper, who in 1931 had obtained the Union in a foreclosure proceeding. Mr. Kelly merged the separate publications into the Walla Walla Union-Bulletin in 1934. The newspaper moved into its present facility at 112 S. First Avenue in 1947.

Two years after Mr. Kelly retired in 1955, Frank Mitchell became publisher. Mr. Mitchell remained publisher until 1963. Donald Sherwood, son-in-law of Mr. Kelly, succeeded Mr. Mitchell as publisher.

The Seattle Times Company purchased the Union-Bulletin in October 1971. Mr. Sherwood retained the publisher title. Frank Blethen, current publisher of the Seattle Times, was appointed to succeed him and served as associate publisher from November 1974 until February 1977, when he was named publisher. Charles C. Cochrane Jr. succeeded Mr. Blethen on January 1, 1979 and served in that capacity until 1996. Debbie Frol served as publisher from 1996 TO 2001. Michael Shepard was publisher from 2001 until 2004, when he was named publisher of the Yakima Herald-Republic. Larry Duthie served as publisher from 2004 until April 2009, when he retired. Rob Blethen was appointed to succeed him and served as associate publisher from September 2008 until April 2009, when he was named to his current position as publisher of the Walla Walla Union-Bulletin.

Company Mission

The Union-Bulletin is committed to serving the Walla Walla Valley by being its indispensable local news and information provider - distributing this in a way that best meets each individual's needs. The U-B will assume a leadership role in improving the quality of life of the Valley.

Company Vision

The Union-Bulletin will be the preferred and most trusted source of local news and information for everyone in the Walla Walla Valley. We will achieve excellence in everything we do and be among the best in the nation compared to media companies our size.

Company Core Values

The Union-Bulletin is guided by the following:

  • We value accuracy.
  • We value compassion.
  • We value diversity.
  • We value finding and reporting the truth.
  • We value independence.
  • We value innovation.
  • We value integrity.
  • We value teamwork.

The Company in the Community

The Walla Walla Union-Bulletin values its special relationship with the community. Company-giving programs focus on health and human services, diversity, literacy, youth and the arts. The Union-Bulletin supports many community organizations and activities. It is an annual supporter of the Walla Walla County United Way campaign.

In keeping with a philosophy of preserving and protecting the resources of the Northwest, the Union-Bulletin practices and promotes recycling. Currently, 20-25% of U-B newsprint contains recycled fibers. All newspaper waste is reused; ink, office paper and printing plates are recycled. These efforts have been recognized locally with the Green Seal award presented by Walla Walla County Recycling.

Seattle Times Affiliates

We value the independence of being part of a family-owned company. The Blethen family has solid roots in Washington and cares deeply about the state and the people who live here. The family is committed to journalistic excellence and the long-term health of each Seattle Times Company newspaper. Part of the benefit of the Blethen family ownership is the belief that the decisions affecting the Walla Walla Union-Bulletin are best made locally by people who live and work in the community. All news and editorial decisions, as well as most of the business operating decisions, are made by the people here at the Union-Bulletin.

Other Washington state newspapers include the daily Seattle Times and Yakima Herald-Republic and several weekly newspapers including the Issaquah Press.

Who we are

The Walla Walla Union-Bulletin is a daily newspaper and website serving the Walla Walla Valley. Published Monday through Friday afternoons and Sunday morning, the Union-Bulletin has a circulation of 13,000 and attracts over 100,000 visitors per month to its website Union-Bulletin.com. An award-winning newspaper, it is recognized by the American Society of Newspaper Editors as one of the best small daily newspapers in the United States.