The former Western Horseman publisher receives a surprise presentation.
During the first weekend of August 2015, current and former Western Horseman employees gathered in Colorado Springs, Colorado, to honor former publisher Randy Witte. They presented him with his portrait, painted by former art director Dwayne Brech.
Portraits of Western Horseman’s most significant leaders—John Ben Snow, Don Flint and Dick Spencer—hang prominently in the magazine’s office in Fort Worth, Texas. The new painting of Witte will now hang beside them.
“Randy had no idea that we planned this,” says General Manager Ernie King. “He was shocked. It was great to honor him.”
With a steady hand, Witte guided the magazine as publisher for 17 years. He joined Western Horseman in 1977 as an editorial assistant, later became editor, and was promoted to publisher in 1989. He retired in 2006. During his tenure, the magazine grew to a circulation of more than 200,000.
“Typical of Randy, he was low-key and humbled by the presentation,” says former editor Pat Close, “and he gave credit for the success of the magazine under his leadership to his Western Horseman staff members.”