Like the breadwinners profiled in his book Next Stop Reloville, Peter Kilborn was a Relo. He was moved eight times over twenty years, to Paris, Los Angeles, London, and Washington, D.C., with intervening years in New York and briefer assignments later to Miami, Rio, and Saudi Arabia.
He grew up in Providence, R.I., is a graduate of Trinity College in Hartford, where he was editor-in-chief of the student newspaper and worked summers for the Hartford Courant and the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. He earned a master’s degree from the Columbia University School of Journalism and later won a Professional Journalism Fellowship to Stanford University.
Kilborn became a staff reporter for the Providence Journal-Bulletin and went on to Business Week as a correspondent in Paris, bureau chief in Los Angeles, an editor for Business Week in New York, and to Newsweek as business editor. He joined the New York Times where he worked for thirty years as an editor and foreign and national correspondent.
He covered Wall Street, northern Europe from London, economic policy in Washington under Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, welfare, health care, and the workplace. Later he roamed rural America for the Times writing Page One stories on ghost towns of the Great Plains, poverty in the Mississippi Delta, the Oklahoma City bombing, illiteracy in Appalachia, hurricanes in Florida and North Carolina, octogenarian dating in Arizona, moonshine in Virginia, and riding lawn mower racing in North Dakota. Kilborn discovered Relos while reporting in Georgia for the newspaper's award-winning series and book Class Matters.
Over his career, The Times accorded him ten Publisher's Awards and nominated him twice for the Pulitzer Prize. At Newsweek, he won the New York Deadline Club’s Special Achievement Citation for his cover story on surging foreign investment in the U.S. He and his wife Susan have two grown children and live outside Washington. Gone from the Times, he has taken up golf and might write a book about it.
"Next Stop Reloville"
In the global economy, moving every few years is the route to the executive suite -- or mere survival.