David C. Leavell, 79th president, was born Aug. 18, 1904, at New Market, Mo., and began learning the newspaper business as a printer’s devil at the McAllen Monitor, 1917-23, the McAllen Evening Monitor, 1918-23, in advertising sales.
He attended Texas Christian University, 1923-26, and worked nights in advertising sales and as a reporter for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. Then he attended the University of Missouri where he graduated in 1927 with honors in journalism.
He then worked for one year on the Marshall News-Messenger and then as an ad salesman and reporter at the Longview Daily News.In 1929 he joined the news department of the Fort Worth Press, a job he held until 1946 when he was named general manager of the Galveston News and the Galveston Tribune by publisher W.L. Moody Jr. to succeed Louis Elbert. In May 1945,
Leavell was one of 12 reporters selected by the War Department to tour Europe and North Africa after V-E Day. He wrote articles for the Scripps and United Press news services. Leavell and a number of associates bought the Texas City Sun in 1948. There, he served as president of Mainland Publishing Co. until the company was acquired by the Houston Post in 1963. He retired from the Galveston Daily News on Aug. 26, 1969. He also served as treasurer of Texas Daily Newspaper Association and president of the Southwest School of Printing. He died at age 84 on July 24, 1989, in Texas City.