Robert Dietsch, journalist and spokesman

Saturday, March 5, 2011; 8:00 PM

Robert Dietsch, 91, a career reporter who became spokesman for the Office of Management and Budget during the Carter administration, died Feb. 28 of leukemia at his home in Bethesda.Mr. Dietsch was a reporter in the Washington bureau of the Scripps-Howard newspaper chain when he joined OMB. During his tenure, budget director Bert Lance resigned amid a financial scandal. Mr. Dietsch later became a press officer with the Small Business Administration until his retirement in 1988.Robert William Dietsch was born in Cleveland. While attending what is now Case Western Reserve University in his home town, he was a stringer for the Cleveland Plain Dealer.Mr. Dietsch served in the Army during World War II. After the war, he edited two weekly newspapers in Ohio and became a reporter with the Billings Gazette in Montana. After working at a paper in upstate New York, he joined the Cleveland Press, a Scripps-owned newspaper. In 1961, he joined the Scripps Washington bureau, where he covered global economic issues. Paulene Gatz Dietsch, his wife of 44 years, died in 1986. Survivors include four children, Deborah Dietsch and John Dietsch, both of Washington; Douglas Dietsch of West Cape May, N.J.; and Craig Dietsch of Cincinnati; a sister; seven grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren.

- Timothy R. Smith

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