The Tardy Times



                                                    Layoff list (below)

Joan Ryan: 'I will miss all of you'
WHEN IT CAME time to say goodbye at the San Francisco Chronicle, columnist/writer Joan Ryan offered a testimonial seldom comprehended by the nation's sourpuss media analysts.
    “I love newspapers,” she said, “mostly because I love newspaper people.”     
    She spoke near the end of the summer slaughter of 2007, when the Hearst hatchet had 88 new notches in the editorial belt. (Another 125 layoffs, with an undetermined number in editorial, were announced a year later.)
    “I will miss so much about working at the Chronicle,” said Ryan. “Mostly I will miss all of you.”
     Rob Collier, out the door, wrote a note: “The usual clichés truly do apply here – I've had the privilege of working with some immensely talented people, some of whom are still at the paper, and I wish them  continued courage and inspiration. It truly is a noble calling, and although we newspaper scribes certainly would be materially richer if we had chosen another  profession, we would be intellectually and spiritually poorer.”

THE OUSTER ROSTER as of the first of this year is at the end of this report. Many other losses have been reported since then.
     By the numbers:      
     Bureaus: 8. (In Sacramento, 3 reporters, 1 bureau chief and 1 editorial aide; in Los Angeles, the only reporter; in Washington, D.C., 2 reporters.)           
     Women: 36. (6 in management)
     Photography: 6.  (5 women, 1 man).
     Columnists: 6.  (Regular: Joan Ryan, David Lazarus, Neva Chonin. Frequent: Louis Freedberg, Catherine Bigelow, Paul McHugh.)
     Minorities: 9. (2 black, 1 Latina, 7 Asian.) Minorities in management: 3.
     Demographic beat:
3.  (All of them.)
     Reporters with special expertise: 15. (Anna Badkhen, Iraq and elsewhere; Rob Collier, Latin America; Glen Martin, environment and public policy; Keay Davidson, science and earthquakes; Mitch Stephens, prep sports; Kevin Lynch, pro football; Vanessa Hua, Asian-American affairs; Karola Saekel Craib, food; Christina Delsol, travel; Ed Epstein and Marc Sandalow, national politics; Dan Fost, media; Greg Lucas and Mark Martin, state politics.  Many others. Don Lattin, religion writer, who was on leave, resigned.)
    Award-winning writers: 6.  (Vickie Haddock, Kathy Seligman, Chuck Squatriglia, Ilene Lelchuk, Mike Weiss, Janine Defao.)  Plus many more.  
   Copy editors: 10. (Heather Jones, Will Crain, Fran Irwin, Scott Mattoon, Bill Pates, Rick Radin, La Tricia Ransom, Wanda Ravernell, Mike Woolcott, Leslie Guttman.)
NOTES (as of early 2008):  Paul Wilner (at right) messaged the Gazoot: “A friend of mine recently reminded me that his father told him, ‘Nobody ever went to their deathbed wishing they'd spent more time at the office.’ I do feel like a load has been lifted off my shoulders.” Paul's Style section won top honors in 2007, but the Chronicle omitted naming him in the awards story  . . . Biggest loss of institutional history and in-depth knowledge of Bay Area's political background: Steve Cook. His ouster prompted this comment: "This is the single biggest reason I've canceled my Chronicle subscription and signed up with Salon online. I mourn the changes in media upon us, when seasoned investigative staff and editors are replaced by unseasoned, unquestioning, journalistic infants." . . . Robert Rosenthal took over on Jan. 2 as executive director of the Center for Investigative Reporting  . . . John Curley is teaching at UC Berkeley . . . Gary Fong is busy with his Genesis Photo Agency . . . Vanessa Hua is working on a master’s degree in fine arts at UC-Berkeley. . . . Narda Zacchino is a co-author with Mary Tillman, mother of the Pat Tillman killed by not-so-friendly fire. . . Mark Sandalow is writing a biography of Nancy Pelosi . . . Louis Freedberg founded the California Media Collaborative  . . . Anna Badkhen was hired swiftly by the Boston Globe and was sent back to Baghdad … Rob Collier is a visiting scholar at the Goldman Institute of Public Policy at UC-Berkeley . . .  Ed Epstein will cover Congress for the Congressional Quarterly . . . Chris Feldhorn planned to finish work on a play and screenplay, then spend several months in London and Rome    . . . Heather Jones will edit a book on health care. . . . Linda Gledhill went to work for Don Perata, president pro tem of the state Senate, and Glen Martin signed on with the Little Hoover Commission . . .  Mike Weiss plans to live much of the year in England . . . David Lazarus was snapped up by the Los Angeles Times . . .  Matt Stannard avoided the downsizing by taking a Knight Fellowship at Stanford. . . . Michael Taylor survived the cut (good news) but lost his gig as the best automobile reviewer in newspaper history. As of February 2008, Mike was at home, recovering from bypass surgery. . . Also writing a book or two: Trish Lisk . . .    Jim Finefrock (at left) is teaching at Cal and working on a novel . . . Keay Davidson will try to finish “The Death of Truth,” his biography of the late Thomas S. Kuhn . . . La Tricia Ransom will end 19 years of journalistic detachment to work for SEIU Oakland Local 1021.

Later departures, according to the Chronicle Insider:  Travel writer Jeanne Cooper (to freelance and a website on Hawai'i travel), reporter Jim Zamora (to SEIU in  Sacramento), editorial systems manager David Dalton (retired), news production’s Ron Hender (to CCI in Atlanta) and picture editor Jim Meriwether (to Wired News). No landing pad was disclosed to the Gazoot for photographer Chris Stewart, Jason Tong of MIS and investigative reporter Chuck Finnie. Other departures, as of September: Copy editor Chris O'Connell, business reporter Ilana DeBare. investigative reporter Erin McCormick, cityside reporter Carrie Sturrock.  Dick Rogers, former Ex city editor and the Chron's Public Editor/Reader Represenative. And others.

Comment from one of the survivors: "No hope. There's just no hope."

WITH THE WARNING that the following names come from various sources, some of them accurate, here's an unofficial list of the Chronicle's summer bloodletting in 2007.

Armstrong, David - business reporter
Badkhen, Anna - foreign-national reporter
Beningof, Bill - SFGate advertising
Bensinger, Gail - foreign editor                                                            
Benson, Colleen - business editorial assistant
Bigelow, Catherine - society columnist  
Bush, Darryl  - photographer
Camps, Mark - reporter sports  
Cheung, Neivath -  assistant archivist library
Chonin, Neva - columnist, arts  
Collier, Rob - reporter   
Cook, Steve - asst. ME for enterprise
Craib, Karola Saekel - reporter, food pages
Crain, Will  - copy editor  
Curley, John - deputy managing editor                                                                          Curley
Davidson, Keay - science reporter  
DeFao, Janine - reporter  
Delsol, Cristine - deputy travel editor  
Delvecchio, Rick  - reporter  
Epstein, Ed  - reporter, Washington bureau  
Feist, Paul  - statehouse editor, Sacramento  
Feldhorn, Chris - copy editor  
Finefrock, Jim - editor, Insight section
Finkelstein, David - editorial assistant  
Fong, Gary - director of graphics technology
Fost, Dan - technology and media reporter  
Freedberg, Louis - columnist/edit writer
Gladstone, Penni - photographer  
Gledhill,, Linda
Gray, Blake - wine reporter  
Guevarra, Leslie  - deputy managing editor
Guynn, Jessica - reporter
Haddock, Vickie - writer for Insight   
Hayes, Betty - classified department
Hoge, Patrick  - reporter  
Howe, Ken - business editor
Hua, Vanessa  - reporter, demographics
Impellizzeri, Laura -assistant metro editor
Irwin, Fran - copy editor food  
Jackson, Lance - graphic artist  
Johnson, Jason - reporter  
Jones, Heather - copy editor  
Judson, George - asst. ME for enterprise
King, Daniel - editorial assistant, features  
Kirkland, Marshall - Sacramento ed.asst.  
Koci-Hernandez, Christina - photographer  
Lazarus, David - columnist, business  
Lelchuk, Ilene - reporter, demographics  
Lisk, Trisha - executive assistant
Lucas,Greg - Sacramento bureau reporter  
Lynch, Kevin - reporter, sports  
Mangelsdorf, Liz  - photographer  
Martin, Glen - reporter, environmental issues  
Martin, Mark  - Sacramento bureau reporter  
Mattoon, Scott  - nation/world editor  
McHugh, Paul  - outdoors reporter  
McKeon, Ross - reporter (hockey)
Miller, Wendy - Sunday editor
Nelson, Hulda - art director
Nobles, Rick - artist graphics dept      
Pates, Bill - letters to the editor
Perkins, Laura  - research librarian  
Pullen, Suzanne - reporter, ChronWatch  
Rachels, Ed - graphic artist  
Radin, Rick  - copy editor  
Ransom, La Tricia  - news desk
Ravernell, Wanda - copy editor, features  
Rhodes, Kathleen - research librarian
Rosenthal, Robert  - managing editor
Ryan, Joan - columnist
Sandalow, Mark - Washington reporter
Sande, Steve - features editorial asst.  
Sarkar, Pia  - business reporter  
Schrager, Anne  - photo tech  
Seligman, Kathy  - features writer  
Shoulak, Joe - info graphics artist  
Squatriglia, Chuck - reporter  
Stephens, Mitch - sports
Sterngold, James - Los Angeles bureau
Swift, Thor  - photo tech  
Swillinger, Heidi - public editor, Two Cents
Tong, David  - assistant business editor
Wade, Kat - photographer 
Weiss, Mike - features writer
Wilner, Paul - editor, Style section
Zacchino, Narda - associate editor

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