It's Raining Women At The Sentinel
The Pulp mailbox was recently hit with this list of Sun-Sentinel editors, including their gender/ethnicity:
Deputy Managing Editor: Pat Thompson (female) Editorial Page Editor: Antonio Fins (Hispanic male) News Editor: Willie Fernandez (Hispanic male) Broward Metro Editor: Dana Banker (female) Director of Photography: Taimy Alvarez (female) Business Editor: Anne Vasquez (female) Sunday Editor: Gail DeGeorge (female) Sports Editor: Kathy Laughlin (female) Features Editor: Gretchen Bryant (female) Training Editor: Gail Bulfin (female) Recruitment Editor: Kathleen Pellegrino (female) Community News editor: Melina De Rose (female)
I'm not seeing much significance in the Hispanic male aspect of this list, but the large number of women is a bit revealing. While the top editor (Earl Maucker) and other deputy managing editor (Philip Ward) are white men, the leadership of the place does seem a bit, uh, top-heavy with the fairer sex. My source, who remains anonymous, points to the newspaper's alpha female, Sharon Rosenhause, as the reason for the newsroom's estrogenic overload. And he cites a piece Rosenhause wrote in 2002 as evidence of the bias that led to what he calls the "Sharon Rosenhause reparations tour":
By Sharon Rosenhause Managing editor, South Florida Sun-Sentinel 09.04.02
A well-prepared job applicant recently asked why I was so committed to diversity.
I told him the story of how I got a lot of praise and not much of a raise from the managing editor at my first newspaper.
Since there were few secrets in the newsroom, I knew what others had gotten and complained about the paltry amount.
Well, he harrumphed, and pointed out that I didn't have a family to support. Ah, and so the light bulb went on. And stayed on.
I'm certain I didn't call myself a feminist at that moment, but that's surely when I became one.
And that moment was without question the beginning of my personal and professional commitment to inclusion and to diversity.
Over the years, as I've encountered so many women who were truly and totally committed to diversity, I've wondered if there wasn't something about our gender that made us get it, that made us want to make a difference. I say that having been the "first" too many times in my career.
Maybe it's because women (I almost wrote "of a certain age," but I don't know anyone who would argue that our newsrooms today are models of diversity in terms of gender or any other category) in journalism have had to put up with everything from stupid comments (the raise example) to worse. Much worse.
While it's hard to imagine anyone saying anything quite that offensive today, it's hardly time to celebrate. The glass ceiling is still very real, and most of our newsrooms hardly reflect the communities we cover.
That's why the light bulb has never gone out for me.
Yep, she's an activist feminist, all right, with large chip squarely placed on shoulder. Rosenhause for years has been trading on her unparalleled "commitment to diversity" as evidenced by Maucker's praise of her here. And she had a good point about women in the business ... back in the late 1960s. Here's a scoop for you, Sharon: The newspaper business has been successfully feminized, so you can give that light bulb a rest now.
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