Sun-Sentinel Kills National/Foreign Desk

As the Inter American Press Association, which focuses on freedom of the press in South and Central America, holds its general assembly in Miami, the Sun-Sentinel takes the moment to ... say to hell with national and international news.

While the Miami Herald is focusing its coverage on the IAPA to address serious problems facing journalists in Latin America -- like the assassination of journalists and the harassment and jailing of reporters in Cuba and Venezuela -- the Sentinel writes about a pronouncement by its publisher, Howard Greenberg, that the "customer is in control" and that there must be a much tighter focus on local news. Editor Earl Maucker chimes in to talk about his "controversial efforts" to "bridge" the marketing and editorial departments. Amazingly, the new Sentinel catchphrase "transformative change" didn't make the final draft.

The Sentinel article also didn't mention that the Tribune-owned newspaper's management announced yesterday on the company's Intranet that it is killing its National/Foreign Department. The department's handful of editors and single reporter, Tim Collie, are all being dispersed elsewhere within the newspaper to help it "emphasize local, useful, and helpful content across the newsroom."

Way to show that Inter American Press spirit, Sentinel!

Here's a full copy of the announcement, which includes numerous management changes:

We're announcing a number of changes today that will move resources to help us continue to emphasize local, useful and helpful content across the newsroom.

Effective Oct. 22, there will no longer be a National/Foreign Department. Its staff and functions will be spread out, as follows:

N/F Editor Michele Salcedo will direct the Race & Demographics Team which will include the Havana Bureau. Michele will report to DME Philip Ward.

Deputy N/F Editor Cyndi Metzger will continue as Outlook editor and coordinate presidential primary and election coverage, including polls, and will work with Washington Bureau Chief Bill Gibson. Cindy also will assist with Business, Features, Help Team and Sunday editing. She will report to DME Pat Thompson.

Wire Editors Deborah Wood, Mindy Brown and Ed Giuliotti will become part of the News/Copy Desk, reporting to DME Willie Fernandez.

Senior Writer Tim Collie will report to Sunday Editor Gail DeGeorge.

Effective immediately, DME Pat Thompson will oversee Features and Features Editor Gretchen Day Bryant will report to Pat.

The following changes, effective Oct. 22, involve Broward Local:

Wire Editor Russell Small will be Assistant City Editor for the politics/government team. Russell will report to Metro Editor Dana Banker.

Assistant City Editor David Cazares will take on a new role as South Broward Bureau Chief in the Weston office. Assistant City Editors Jody Rees and Noreen Marcus will report to David.

South Broward Bureau Chief Dana Williams returns to Fort Lauderdale as the Assistant City Editor for breaking news and public safety, including Early Morning Team ACE Rafael Olmeda. She continues to report to Dana Banker.

ACE Alan Cherry will be the Day Slot, and will continue to report to Dana Banker.

We are seeking to hire an Assistant City Editor for the courts/education team.

Please join us in wishing everyone good luck in their new assignments.

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Journalist Bob Norman has been raking the muck of South Florida for the past 25 years. His work has led to criminal cases against corrupt politicians, the ouster of bad judges from the bench, and has garnered dozens of state, regional, and national awards.
Contact: Bob Norman