Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Miami Herald gets new executive editor; Gyllenhaal promoted

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UPDATED @ 6pm with EXCLUSIVE first look at tomorrow's front page of the Miami Herald!

from the Miami Herald:

The Miami Herald has a new executive editor: Aminda ''Mindy'' Marques Gonzalez, a career South Florida reporter and editor who grew up in Hialeah and covered key events in the region for nearly 25 years.

Marques Gonzalez, 46, replaces Anders Gyllenhaal, who has been promoted by The Herald's corporate parent, McClatchy Newspapers Inc., to be its vice president for news and Washington editor.

Miami Herald publisher David Landsberg announced Marques Gonzalez's promotion Tuesday in The Herald newsroom. Gyllenhaal's promotion was announced at the same time to journalists in McClatchy's Washington, D.C., newsroom.
Sources at the paper tell me that this morning's announcement - which was cloaked in secrecy - took staffers by surprise. Gyllenhaal, who has been described by some at the paper as "hard to read" and "aloof," apparently won't be missed.

An email was sent out at about 10:45am alerting reporters and editors that there would be a meeting at 11am in the newsroom. Marques Gonzalez's promotion was then announced to shocked staffers.

The Herald's parent company McClatchy issued a press release in which company CEO Gary Pruitt praised Gyllenhaal calling him "forward thinking" and "one of the nation's leading editors."

Pruitt apparently doesn't read Random Pixels.

Meanwhile, Marques Gonzalez has her work cut out for her. Her challenge will be to put out a newspaper with a diminshed staff, dwindling resources and a shrinking news hole. Just this morning the Herald rolled out a business section that's no longer a separate section. It's now combined with a slimmed-down Metro section.

One former Herald staffer posted this note on his Facebook page: "Congratulations Mindy. Steer the ship away from the iceberg!"

She may be up to the task. Miami New Times editor Chuck Strouse worked with Marques Gonzalez in the eighties at the Herald Neighbors bureau in Doral. Strouse remembers Marques Gonzalez as a fearless, twenty-something reporter who swore like a sailor. That alone sets her apart from the staid and reserved Gyllenhaal.

Marques Gonzalez first shows up in the Herald archives starting in 1986. Her byline tops stories about pig farms, a doughnut shop owner, rent hikes in Hialeah and bar mitzvahs.

Writing as Aminda Marques - her first story appeared in the Herald on May 25, 1986. In a story barely more than 200 words, Marques wrote about five feet of missing road in Hialeah Gardens:
Royal Palm Road is missing five feet and the culprit is a power house that is part of a new shopping center, said a former member of the Hialeah Gardens Planning and Zoning board.

At the Hialeah Gardens Council meeting Tuesday, Leo Meekins told members the shopping center developers had built a five- foot power house on the 50-foot dedicated road and the structure did not appear on the plans.

"You help the builders out more than the people," Meekins said.

Council members said they were not aware that a power house was being built on the side of the road. Councilman Bruce Nordhagen said he didn't remember ever discussing it.

The building houses electric transformers to provide power to a shopping center under construction at 103rd Street and Okeechobee Road.
Attention in the newsroom will now focus on who will replace Marques Gonzalez as managing editor. Some of the names being mentioned are multi-media editor Rick Hirsch and Metro editor Jay Ducassi.

And another unanswered question: Will Gyllenhaal find himself a new bluegrass band to play with in D.C.?

1 comment:

  1. Does this change present real, save-the-ship change? Or does it do nothing to slow the downward spiral that, with the next real-estate boom, will convert 1 Herald Plaza into a condo complex and chase the newsroom to cheaper office space elsewhere. Those big presses will make a good artificial reef. (You don't need that capacity for a daily press run of 100,000, or less. And that has to be a tough resell market.)

    I hope for a return to the era before the Herald became too big for its britches. Say 1978. Before that crop of execs sold the paper's soul in an all-out Pulitzer quest that ignored the wants and needs of a loyal local folk.


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